FOR SCHOOLS: HOW TO GET INVOLVED
Do you think your pupils would benefit from additional mental health education? Then Open Minds workshops might be the answer!
ABOUT OPEN MINDS
Open Minds is a student-run initiative which started in 2009 at UCL Medical School. The programme trains university students (volunteers) in the basics of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (led by psychiatrists) across several topics:
Depression & anxiety
Self harm & suicide
The volunteers then receive teacher training and safeguarding training, before going into secondary schools to lead workshops on mental health with young people aged 11-16. Our workshops are completely free and have at present reached over 3500 school students, over 300 university students and upwards of 20 schools.
TARGET GROUPS of pupils
The aim of OpenMinds is to inform pupils about mental health issues, and aid in preventing their development. We decided to deliver our workshops in secondary schools.
According to the Mental Health Foundation, a large number of mental health disorders begin in adolescence (by the age of 16 years). As an initiative focusing on prevention of mental health issues, we target pupils before this average age of onset. However, at the same time, the pupils have to be old enough to understand the importance of this issue and the content of our workshops (why mental health issues might develop, how they affect people, and how the pupils might help their friends who are experiencing mental health issues).
While the variety of workshop topics differs slightly between the different branches, most of our volunteer groups provide the following workshops:
DEPRESSION & ANXIETY
SELF-HARM & SUICIDE
PSYCHOSIS & SCHIZOPHRENIA
Open Minds have currently branches at six universities across the UK.
I am interested - what do i do?
If your school is in relative proximity of any of these universities, you can contact the branch directly on our contact page. Alternatively, you can get in touch with the national committee who will help you get in touch with a branch near you.
If you have any questions about us, do not hesitate to get in touch.