THE MELBOURNE Football Club is excited to announce its new health and wellbeing program ‘Every Heart Beats True’.
The education program is designed to encourage and inspire school students to take positive action when it comes to their own health and wellbeing.
The Demons players have begun communicating this message to kids, with co-captain Nathan Jones saying he can already see the benefits of the club’s work.
“I think educating kids these days from a young age about resilience and finding happiness and joy in the smallest of things is really important,” Jones told Melbourne Media.
“There’s a lot of social pressures and expectations on kids and I think it’s important that we allow them to develop and enjoy themselves.
“That’s probably the message we push about having fun and doing things you love.
“And being able to recognise a lot of the good things that go on even at times when people may see it as doom and gloom.”
Over the past two weeks, the Melbourne players have visited a range of schools in regional areas and Jones said he enjoyed touching on some important areas with his young fans.
“We’ve had a couple of sessions with the community camp where we did classroom talks,” he said.
“Myself and Oskar Baker were together and we did a couple of classes on leadership, a couple of classes on healthy eating and a couple of classes on gratitude.”
These AFL players are the perfect role models to be communicating these important messages as they have built up a strong knowledge around health and wellbeing during their careers.
“It’s pretty easy for us, we talk about our own experiences and there’s some great material and exercises for the kids to get involved in to help educate them,” Jones said.
“And then we opened the floor to questions and answers which takes off in any direction, but I think we get the message across and the kids get a lot out of it.”
A major part of the Every Heart Beats True program has been the release of the gratitude journals which the Demons players have been sharing with students during their community camp.
These journals provide the kids with an opportunity to document their thoughts and reflect on key moments throughout the year.
“It was my first experience with the gratitude journals and I thought they were terrific,” Jones said.
“I actually pinched a couple and took them home for my two kids.
“That was probably my favourite workshop and I think teaching gratitude is an important thing about appreciating what people have from the smallest to the biggest of things.”