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Dorset MP's urged to support mental health eduation

mental health education 2

8:35am 6th November 2017
(Updated 8:51am 6th November 2017)

Local charity Dorset Mind is urging our MPs to support compulsory mental health education in a Commons debate today.

It comes after a petition was started by national and global charity The Shaw Mind Foundation and has gained over 100,000 signatures.

They say it is vital young people understand that maintaining good mental health is just as important as their physical wellbeing, and that they know how to access the support they might need.

Currently mental health is only taught as an optional component of personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) education. Dorset Mind believes that this isn't good enough.

Ken Heap, Dorset Mind's chair of trustees said: "The endorsement of Dorset's MPs could make a massive impact on the young people of Dorset and Dorset Mind's ability to support them with their mental health."

It coincides with their 'Dorset Mind Your Head' campaign. The aim is to fundraise money for a new programme that will do three things:

-           It will work with schools to normalise conversations about emotions and mental health. These activities will explain emotions, explain when emotions can develop into mental health problems and convey the message that it is OK to talk about emotions and mental health.

-           It will expand its education programmes within schools and other places that young people spend time. These activities will teach pupils about mental health and how to stay mentally healthy and build resilience, they will educate young people about how to spot a mental health problem. And they will teach them about how to start a conversation and seek help if problems arise.

-           It will develop a new range of services designed to address the mental health difficulties of as many younger people in Dorset as it can.

Patron Dr Mayers said: "Mental health education needs to be compulsory. Understanding mental health is an absolute life skill, and should be just as fundamental within the school curriculum as reading and writing. There needs to be a compulsory collaboration and integration between mental health education and physical education, so that children and young people can understand that maintaining good mental health is equally vital to their wellbeing."

CEO Marianne Storey added: "This level of education is the only way we can tackle stigma effectively and relieve the enormous pressure on teachers, a stretched school curriculum, mental health social workers, the NHS and Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAHMS), which will be hugely advantageous for the UK economy in the decades to come. Educating the next generation about mental illness will also aid us massively in normalising conversations about mental health conditions, eliminating stigma and encouraging not just acceptance, but positivity about the subject."


For more information click on the links below:






Should mental health education be made compulsory in schools?

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