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Charity hosts football match for World Mental Health Day
A mental health sport club hosted a football match with Spurs legends to help raise awareness of World Mental Health Day.
The Positive Mental Attitude (PMA) sports charity held the game at White Hart Lane Community Sports Centre with Tottenham legends Garry Brooke, John Lacey and Mark Falco.
PMA uses sport to aid recovery of people with mental health issues and the charity has more than 30 service users, or "players", in Haringey and more across London.
The charity runs a football league with five teams from London and one in Yorkshire, with PMA Haringey FC playing a team of all up of employees from health services, Haringey council and Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health Trust.
Charity founder and former Fulham Ladies player Janette Hynes said: “The point of today’s match is to really raise awareness of mental health in the borough.
“We want to show that people who have mental health problems are capable and just because they have been ill doesn’t mean they can’t do anything.”
Dr Geoff Isaacs, who works in mental health at St Anne’s Hospital and played in the game, said: “Sport is and exercise is very beneficial to our patients as it helps get rid of stress.
“Team spots like football also gives them a sense of purpose and something to be part of so they can all help each other.”
After players have been with PMA for a certain amount of time they are offered the chance work for the charity and gain qualifications to help them into work.
Albert Diaz, 48, has been with the charity for ten years and is now a coach with PMA.
He said: "I used to be in a dark place but with the help of PMA I have been able to get back on track and I think I’m proof the charity really does help people.”