Secondary schools and colleges across the region are being invited to take part in a mental health campaign to raise awareness and funds for the new children and adolescent mental health service (CAMHS) unit being built in Hull.
Coinciding with Children’s Mental Health Week (4-10 February), head teachers will be receiving boxes from Health Stars, the charity for Humber Teaching NHS Foundation Trust, which contain a host of mental health resources and sets each school a challenge to help raise money for the unit.
The campaign is part of the charity’s Impact Appeal for the new unit which launched last year with the aim of raising £600,000 to add enhancements to the building which will be vital to young people coping with complex, and often severe, mental health conditions.
This latest campaign ‘By Young People, For Young People’, aims to ensure the topic of mental health is openly discussed and nurtured within school settings and the curriculum.
Michele Moran, Chief Executive of Humber Teaching NHS Foundation Trust said: “Work on the CAMHS project is going fantastic and we are thrilled with the support the Impact Appeal has received from surrounding communities so far.
“The next stage of the journey, engaging with schools and young people, is very important and we are delighted that promoting and educating our local children about mental health is a high priority for our educational institutes.
“The more work we can do normalising a conversation around mental health, the more we break down the stigma and let people of all ages know that it’s ok to talk.”
The challenge set for schools is to fill their boxes, kindly donated by Garthwest Ltd, with things for the new unit, giving pupils the opportunity to learn more and fundraise for this much needed service.
All kinds of donations are welcomed from money raised by a dedicated non-school uniform day to artwork, poetry or positive messages of support which could be displayed at the unit.
Anouska Gardner, Vice Principal at Aspire Academy said: “We’re pleased to be taking part in this campaign because we know first-hand the impact it will have on our young people.
“Our students come from a variety of backgrounds and in many cases, can feel pushed out of society, so being part of something bigger and getting involved in fundraising or local campaigns can have a really positive effect.
“We’re also very conscious that some of the students we work with may need to access this new unit, so if we can help reduce the stress and stigma of that then we absolutely will.”
Paul Warwick, Clinical Lead for the Clinical Lead CAMHS Inpatient Service said: “Throughout this project we have listened to young people and with their support, we will create an excellent new unit.
“We are aware that this new service gives us a chance to change the way society thinks about young people’s mental health and involving schools will help take this message to a much larger group of young people.
“The idea of having artwork on display in the unit which is both created and funded by young people, I think, is an amazing way to involve all parts of the community in what we are doing.”
For more information about Health Stars and the Impact Appeal, please contact Clare Woodard on 01482 389103 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
[Amy Smith – Humber Teaching NHS Foundation Trust]