Strand Foyer residents tackling men’s mental health
Two residents of Strand Foyer in Derry~Londonderry have headed up a mental health campaign in a bid to encourage men to speak out about how they feel. Oisin O’Donnell and Martin McDonagh, both 19 years-old, took the brave decision to share their own personal struggles in a move to help others.
Working together, they came up with the ‘Man Down’ concept which aims to dismiss the idea that men are expected to ‘man up’ when things get difficult. The pair recently launched the campaign with a short film and mural; and ‘Man Down’ wristbands and fliers to spread the message.
Revealing why they decided to focus on men’s mental health, Oisin O’Donnell said:
From our own personal experiences, Martin and I know how difficult it is to speak out and to admit that you are not feeling ok. That’s hard and it takes guts. A lot of the time, men especially, feel that they can’t talk about their emotions or they feel that they have to be strong but they don’t. I have seen first-hand how struggling with mental health issues can devastate families and friendships. What we hope to achieve through this campaign is to encourage men and women to speak out and to ask for the help and support that they need.
Louise Montgomery, Manager of Strand Foyer, praised the two residents commenting:
Everyone at Strand Foyer is very proud of Oisin and Martin and what they have achieved. They are both driven and determined young men with a clear focus on helping others. Their video is so powerful and the campaign will undoubtedly help other young people to open up about their own mental health struggles.
Watch the ‘Man Down’ film below (please note: the film features strong language).
For more information about the campaign, contact Verbal on 028 7126 6946.