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Gather ’round, team! Coach Lasso has an important message to share. On March 20, Jason Sudeikis and the cast of “Ted Lasso” — including Hannah Waddingham, Brett Goldstein, Toheeb Jimoh, and Brendan Hunt — joined President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden at the White House to spread a message of “positivity, hope, kindness, and empathy,” inspired by the administration’s ongoing commitment to mental health.
Stepping up to the podium, Sudeikis embodied the heart of the fictional AFC Richmond coach as he spoke on the importance of checking in with loved ones and being supportive of their needs. “No matter who you are, no matter where you live, no matter who you voted for, we all know someone — or had been that someone ourselves, actually — that’s struggled, that’s felt isolated, that felt anxious, that’s felt alone,” Sudeikis said following an introduction by Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre. “It’s actually one of the many things that, believe it or not, we all have in common as human beings.”
“Check in with your neighbor, your coworker, your friends, your family, and ask how they’re doing and listen sincerely.”
He continued, “[Mental health] is something that we can all, and should, talk about with one another when we’re feeling that way or when we recognize that in someone feeling that way. We encourage everyone — and this is a big theme of the show — to check in with your neighbor, your coworker, your friends, your family, and ask how they’re doing and listen sincerely.”
While seeking mental health resources and support can be intimidating, Sudeikis encouraged everyone listening to confide in those they trust, whether it be a professional or a loved one. “While it’s easier said than done, we also have to know that we shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help ourselves,” he said. “That does take a lot, especially with something that has such a negative stigma to it such as mental health. It doesn’t need to be that way.”
In developing the show about a fictional Premier League soccer team, Sudeikis and his team behind the scenes have created a world where leading with kindness and holding space for others is not only essential but achievable. “I truly believe that we should all do our best to take care of each other,” he added. For Sudeikis, this is a message that rings true on and off screen. “I just want to emulate these make-believe folks we all play at AFC Richmond and the way they take care of one another,” he said. “That is the wish fulfillment of this show.”