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Supporting children and young people's mental health

Buckinghamshire MIND supports people with mental health problems living across Buckinghamshire and East Berkshire. We tackle stigma and discrimination head-on, we help our service users to live safe, purposeful and fulfilled lives, and we strongly believe in their recovery.

The children and young people’s team have been running since 2015; promoting emotional wellbeing in primary and secondary schools. We work with school students, staff and parents taking a whole school approach, sharing mental health awareness, building communication and listening skills and reducing the stigma of mental illness.

We know that 83% of children and young people have reported that their mental health has become a bit or a lot worse owing to the COVID-19 Pandemic (Young Mind Survey March 2020) and this is supported by testimonials from schools.

In anticipation of the heightened need for support we applied to the Innovation Fund to allow us to offer a Steps to Wellbeing club, within 5 primary schools across East Berkshire, to children identified by the school and parents as those who could benefit from the sessions to boost their wellbeing.

The course will aim to share wellbeing strategies in a fun and engaging way providing the opportunity to socialise and build confidence, sharing important messages on mental health, awareness and the support available.

Each of the 5 sessions will have a specific focus which follows the 5 ways to wellbeing why these are important, how we can practice them and how the children can bring them into their everyday lives. Some examples of activities are below:

  • Connect – Team building games, conversation starters and listening skills 
  • Be Active – Dancing, sports, yoga
  • Take notice – mindful colouring, breathing exercises, nature drawing and music
  • Keep Learning – quizzes and fun facts
  • Give – self appreciation, compliments and kindness

Knowing that 20% of mental health problems are established before the age of 14 we believe it’s important that the Steps to Wellbeing club is delivered to Primary school age children allowing these vital lessons about looking after our mental health to be gained early on and carried forward into secondary school and adolescences.

Find out more about us and what we can offer by visiting our website HERE.