Mental Health Awareness Week- Peer Education Project

Last year, we began working with Mental Health Foundation on our Peer Education Project and we’re now one of their flagship schools for this programme.

Below are some comments from students taking part in the Peer Education Project.

 

Comments from Students taking part in Peer Education Project 2017

For the last two years, each summer term, fifteen Lower Sixth students have volunteered to deliver lessons to small groups of First Year students on maintaining good mental health. This is part of an initiative from Mental Health Foundation, a charity supporting and researching mental health in the UK – and the home of Mental Health Awareness Week. The Peer Education Project grew out of an observation that young people benefit from engaging with older students when exploring healthy ways to deal with teenage pressures.

This initiative proved to be great fun, and very well-received but First Years and Lower Sixth alike. The Sixth Form students benefitted from ten hours of training from psychologists at Mental Health Foundation, who also provided the content and materials of the lessons. Sixth Formers grew in confidence and in their own understanding of mental health issues; First Years enjoyed learning from older students, and developed some clear strategies for staying on an even emotional keel.

Here are some comments from last years’ students:

Lower Sixth comments:

I know a lot more about mental health after doing the training, and from the lessons too – you had to go back to the notes and the training manual

At the end of the final lesson, we got them to write comments and questions on post-it notes and stick them on a board. It was really good to see them supporting each other and answering each other’s questions.

The First Years engaged so much in the lessons, and I learnt so much from it too

It was so great to do this with First Years. Godolphin has that sense of community that I haven’t really found anywhere else, and this sort of thing brings it about

For us, and for the First Years, it’s just really good to know that these things are being discussed

The First Years also taught us something – that you can learn from other people, you don’t have to be teachers,  they could learn from us!

First Years’ comments

I think it was easier that they were close to our age – they understood our feelings and experiences a bit more

I really enjoyed learning about what mental health is, and how we can help ourselves and  each other

It’s not something that people should ignore, it’s something everyone should helping each other with

Not everyone is the same, everyone’s different and that’s OK

We really think that all years should do this, and know what they can do to help themselves and other people. It’s a really good learning experience, and everyone should do it.

Bethan Ferguson, Careers Adviser and Assistant Head of Sixth Form