Youth Sports Mental Health & Wellness Alliance
In 2020, the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame and the Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters came together to create a platform to focus on mental wellness for youth athletes. From a shared vision, the Youth Sports: Coaching Positive Mental Health forum series was developed in partnership with Michael Cuddyer, former MLB All-Star, and Betsy Cutler, M.Ed., of Cutler Wellness Programs, LLC. The goal of the forum series was to bring awareness to the mental health crisis in youth sports and to provide resources to youth sports stakeholders, coaches, parents, and athletes. Over the course of 14 months, three programs were presented, A Pandemic Playbook, Bench the Stigma, and #WhoRU.
Following the success of these programs the Hall, CHKD, and Cutler Wellness Programs spearheaded the formation of the Youth Sports Mental Health & Wellness Alliance. The Alliance will bring together youth sports stakeholders throughout the community to promote positive mental health and wellness in sports, and to work toward the following objectives:
- Identify mental health trends and concerns in youth sports.
- Provide expertise and ideas for mental health and wellness programs for coaches, parents, and athletes.
- Share mental health educational resources.
- Promote, market, and advocate for youth sports mental health and wellness programs
In 2024 the Alliance will continue the conversation around youth sports and mental health active throughout the year with Sports & Mental Health conversations, #SportsMentalHealthMonday social media posts, and further events and workshops aimed at providing support to youth athletes and their families, coaches, officials, and additional stakeholders. Through all of these platforms you will hear insight and expertise from stakeholders in and around youth sports in Virginia.
#SportsMentalHealthMonday and the Sports & Mental Health conversations can be found on the Hall of Fame’s Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube pages. Join us as we help to create a positive and healthy atmosphere throughout youth sports in Virginia.