Beamont boys make voices heard

Support plaques will be placed at suicide hotspots across the town thanks to a group of inspiring Orford high school boys.

A team of year 11 boys from Beamont Collegiate Academy wanted to arrange a football tournament against their teachers, but they decided to turn it into a charity event after a visit from Sam Driscoll, a founder of Man Talk, which ‘massively resonated’ with them.

The group organised the whole event themselves alongside sitting their GCSE mock exams.
They set up a raffle, advertised and promoted the event on TVs round the school and organised the tournament itself.

The competition consisted of six teams – four year 11 teams and two teacher teams – and the games took place on the school’s pitches.

A fee was also charged to watch the tournament which saw over 100 student spectators.

And as of Friday, over £600 had been raised for Man Talk – a mental health support group.

After the impressive sum was revealed, Sam shared the news that the money will go towards creating plaques to be placed at unfortunate suicide hot spots in Warrington.

The boys will have the task of creating them and choosing words to appear on the plaques that will show people that ‘life will get better’.

Sam said: “We have spoken with thousands of men through our network as well as working with many large companies doing presentations and talks with their employees on mental health and the importance of mental health maintenance.

“However this is the first time we have been given the opportunity to speak with young men in a school setting and it’s exactly where we need to be.

“These young men have had a challenging few years with Covid disruption but despite that they have reached out to their teachers off their own back to support man talk and raise awareness for mental health, through football.”

As well as raising an incredible amount for the mental health charity, the group have also raised awareness of mental health and the importance of ‘talking’ throughout the school – among teachers as well as pupils.

The boys have been talking to younger pupils at the school about the importance of being open with their feelings, and have become ‘strong leaders’ across the school.