Well-Being and Mental Health
Welcome to the wellbeing page. Mental Health and Wellbeing are a high priority at Cambourne VC. Here is a quick rundown of work we are focusing on this academic year;
- As a staff group, we will be starting a three year, Trust Wide Mental Health training - Cam Academy Trust Wellbeing Framework. This training is bespoke to our school and delivered through a series of workshops and training events by the YHA.
- Wellbeing research project lead by Cambridge Uni Psychologist and Researcher Tania Clarke. Tania has been working with a large group of Year 11 to analyse the impact of lockdown on learning. She has also visited the school to deliver Wellbeing workshops to pupils
- We have re-established mentoring scheme for pupils. Heads of Year refer pupils who are then partnered with staff mentors who will offer some intensive support to address targets and develop strategies with pupils.
- Our Wellbeing prefect team will follow an online training course offered by 'The Blurt Foundation'. They will use their knowledge and skills to run workshops for younger pupils and are also hosting lunchtime drop-ins for any pupils who want to chat, play games and seek support.
At Cambourne Village College, our Link facility provides for young people who need support with their mental health. We also provide a Counselling service and employ fully trained, external counsellors who work with our pupils on a referral basis. Our school counsellors are fully qualified and registered with The British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy BACP or The Health and Care Professions Council HCPC. Pupils can self-refer for counselling support or staff can refer them, as per the Social Emotional Mental Health Referral process. Whilst we always encourage pupils to speak to their parents about a request for counselling, parents should be aware that this is offered to those pupils who are considered competent as a confidential service if they so wish.
If you have concerns about your child’s well-being that are non-urgent and need advice you can contact your child’s Head of Year or a member of The Link team. If you feel that your child is unable to cope and is a risk to themselves or other people, seek advice from 111 and dial 2 to get support from mental health teams. If you have an emergency, dial 999 to get immediate support.
Wellbeing for Children and Families
There’s now a section called ‘Explaining the coronavirus to young children’ with resources including a new book by Nosy Crow, illustrated by Axel Scheffler (The Gruffalo); as well as the Children’s Commissioner’s Guide to Coronavirus.
There is also a wonderful resource, created by Strengthening Minds, an organisation based in London. The Strengthening Minds Guide to Staying Home…In Style is a brilliant resource full of ideas, games, activities and resources for families with young children including a section on wellbeing and mindfulness.
There are new things being added to the website all the time, and it can be hard to keep up. So a section called ‘Recently-added’ has been created on the landing page which will tell you what’s been uploaded in the last few days:https://www.cambslearntogether.co.uk/home-learning/hub
Useful contacts and sites:
The Blurt Foundation:
Blurt It Out has a "coronavirus helpful hub" with great support for adults, especially parents, at this challenging time. https://www.blurtitout.org/resource/the-coronavirus-helpful-hub#parenting.
Chathealth is a confidential texting service run by the School Nursing Team (NHS). Their number is 07480635443
You can contact Childline about anything and everything and they have lots of useful tips and advice online, including on keeping calm. Their website is https://www.childline.org.uk/get-support/ and their number is 0800 1111. There is also an email section on their website.
Kooth has online support and there are staff available to talk to Mon-Fri 12pm-10m and Sat-Sun 6pm-10pm. Kooth also have lots of useful articles written by young people and a journal section. https://www.kooth.com/
https://youngminds.org.uk/ Young Minds also have an urgent care text service and you text YM to 85258
Other Websites and Apps
What does Mindfulness mean?
Mindfulness means being present and aware of your actions in the moment whilst calmly acknowledging thoughts, feelings and senses.
Why might Mindfulness be useful to try?
Mindfulness focuses on activities you can do to help promote calmness. Mindfulness also looks at ways we can think and be aware of everyday activities. During a challenging time, some of these exercises may be useful to try, whether they are part of your daily routine or a conscious effort to complete a mindful activity.
Mind UK have created some ideas and examples of mindful exercises such as:
- Mindful eating. This involves paying attention to the taste, sight and textures of what you eat. For example, when drinking a cup of tea or coffee you could focus on how hot and liquid it feels on your tongue, how sweet it tastes or watch the steam that it gives off.
- Mindful moving, walking or running. Notice the feeling of your body moving. You might notice the breeze against your skin, the feeling of your feet or hands against different textures on the ground or nearby surfaces, and the different smells that are around you.
- The mindful body scan. This is where you move your attention slowly through different parts of the body, starting from the top of your head moving all the way down to the end of your toes. You could focus on feelings of warmth, tension, tingling or relaxation of different parts of your body.
- Mindful colouring and drawing. Focus on the colours and the sensation of your pencil against the paper, rather than trying to draw something in particular. You could use a mindfulness colouring book or download mindfulness colouring images.
- Mindful meditation. This involves sitting quietly and focusing on your breathing, your thoughts, sensations in your body and the things you can hear around you. Try to bring you focus back to the present if your mind starts to wander. Many people also find that yoga helps them to concentrate on their breathing and focus on the present moment.
Mindfulness can feel like an abstract concept and there are some really helpful YouTube videos to help you understand and explore Mindfulness further such as:
PE with Joe