Team Talk has recently received a year-long investment funded by gaming company, 32Red. As a result, Team Talk will open five hubs across the city – alongside their successful pilot hub at Derby County Community Trust offices, located just by Pride Park Stadium.

Team Talk uses the club as a mechanism to engage with men about their mental health. Harley Hollinshead is one of the men who has continued to attend and benefit from the weekly sessions. He wants to share his story to encourage other males to open up about mental health, and step through the door…

“My name is Harley Hollinshead, and I have attended Team Talk since it began in June 2018 and have been an active member and supporter for a year; a male only mental health group ran by Derby County Community Trust.

Team Talk operates every Monday between 6 and 8 o’clock in the evening. The first hour is very relaxed with many of us playing table tennis, getting a hot beverage and having a general talk. The second hour consists of a more structured conversation where we speak about different topics each week.

I first got involved with Team Talk as I was under a lot of stress; this was really playing havoc on my sleeping patterns along with my temper. The hardest part was entering through the doors, but what a fantastic decision it was for me. It has given me a completely different outlook on life in just this small space of time.

Since I have been attending the group, I’ve started to live my life in a new way. I am more understanding and patient, and not just in my personal life but also professionally.

I have become more understanding when different situations arise and have grown in empathy. I prefer to listen than to talk in the structured talks but will add something if I believe it will help another’s situation in the group. I also like to have one-to-one chats as everyone operates differently and it allows me to act as a mentor for others.

Team Talk is such a fantastic group and I class every person in the group as a friend. Once you have been once or twice it really becomes a part of your week. Some of the lads are very busy guys, whereas others don’t have much on, but everyone really looks forward to the Monday night sessions. They allow us to relax, get away from everything, not be judged and have a good chat with like-minded guys.

Before I first started with Team Talk, I was coming out of a bit of a rough patch and could have gone down a bad path. Now I feel revitalised – like a new me has been born – I cannot thank the group and the DCCT staff enough for continuing their hard work.”

Team Talk aims to support men who suffer from mild mental health problems, offering them a secure and friendly space to socialise and talk openly about their thoughts and feelings. Those facing more severe problems will be able to find advice about where best to seek help. The weekly two hour sessions have a positive and relaxed atmosphere where people can meet others who may be experiencing similar mental health issues.

To find out more about the sessions, please email [email protected]


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