Growing up as a child in the 1980s, like many mums now, mental health support for children was unheard off. People said things like, cheer-up it may never happen or school days are the best days of your life. There was a view that children were naturally happy, they did not understand things. Adults rarely spoke to children about their problems.
Fortunately things have changed. Child mental health, wellbeing and emotional support. Is now being provided by organisations such as "Hey Lets Talk". It is about talking, about encouraging our children to open up about their issues. By giving them space to be vulnerable we are making them strong. You don't have to solve all their problems, make the bad feelings go away. Simply being there, helps them process these feelings in a supportive environment. Prince Harry famously promotes talking about your feelings in his series "The Me You Can't See". After the effect the death of his mother Princess Diana, had on him as a child.
“If children are preoccupied, if they are worried about their security, their safety. How they belong, they are not free to be curious about the wider world. Not being curious impacts negatively upon how they concentrate and learn.” Philippa Perry Child Psychologist
Many charities and organisation exist around the U.K, so if you are worried your child is struggling. We spoke to Emma Shaw from the charity "Hey!" about what she does and why children do indeed benefit from mental health support.
The charity was established in 2014 and it is based in Barnsley, South Yorkshire. We support children and young people aged 5 -18 with low level mental health issues. Including, depression, anxiety, and stress. We have qualified, wellbeing practitioners, counsellors, and play therapists. Plus, we have volunteers that support us too. We offer, one to one's, group sessions, face to face, online support and school visits.
We make a real difference to children and young people’s lives in supporting them. To make sense of their emotions and feelings. Giving them skills to help build their emotional resilience and mental wellbeing.
Helping to support children and young people. That can’t express their feelings and emotions appropriately is key. These behaviours can sometimes be seem anger, becoming introvert, being depressed, becoming stressed. Children and young people go through many transitions and experiences in their lives. Plus going through the pandemic has influenced this massively. Children and young people need a safe space to speak with professionally trained adults. Then to work together with parents/carers. To help them manage their emotions and feelings. Giving children and young people coping strategies. Helps them regulate their emotions and feelings. Helping them cope with everyday challenges.
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