New mental wellbeing programme for Suffolk children moves a step closer
Work on a new mental wellbeing programme for children in Saxmundham and all of Suffolk has moved a step closer this week, thanks to thousands of pounds being raised for it.
During their annual Christmas collections, The Rotary Club of Saxmundham and District raised £2,250.00 for EARLY Minds (Emotional Awareness & Resilience Learnt Young), which is run by Suffolk Mind.
The pilot project uses the power of storytelling to teach children in local primary schools about their emotional needs and enable them to learn new skills to look after their mental health.
Owen Lower, President of the Rotary Club says “We chose EARLY Minds as a project; it was born out of one of our members having first hand knowledge of a difficulty with a young person experiencing mental health and emotional problems”.
He continued, “The club had no difficulty in nominating Suffolk Mind for our main charity. We sadly recognise that mental health and wellbeing in young people is, in a lot of cases, high profile in some families”.
The cheque was presented to Suffolk Mind during Children’s Mental Health Week, launched by the Duchess of Cambridge on Monday 5th February. During the awareness week, children and young people are being encouraged to celebrate their uniqueness and open up about their feelings.
Figures show that four in ten 11-year-old girls worry about their body image “some or most of the time” and one in ten 11-year-olds get less than 6 hours sleep a night.
Jon Neal, chief executive of Suffolk Mind, said: “The mental health of our children should be a concern of everyone. We all have emotional needs that must be met in order to stay well, and that’s just as true of primary school pupils as it is of adults.
“By using stories to teach them about these emotional needs, we can help prevent mental ill health from occurring in the first place. We can also help them use skills such as 7/11 breathing to calm down when they are feeling emotional, helping them to think more clearly and make good decisions.
“The support and fundraising efforts of rotary clubs such as Saxmundham and District is crucial to helping us work with as many children as possible in the local area.”