To give a feeling what a mental coaching team can mean for a diving federation, three references are given below:
Unfortunately, I have needed to contact the mental coaching team several times. A first time for two members who went into cardiovascular syncope. The MCT provided support to the members who needed it and were involved in the resuscitation. Together with the mayor, they were a good support when dealing with the press. There were two support sessions then, one shortly after the incident, the next one held on later with many members. The members and the victims who fortunately had not suffered any consequences then discussed the incident. Everyone was able to share their experiences and as a club we have taken a number of points from this to avoid incidents in the future.
A second time for a fatal diving accident. The fellow divers and the family were brought together in a limited group. Both the family and the fellow divers were very pleased with the initiative. It was the moment for the fellow divers to explain to the next of kin what had happened. The fellow divers and relatives did not know each other and were not very well informed about diving. Despite the loss, the family greatly appreciated this and it certainly contributed to the subsequent processing. Personally, I also assisted the relatives in delivering documents to the insurance and communication between the fellow divers, the person who found him, the management of the recreation facility, the police and the public prosecutor’s office. Only this last point is not clear due to the new law on privacy.
If I deal with people who have nothing to do with diving, I tell them about mental coaching team, and often look at what our federation is doing. Keep it up!
As far as our club is concerned, the tragic accident of … is fading a bit, but of course we never forget!
We also still have a very positive contact with … ‘s wife. Next week is our annual club party, and we still invite her. This year she has again registered as one of the first!
To summarize everything, we can say that we have had tremendous support from your listening ear.
Both individually or in a club context, we really benefitted from your commitment, with a listening ear, an encouraging conversation.
In short, IT’S GREAT THAT YOU WERE THERE FOR US !!!!
And once again a big, big thank you for your pressure-free commitment, for all of us.
In fact, we may not have received individual supervision, but that is how it felt.
I have seen you in action twice, once with …, and once during our two star internship
It was a consolation anyway that someone (the federation, you, etc.) was ready, even if it was just to encourage us to talk about things. Maybe even a slight pressure to do this (and this is meant in a positive way: a catalyst as it were). After that a large part has to come from ourselves. I think this is a good guide.
Regarding “individual” or not: a diving school / club and its members are also an individual. Throwing in the group sometimes leads to surprising questions about issues that concern individuals and that we as a group or those involved might not think about.
As an example, I would dare to mention the incident at the session in the cafeteria (death of …) in which the daughter wondered what had happened to her father’s diving suit. Perhaps something trivial for many, but not for her. A second case that I think is worth considering.
Support in difficult times, at crucial moments, is essential for volunteers who have to do something difficult. This may not have been something that you personally attended to, but it gave us support (and quite a lot!) and could serve as an example for support: when I, and … went to bring the difficult news to the family, there was someone there from the police trauma team. The fact that we could just go into the background at first and then provide explanations and (meager) comfort already helped us over an immense barrier (literally and figuratively).