The Mental Health Foundation offers a peer education programme for Year 7 pupils delivered by their 6th Form peers.
The Peer Education Project provided by the Mental Health Foundation provides a five session syllabus to all Year 7 pupils delivered by 6th form peers. It is based on the principle that young people are more likely to listen and respond to older peers than to adults. It is usually delivered through the personal, social, health, economic (PSHE) programme but has been delivered through tutorial classes.
What does the peer education project teach?
The Foundation initially trained 6th form pupils directly. They are now training teachers to deliver this aspect of the training in order to extend the approach as far as possible:
- The project introduces mental health as something that we all have, like physical health.
- It encourages students to think about ways to stay well, how to seek help and support friends.
- It also introduces common myths around mental health, and the stigma and discrimination people experience as a result.
The Project has had an initial evaluation of outcomes undertaken by the Anna Freud Centre. Schools have reported improvements in knowledge and skills and a better understanding of the potential stigma associated with mental health problems.
The Project has been delivered in 35 schools so far, including schools in several areas of London. They are aiming to expand the programme and are looking for new schools to join the project.
The cost to schools is a one off fee of £150.00.