Children’s Mental Health Week (CMHW) takes place from 6 to 12 February with the theme Let’s Connect, and councillors Peter Mason and Kamaljit Kaur Nagpal took the opportunity to connect with pupils at St Vincent’s school in Acton.
The school is using this week to create meaningful, rewarding connections and explore ways to encourage a positive outlook and sense of wellbeing amongst their pupils. The leader of Ealing Council, Councillor Peter Mason said: “It was lovely to meet the staff and children at St Vincent’s, and to participate in a ‘Teddy Time’ meditation session with the nursery class. This week is about everyone learning to take better care of their mental health and the people around them. Connecting with other people is a great way to do that, as connection is vital to our happiness and wellbeing.
“This Children’s Mental Health Week is a time to get involved in activities to enhance mental health and make new connections.”
CMHW takes place this week was started by the charity Place2Be in 2015, it is committed to exploring and understanding children’s and young people’s mental health.
Place2Be share online activity ideas and top tips for parents, schools and organisations to enhance mental health and wellbeing and create healthy connections with the children and young people around you. The charity share arts, sports, meditation and volunteering activity ideas on their website for the week ahead.
St Vincent’s started last week with a connection assembly, assistant head of inclusion, Claire Hatfield said: “Children’s Mental Health Week helps the children to understand their own and others’ mental health and why it is so important to look after their own wellbeing. It helps the children to reflect on strategies they already use and participate in new activities to promote positive wellbeing and mental health.”
As well as the teddy meditation session that Cllrs Mason and Nagpal joined, the school are running a wide range of activities this week including a yoga morning, mindfulness colouring, feelings circles and a hula hoop connections activity – where the children stand in a circle and pass the hoop from one person to the other, without breaking the circle.
Other initiatives include a new weekly coaching session for the whole school and training year five pupils to be Wellbeing Champions. They will also be running a coffee morning for parents to help them recognise and manage childhood anxiety.
Councillor Kamaljit Nagpal, cabinet member for a fairer start said: “This is a week to make a difference and create a positive community, where young people have the chance to participate and contribute, and understand the value of belonging.”
Visit the Place2Be resource centre here
Please visit our website here for more information on children’s mental wellbeing
The Circle crisis café provides mental health support for the under 18s and is situated at 46 South Ealing Rd, for drop-in services and by appointment. Find out more about the Circle café for mental health.