Pupils support mental health campaign

Oakwood High School mental health champions in Rotherham.
Oakwood High School mental health champions in Rotherham.
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School pupils wore yellow clothing earlier this week to show their support of World Mental Health Day and launch a new campaign.

Rotherham Council and NHS partners launched a new campaign on Tuesday aimed at raising awareness of young people’s mental health.

Research shows three children in every classroom have a diagnosable mental health condition.

Called STILL (Stop Think, take Interest, Listen and live Life), the campaign which was developed with young people, asks youngsters to take time to think about their mental health and that of their peers.

Pupils across Rotherham wore yellow as part of the #HelloYellow campaign run by the Young Minds charity, which champions the well-being and mental health of young people.

Many also stayed still for a minute at 9.15am to encourage pupils to think about mental health.

Councillor David Roche, Rotherham Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health, said: “Mental health issues like depression are usually associated with adults, but research clearly shows that young people also suffer with such anxieties.

“That is why we want to encourage young people to take care of their mental health and our campaign will promote positive ways to do this by challenging the stigma which surrounds mental health.

The campaign is being rolled out across all schools in the borough for pupils in year 6 upwards, with resources like pocket reminder cards to help children and young people to think about themselves and each other.

At Oakwood High School in Moorgate, Rotherham, pupils have become mental health champions as part of the campaign.

Headteacher David Naisbitt said: Their role is to be available for other young people to turn to when they need someone to confide in.

“Often children tell each other things they wouldn’t tell an adult, so we want to give them every opportunity to get help if they need it.”