Behavioral health expert Kindbridge has partnered with the NFL Players Association’s (NFLPA) Professional Athletes Foundation (PAF) for the creation of a new program to open the dialogue regarding the importance of mental health in sports.
The NFLPA’s PAF is the foundation that supports former NFL players with resources and services that will now include Kindbridge’s new mental health program.
Through the partnership, the behavioral health experts will offer player-to-player mental health resilience and education infrastructure to the NFLPA’s PAF, providing a player-led space to discuss mental health-related topics, including problem gambling.
Designed to allow former players to leverage the PAF and other NFLPA resources, Kindbridge describes the program as “a first-of-its-kind program group counseling and mental health resource that is aimed at dispelling the myths and alleviating the stigma surrounding mental health”, and a “pivotal investment into the health of former players”.
“The players asked, and we are delivering. This program is an essential step to making more mental health resources available to our retired players community,” commented Tyrone Allen, Director of the PAF.
Kindbridge has stated that data from the program’s first six months will be used to demonstrate the effectiveness of groups guided by licensed mental health specialists. Data from the program’s first 18 months will also be utilized to track the health outcomes of former players who participate.
“The building of robust internal infrastructure to support psychological and mental health is a clear demonstration of the commitment of the Professional Athletes Foundation to take these issues seriously,” added Daniel Umfleet, Founder and CEO of Kindbridge.
“With a huge national and global audience, it is highly encouraging to see the PAF lead by example while playing a major role in destigmatizing mental health issues in sport, in the US and beyond.
“Gambling is another concern that can compound or create serious mental health-related problems. Together with the PAF, we look forward to supporting former NFL players on their journey to better understanding their own mental health.”