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Growing Together in Children’s Mental Health Week

Place2Be’s Children’s Mental Health Week takes place on 7-13 February and the theme this year is Growing Together. The week-long event focuses on the importance of mental health in children and young people.

The Pioneer Group’s charitable subsidiary, Compass Support, will be highlighting to children and their families the importance of maintaining good mental health and growing together, especially as up to one in four people will experience mental health issues at some point in their lives.

During the past two years, the pandemic has caused disruptions to schooling and the lockdowns have left many youngsters vulnerable.

This week is a great opportunity for children to take pride in their growth and achievements and look ahead considering what personal qualities and skills they would like to build in the future.

Some tips to bolster a child’s mental health and confidence include assisting your child to identify their strengths and work together on areas for development; this helps by giving them goals to work towards. Families can also motivate and encourage children towards these goals and celebrate a child’s successes, whether big or small. Another tip is to know when to when to challenge capricious behavior and when to hang back and simply listen and empathise with what they may be experiencing.

As Erdington’s ‘Early Help’ lead, Compass Support’s Family Support and Youth Services teams help children, young people and families by connecting them to local services, coaching and community groups for assistance. Schools working with families that need support, can be referred by a family’s support worker.

Compass Support also holds a weekly networking meeting for professionals working with children in the area.

Shamsa Mughal, Support Services Team Leader, Compass Support, said:

Parents play an integral role in nurturing a child’s mental health but in order to do so, they themselves must be in a good place emotionally. Challenges and setbacks can help us to grow and adapt, and trying new things can help us to move beyond our comfort zone into a new realm of possibility and potential. However, emotional growth is often a gradual process that happens over time, and sometimes we might feel a bit ‘stuck’ – and that is okay and normal.

We are always here to support families through challenging times, please do reach out if you’d like some additional help at any point.

Lee Crofts, Youth Team Leader, Compass Support, concluded:

Promoting positive mental health is at the forefront of the work that our Youth Team offers, we have recently developed a community mentoring service that, alongside the traditional referral process, young people will have open access to our mentors during specific youth sessions.  This is also an area close to the hearts of our Young Leaders and they regularly use social action as a tool to raise peer awareness of the subject, and will be delivering an awareness session on Wednesday 9 February in Youth Club.

We have also been successful in gaining funding from The National Lottery to deliver a Mental Health Champions project that will see up to 10 young people gain an accreditation in the subject and become peer mentors within our younger youth sessions.

If parents and professionals notice that their child or a child they know is showing signs of mental health issues, including exhibiting changes in behaviour/mood or increased anxiety, anger or withdrawal, please contact Compass Support for advice and support.

The friendly team here on 0121 748 8111 can be contacted between 9 am – 5 pm on Mondays to Fridays for any advice, support or information.