A recent survey capturing the views of children and young people across Liverpool is set to help shape mental health support and services in the city.
Mental health has been a major concern for everyone during the pandemic – especially the impact on our youngest residents.
To better understand what’s been happening, Liverpool City Council and Liverpool CCG alongside health and education partners in the city collaborated with the University of Oxford to roll out the ‘OxWell survey’ to children and young people aged nine to 18 years old.
The anonymous survey asked children and young people a range of questions about their lives - covering topics such as eating and sleeping, physical activity, mental health and wellbeing and their experience of lockdown.
Around 12,000 children and young people responded to the survey, and Children’s Mental Health week has presented a perfect opportunity to highlight the importance of hearing their voices.
£1m is being invested in a series of projects and initiatives, supported by School Improvement Liverpool and Oxford University – providing guidance and practical help on keeping children and young people safe and happy. This is in addition to existing increased NHS investment to support improved access to mental health services, given the rise in demand during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Children in primary schools and special schools will participate in a series of live wellbeing sessions hosted by the Liverpool Learning Partnership as part of the city’s approach to mental health. These sessions are to be delivered by Liverpool’s Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) partner, Merseyside Youth Association's RAISE Team.
Throughout the week, members of the CAMHS Partnership will also be running a range of wellbeing events in schools and in the local community – including workshops and group activities for children and young people of all ages.
A range of support and help is also available for parents and carers on the Liverpool CAMHS website, including how to make a referral to CAMHS at www.liverpoolcamhs.com/parents-carers/
To mark Children’s Mental Health week (7-13 February) civic buildings in Liverpool will be lit up green.
Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, Cllr Tom Logan said, “One of our top priorities is ensuring the mental health and emotional wellbeing of our children and young people is supported, enabling them to flourish in their education. I’m immensely proud of everyone who has shared their experiences about their school life – they are now helping develop the type of support that will be available in the future.”
Director of Public Health for Liverpool, Matt Ashton said “It’s really important we listen and understand how our children and young people are feeling. Mental health is not static - at any one time a child or young person may be anywhere on a spectrum of wellness. The pandemic has thrown into the mix, disruption to potential coping strategies, limited access to support and for many introduced further emotional challenges.”
Programme Manager for Children and Young People’s Mental Health at NHS Liverpool CCG, Lisa Nolan said: “Ensuring children, young people and their families know there is support available is key. Whether it is advice on self-care, support if they feel low, anxious, stressed, or in crisis, The Liverpool CAMHS partnership – a combination of NHS providers, education and third sector agencies – are here to help.”
To find out more about what’s happening visit: www.liverpoolcamhs.com/school-news/childrens-mental-health-week-in-liverpool-7-13th-feb/