Celebrating Mental Health Awareness Week
This week we have been supporting Mental Health Awareness Week, an annual campaign hosted by the Mental Health Foundation aimed at raising the profile of issues related to mental health and encouraging conversations around wellbeing.
The event signifies an important opportunity for the sector to reflect on the growing impact mental health is having on learners and staff. With more than 80% of teachers reporting a deterioration in mental health amongst students in the past two years, it’s clear that more needs to be done to tackle this growing crisis and provide educators with the skills and resources needed to support those within their care.
According to research from the Mental Health Foundation, 1 in 10 children aged 5-16 have a diagnosable mental health condition. However, unfortunately 70% of children who experience these issues do not receive appropriate interventions at a sufficiently early age.
Pressures of modern society including social media may have contributed to this crisis with the ‘picture-perfect’ images and lives portrayed online having a worrying impact on young people’s self-esteem and body image. Last year, the Mental Health Foundation found that 1 in 3 people have felt so stressed by body image and appearance that they felt overwhelmed or unable to cope.
Recent figures from the Children’s Commissioner highlighted that a third of areas in England are reducing real-term spending on vital mental health services. This means that teachers and other staff working in education settings are being relied upon more and more to provide front-line counselling and mental health support to children and young people.
Not only is this impacting their already stretched workloads, many practitioners unfortunately have not been equipped with the skills and training required to deal with these difficult issues. In turn, this additional pressure is having an impact on the mental health and stress levels of teachers – a vicious circle which needs to be broken. With a recent study reporting that teachers are more likely to suffer job-related stress than other professions, experts warned there is urgent action required to address the pressures of teaching.
We are supporting the initiative to make young people’s mental health a priority and aim to put a spotlight on the growing need for mental health support for teachers.
There is a vital need for all education practitioners to have the skills to recognise and support young people within their settings. As we know, early intervention is vital when it comes to mental health and problems will only get worse if they’re not identified and addressed. Having the skills to spot early enough when someone is in need can make all the difference.
We have worked in collaboration with health experts including the NHS and mental health charity, Mind, to develop a range of high quality qualifications designed to help educators and individuals support mental wellbeing, and learn how to identify warning signs for mental ill-health. As well as raising awareness and understanding of issues, CACHE qualifications dispel some of the myths and misconceptions frequently linked to mental health.
Find out more about CACHE mental health qualifications by visiting qualhub.co.uk
In the build up to mental health awareness week, we spoke to an inspiring individual who opened up about his personal mental health journey. Hear Joe’s story and the positive impact high quality mental health support has had on his life.