Like most professional rugby union players, Matt Hodgson grew up idolising the tough demeanour and physical strength of his sporting heroes.
During his professional career, Matt played for the Wallabies, captained Super Rugby team the Western Force, and became the first player to play 100 caps for the club – certainly proving his strength on the field.
Like any elite sportsperson, he experienced the highs and lows of a professional sporting career, and was aware of how important the support of team mates, family and friends is.
But it was only when his father dealt with a dark period in his life, that Matt decided to make it a mission to share the philosophy of Livin organisation – It ain’t weak to speak.
“A few years ago my dad had his third stroke, and went through a depressive state, which got me on this path to be involved with mental health and the charity Livin,” says Matt.
Now having retired from playing professional rugby, he is very keen to defeat the stigma that it’s weak for a man to share how he is feelings. He works closely with Livin, running workshops at schools and corporate organisations, to help break the stigma around talking about mental health issues.
“My reason is it ain’t weak to speak. If I can live by that motto or that mantra I hope others can.”
Livin is all about living your life at the top and breaking the stigma of mental health. Connecting, supporting and encouraging one another to talk about their feelings and challenges. Through the development of cutting edge education programs, trendy fashion apparel and cool awareness initiatives, Livin hopes to launch a generational change.
Learn more about Livin and donate here to help bring Matt’s reason to life.