Elders and Cowboys announce mental health parternship - Elders Rural Services

Elders and Cowboys announce mental health parternship

Elders together with the North Queensland Cowboys have announced a partnership for a new community program targeting mental health.

Elders northern zone general manager Greg Dunne says difficult conditions in the north have increased the need to start conversations and promote mental health services.

“Mental health has a larger impact in Australia than the road toll, with 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men expected to experience anxiety in their lifetime,” Mr Dunne said.

“Those in rural areas are half as likely to access support services as those from metropolitan areas, it’s important to ensure that we bring this important topic to the table and support our work colleagues, clients and friends,” he said.


Elders and the Cowboys have released the first in a series of television adverts and community initiatives over a two year period – aimed at raising awareness and breaking the stigma attached to mental health.

“Many may not be aware that the Cowboys are a community owned, not-for-profit organisation with an award-winning community portfolio comprising of 11 programs,” Mr Dunne said.

This particular campaign is built around the teams that operate at the Cowboys and within Elders, and how individuals can use a team mentality in their day to day life.

Cowboys General Manager – Commercial Business Jeff Reibel said the club was proud to be associated with Elders in delivering the new campaign.

“The Cowboys prides itself on community engagement and we look forward to contributing to improving mental health outcomes, in conjunction with a socially minded business such as Elders,” he said.

The Cowboys have been and remain active on promoting and facilitating positive mental health outcomes, both internally and in the broader community.

The club employs a full-time welfare and education manager and two psychologists to provide support to its players. In addition, Cowboys NRL player Michael Morgan is the club’s State of Mind Ambassador, which is a volunteer role, created to give players’ perspective and input into the NRL’s community programs in the mental health space.

Away from the field, the Cowboys’ Community Department runs a number of programs, with all of them having a mental health component.

The club, in conjunction with sponsors, also runs a Community Hub at home games, with sponsors partnering with a charity to promote healthy living and attempt to wipe out the stigma surrounding mental illness and raise awareness for suicide prevention.

Last year, the club founded the Cowboys Community Foundation, which is its charity arm responsible for delivering several key community programs all aimed and improving education, employment, health and social outcomes for young North Queenslanders through social-based programs.

Last year Elders won the National Safety Council of Australia Foundation Awards of Excellence in the category of Best Communication of a Safety Message, as well as the Judges’ Choice Award for Excellence in Workplace Health and Safety.