Children and young people’s mental health; peer support The DfE has launched a consultation on children’s and young people’s mental health. The consultation closes on 24 March 2016. The focus of the consultation is peer support, as a way of supporting mental wellbeing and the best way of ensuring that this is provided effectively. The DfE seeks to find out more about:
- what works in peer support for children and young people’s mental wellbeing;
- the approaches that are currently available; and
- how things might be improved.
Peer support included helping a friend to discuss their problems, buddying and befriending schemes, to 1:1 and group support sessions. It can happen face to face or be online and is about promoting emotional wellbeing as much as supporting those with problems.
The DfE acknowledges that many schools already provide peer support schemes on a wide range of topics such as friendships, bullying and transition. Some schools already run peer support programmes for mental health. Peer support is not intended to be a replacement for specialist support from a mental health professional, but is in addition to this.