Week beginning Monday 10 May is National Mental Health Awareness Week 2021. The Bay Learning Trust is committed to training 4 members of staff per school to be Mental Health champions, for both pupils and staff.
After completing an MHFA England online course, Ripley St Thomas CE Academy staff Mr P Wilson, Mrs Marshall-Slater, Mr Quarry and Mrs Taylor (Learning Support- photograph below) have all recently qualified as Mental Health First Aiders for the Ripley community.
MHFAs are trained to offer a deeper understanding of mental health and the factors that can affect people’s wellbeing, including depression, anxiety disorders, eating disorders, psychosis, and substance misuse. As well as spotting triggers and signs of mental health issues, they offer non-judgmental listening, support and early intervention but are also trained to respond to individuals in crisis who may be experiencing suicidal thoughts, self-harming behaviour, panic attacks or reactions to traumatic events.
They offer a strictly confidential listening service and can provide signposting to further help if needed. They do not judge or diagnose, and they hope to reduce the stigma around mental ill health in school communities.
For more information see https://mhfaengland.org/ and https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/campaigns/mental-health-awareness-week