Make sure no one has to face a mental health problem alone give here

Your account

News

Share a Smile - promoting kindness, wellbeing and combating stigma

Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2019, 6.13am

Share a Smile

Share a Smile has been developed and designed by the young people involved. Here they describe the work.

Who are we?

We are a group of sixth form students (Ullswater Community College, Queen Elizabeth Grammar School, Appleby Grammar School and Kirkby Stephen Grammar) based in Eden, working alongside Carlisle Eden Mind, who aim to increase young people and the wider community’s understanding of positive mental health and the impact everyone can have on this by sharing kindness with each other.

What is our aim?

Share a Smile aims to make a positive change to the emotional wellbeing and mental health of the Eden community. Our primary goal is simple; we hope to raise awareness of how a simple act of kindness can improve the emotional wellbeing of ourselves and those around us. Share a Smile will also encourage our schools and local community organisations to join us and help raise awareness of young people’s mental health, reduce stigma and improve wellbeing.

Who’s enabled us to do this?

Share a Smile has been funded by Eden Local Committee’s Children and Young People’s Working Group which is part of Cumbria County Council. Members of the Children and Young People’s Working Group meet regularly to discuss issues relating to young people in Eden. The group works strategically to support the development of activities that contribute to the health and wellbeing of children and young people. Following discussion with Public Health Nurses, Active Cumbria and Carlisle Eden Mind, Eden Local Committee has set up and funded this project to increase the emotional resilience of children and young people in Eden.
The Chair of the Young People’s Working Group is councillor Phil Dew – contact phil.dew@cumbria.gov.uk

Share a smile will:

1. Help to make mental health a more approachable subject in Eden through helping increase people’s understanding of the power of kindness on our mental health and demonstrate this be inspiring the community to share Random Acts of Kindness.

2. Encourage organisations, such as schools, to take action to help raise awareness of children’s mental health, reduce stigma and improve children’s wellbeing

3. Offer Youth Mental Health First Aid training for students and staff members from each secondary school thereby building teacher, school staff and young people’s skills, knowledge and confidence to support young people’s mental health in order to become Youth Mental Health Champions [YMHCs]. Over the period of the project, YMHC’s will aim to develop awareness-raising, anti-stigma and information campaigns to promote positive mental health, reduce stigma, and offer signposting to support.

How do we hope to make this positive change?

In the first phase, we will receive Youth Mental Health First Aid training from Carlisle Eden Mind which will qualify us to act as ‘Youth Mental Health Champions’ in our schools and wider communities. As Youth MHFA Champions, we will have a better understanding of common mental health issues and how they can affect our friends and peers. In addition, we will have an increased knowledge and confidence to advocate for and raise mental health awareness, helping us to reduce stigma and improve the mental health of those around us.

Over the spring and summer months, we will work with our own schools and Eden primaries to encourage them to take action to help raise awareness of children’s mental health, through supporting their school communities (pupils, staff and parents) to carry out Random Acts of Kindness.

Our main event will be sharing a Random Act of Kindness week with our local Eden community, where as a group we will demonstrate and inspire the Eden community to receive and share Random Acts of Kindness.

We will continue until the end of 2019 and will aim to develop awareness-raising, anti-stigma and information campaigns to promote positive mental health, reduce stigma and offer signposting to support.

Share a Smile has been developed and designed by the young people involved, working alongside the project's lead Lynsey Eland from Carlisle Eden Mind.

For more information on our work with young people follow this link or contact Lynsey via lynsey.eland@cemind.org

Find this story and more in our news archive.

News Archive

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter