Team Talk

George Friend smiles as he talks to members of Team Talk

Team Talk

The collapse of Redcar-based SSI in 2015 left more than 2,000 directly-employed staff without work and affected hundreds more in the supply chain. As a community it was important to the local area to work together and offer a unique project which could help support those affected by recent redundancies.

‘Team Talk’ was joint funded by Middlesbrough Council and Redcar & Cleveland Council along with additional support from Middlesbrough FC players who donated proceeds from their charity topless calendar. The proceeds went directly towards the programme, which significantly helped to launch and run Team Talk.

Team Talk is aimed at engaging males recently made redundant across Teesside, targeting mainly men aged 40+ who have been impacted by the recent closure of SSI Steelworks.

This model looked at engaging local champions in communities that would assist with tackling social isolation and loneliness by supporting individuals to maintain latent functions such as time structure during the day, continued shared experiences with others, goal setting and continuing to be active. It aims to build community resilience using evidence based mental health improvement interventions.

Empowerment is at the heart of the weekly meetings (called ‘Boot Rooms’) with participants being practical and proactive; aiming to help them to fulfill both group and individual goals. The most important feature of the boot rooms is that the members drive the agenda and activities.

The group have engaged in a number of activities including volunteering on Sporting Memories ’66 event at the Riverside Stadium, attending Newcastle Airport for fire safety training alongside talks on seasonal contracts and are also currently voluntarily renovating the environment surrounding their boot room hub site.

The group have received guest speakers from organisations such as Pension wise, Job Centre and National Careers Service, while they have also attended healthy eating workshops ran by Middlesbrough FC’s 1st Team Chef, as well as assisting in the running of the annual steel gala day at Redcar. Aside from this they have taken part in interviews and reports for BBC One, The Politics Show, The Northern Echo, The Evening Gazette and BBC Radio Tees.

Contact Claire on Claire.streeter@mfcfoundation.co.uk or call 01642 757674


MFC Foundation Join Daughters And Dads Active And Empowered Project

We’re delighted to announce we will be part of the Daughters and Dads Active and Empowered project for the next two years.

Women in Sport, in partnership with the Fatherhood Institute, EFL Trust and the University of Newcastle (Australia), is excited to announce that we are the latest to join a growing band supporting this initiative.

We’ll join Leyton Orient Trust, The Albion Foundation (West Bromwich Albion), Foundation of Light (Sunderland AFC) and the Stoke City Community Trust for year two of the project, alongside Fulham FC Foundation, who were part of the project’s inaugural pilot year.

In total, six clubs will deliver the programme for the next two years, supported by Sport England’s Families Fund through National Lottery funding.

The Daughters and Dads Active and Empowered programme has been developed by the University of Newcastle (Australia) and Professor Philip Morgan and his team.

The programme aims to increase physical activity levels, sports skills and social-emotional wellbeing of girls 5-11 years by challenging stereotypes about playing sport and physical activity and increase fathers’ confidence and ability to act as role models in relation to their daughter’s participation.

Rachel Horsley, Girls Football Lead Officer here at MFC Foundation, said: The philosophy behind the programme is very much in keeping with many of our own. We reach across the area with many programmes, but this one is just that little bit different. Programmes like Daughters and Dads help everyone come together, not just the dads and their daughters. Some find it easier than others to show their feelings, or to actively support and encourage. This programme helps on so many levels. It helps emotionally and physically and brings an understanding that the two work together – just like dads and their daughters.”

Eleven families took part in the project’s inaugural year, and the programme had a great impact on those that took part.  Initial findings suggest:

  • Father and father-figures on the programme mentioned growing a stronger bond with their daughters and suggested they would increase the amount of family activity they do as a result of taking part.
  • All the girls that took part in the project showed a strong belief that girls are just as capable as boys at physical activity and should be able to enjoy the same opportunities, both individually and with their family.

Women in Sport and the project partners will explore these initial findings in greater depth with a larger sample size to understand any significant impact in year two and three.

Lee Warren, Innovation Manager for the DAD Project, said: We’re delighted to have five new clubs involved in this project for the next two years alongside continuing our partnership with Fulham who have built strong foundations. We’ve already started to see the impact that the Daughters and Dads Active and Empowered programme can have on its participants and the long-term lifestyle changes that it can deliver. We’re looking forward to seeing these clubs support more families in their local communities to get active.”

Mike Diaper, Executive Director Children, Young People and Tackling Inactivity, at Sport England said: Following a successful first year of testing the Daughters and Dads programme, we are really pleased that our National Lottery investment can now help to extend its reach into new areas across England.   We know that we need to continue to do more to help girls and less affluent families get active, and one thing that hinders this are gender stereotypes that can cause families to believe that physical activity is less important for girls than boys.  We also know that parents and carers often see their role as helpers and less as role models in encouraging their children to be active. This programme, based on a model from Australia, is addressing these challenges and we look forward to seeing the results of this in the North East, West Midlands and London.”

For more information on the Research and Advice Service and Women in Sport’s work visit www.womeninsport.org.