The spotlight is shining on mental health and emotional wellbeing like never before. And with good reason.
The stats are alarming, especially as parents.
1 in 8 children have a diagnosable mental health disorder, that’s about 3 children in every classroom. 50% of all mental health problems appear before age of 14; 3 in 4 children with a diagnosable mental health condition don’t get access to support they need.
There’s a “steep rise” (68%) in self harm among teenage girls aged 13 to 16 years. Research shows children who self-harm have ‘especially noticeable increases in risks of suicide and fatal acute alcohol or drug poisoning’.
Over 200 children are lost to suicide every year, it is the biggest killer of young people in the UK. It’s also the leading killer of men under the age of 50. 1 in 3 adult mental health conditions relate directly to adverse childhood experiences; half of all mental health problems manifest by the age of 14 & 75% by age 24.
Yet, less than 1% of the total NHS budget is spent on children and young people’s mental health services. The government is working hard to improve this with large injections of funding.
However with 157,000 missed CAMHS appointments in 2016 costing the NHS over £45million (source: The Children’s Society based on Freedom of Information data obtained from NHS mental health trusts) and from numerous other reports highlighting issues, it’s clear that the current system is not working.
The system to bring about the mass change we desperately need has yet to be created.
Here at The Holding Collective we are committed to ending the stigma around mental health/ emotional wellbeing and we’re passionate about orchestrating mass change. We believe to be effective this change has to start with children, young people and their families.
Acknowledging and supporting the emotional needs of children is absolutely essential to the healthy wellbeing of young people and the adults they develop into. It can positively impact the whole of their lives.
Early intervention in a school setting is therefore, for us, an essential ‘no-brainer’:
- Embeds emotional wellbeing in the system
- Provides support from a young age
- Is very easily accessed, increasing the likelihood of success
Research from a study in the US shows children who did sessions at school had a 91% completion rate compared to just 15% for those who had to be taken to a clinic every week.
Our work is based on a fantastic (‘relatively cheap and very effective’) award-winning therapeutic services model for schools that has been successfully piloted over four years, in a State Primary School in north London . The dream is to roll it out everywhere.
The model features in the latest BBC “People Fixing the World” podcast.
Whole school support (including 40 children having a weekly session with a therapist onsite) costs circa £8,000 plus the salary of the Pastoral Care Officer/ Wellbeing Manager.
With no referrals to CAMHS and no exclusions, the results are impressive.