During the HeadStart Conference, we were able to speak to several young people about their involvement in the HeadStarters Educational Pathway.
Archie, Angel, Eliza Felix and Eliza are all HeadStarters who have completed the Bronze Award of the pathway and are now starting to use their learning and understanding of mental health to make a positive impact within their school communities. Evie is from a school whose HeadStarters achieved their Gold Award in July.
When asked why they wanted to be a HeadStarter, Archie said “I wanted to do something in school to help people” while Felix and Eliza were chosen by their Head of School because “Miss thought that we were empathetic and could make a difference in the playground”. Some of the children were inspired by their peers like Angel who told us that she “wanted to see what the older HeadStarters had learned and how they’d got their jobs in school”.
Discussing what parts of being a HeadStarter they’ve particularly enjoyed, Evie pointed out that now that she has completed her Bronze Award that “I enjoy helping people and giving them a hand to be happy” as does Mila who said that “I definitely know how to help people now when they’re upset which makes me feel really helpful”.
Archie, Angel and Felix all enjoyed learning new things. Archie told us that “I like all the activities we do and the learning that we get to do”, Angel specifically enjoyed “learning how to deal with different emotions” and Felix has “learned a lot about mental health”.
Felix went on to say that he has noticed a big change in his understanding of mental health and how he interacts with his peers, saying that “I’ve learned lots of things about mental health and I am confident in being able to talk about it with other people”.
Angel has been able to use her learning to keep herself calm and relaxed when faced with challenging moments as she said, “I feel more confident when I’m upset or worried and I don’t get as upset as I used to”.
These HeadStarters have already started to make a positive impact at school through their roles and knowledge of mental health and emotional health. Mila was able to “help my friends when there was a falling out in our friend group” and Evie said that “I’ve been able to help lots of people and work with the rest of the HeadStarters team in my school to look after other children in the playground”.
When thinking about the future and how they will use what they’ve learned as a HeadStarters to make a positive impact going forward Eliza explained that “we’ve made a Mindspace in school and we’re having an assembly to talk about HeadStarters so everyone in school knows they can come to us for help”.
Published: September 8