It’s A Goal! < Go back

What they aim to achieve

It’s A Goal! aims to:

  • reduce social isolation and increase social inclusion
  • increase positive mental health and well-being
  • increase employability

What they do

“Be the best you can be.”

It’s A Goal! uses football metaphor and terminology to mirror life events to help clients (called “players”) to explore their personal issues and develop greater confidence and motivation. A key element is goal setting, with ‘players’ encouraged to set (and achieve) short-term and long-term goals.


  • A season of 11 matches:

  • Goalkeeper (match 1) – signing as a player, joining the team, setting goals

  • Defence (4 matches) – roles, team work, support; focus on change and resilience

  • Midfield (4 matches) – linking up and creativity, relaxation, visualisation, communication, motivation, assertiveness

  • Attack (2 matches) – opportunities, perspectives and behaviours, practising techniques, evaluating success

  • 10-12 players per season, run in football stadia, facilitated by a Coach

  • Supporters’ club – drop-in facility


  • Treat men as individuals – a gendered approach.

  • The stigma of mental illness is different for men.

  • Services need a more sophisticated and nuanced approach.

  • The role of third parties, especially life partners and male friends, is critical.

  • A joined-up approach is needed for “whole-life” solutions.

What difference does it make?

Reduced social isolation and increased social inclusion:

  • 25% will have greater participation in meaningful social activities

  • 25% will feel less isolated

Increased positive mental health and well-being:

Where they operate

  • Blackpool
  • Preston
  • Rochdale
  • Salford

Who is eligible

Adults with low confidence/self-esteem and mild to moderate depression and/or anxiety, who want to make a change.

Who invests in them

Commissioned by:

  • Blackpool Council
  • Greater Preston Clinical Commissioning Group
  • Heywood, Middleton and Rochdale Clinical Commissioning Group
  • Salford City Council (Public Health)


“It put me back on the pitch of life. Before, I was outside the ground, listening to the crowd, then I was on the subs’ bench, and now I’ve got a game!” (player)