WHAT next? Positive things we can do to support our wellbeing

Early Help for Mental Health poster

Early Help for Mental Health 10 a day poster - Credit: Early Help for Mental Health

Since last March school closures and social distancing measures have had a big impact on how children and young people want to spend their time. It is a time of developmental change: physically, mentally and emotionally.

Many studies have shown that teenagers are particularly vulnerable to poor mental health and wellbeing during the pandemic. Recently children and young people will have wanted to hang out with their friends and enjoy the build up to festive celebrations. All of us whatever age can identify with that loss of joy over Christmas.
The uncertainty and disruption to normal life continues. We heard this week that schools will be closed until half term except for the most vulnerable children and those whose parents are key workers. Exams will be cancelled in the summer. Children and adults are likely to become more anxious.
I wrote two weeks ago that despite restrictions WHAT (Wellbeing and Health Action Team for the Sid Valley) partners have been supporting children and young people in our schools and youth provision. Many activities are used to help children and young people talk openly about their feelings to increase resilience in children and their families. Work takes place in all Devon schools by EH4MH (Early Help for Mental Health) to develop knowledge of mental health conditions affecting young people and strategies for supporting children with early signs of mental and emotional stress.
An example of this is the 10 a day poster shown here.
Try out the 10 a day idea. I think the advice is good for our wellbeing whatever age we are. You can find more information about EH4MH on the Sid Valley Help website at https://www.sidvalleyhelp.org.uk or at https://www.youngdevon.org/wellbeing/early-help-4-mental-health
For families who are interested, we would like to invite you to a free virtual workshop on the Teenage Brain. The workshop will be held by leaders from the Charlie Waller Trust via Zoom on Tuesday 26th January 7:00 - 8:00pm. If you would like to find out more or join the workshop please email julie.turner@charliewaller.org and she will send you a Zoom link.

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