Sector News

Lewisham HeadStart bid successful!

A new mental health project will help 10-14 year olds in Lewisham to deal with their problems and worries after receiving a £500,000 grant from the Big Lottery Fund’s £75m HeadStart programme.

Posted: 07/11/2014

The development funding
means that young people in the area will take part in a pilot project over the
next year. The local partnership will use this pilot to work up long term plans
that could benefit from a multi-million pound share of HeadStart funding.

previous YouGov survey for the Big Lottery Fund revealed that 45 per cent of
children aged 10-14 have reported being unable to sleep because of stress or
worry, with fifty nine per cent saying they feel worried or sad at least once a
week. However, only around 25 per cent of young people needing treatment for
mental health problems actually receive it and usually only once they reach

HeadStart programme aims to develop ways of dealing with mental health issues
before they become deep-rooted problems. Focussing primarily on schools, the
HeadStart partners will offer a range of approaches, including peer mentoring,
mental health ‘first aid’ training, online portals and special resilience
lessons helping pupils aged 10-14 feel they have support at in the classroom as
well as at home and tackling the stigma that can often surround the issues of
mental health.

Councillor Paul Maslin, Cabinet Member for Children and Young
People at Lewisham Council
, said: “We are very
excited to be part of this pilot project. Making the journey from teenager to
adulthood is an important stage in young people’s lives and some will find it
easier than others. So it’s important that where we can, we build mental and
emotional resilience in those young people who may find the journey more
difficult. I look forward to seeing the results of this project and how the
involvement of young people in Lewisham has contributed to this important


The programme includes youth led film, creative arts projects and an innovation strand, amongst other things. The specifications are being developed and will go out to tender by September.

Jane Hendrie is on the Lewisham HeadStart Steering Group so please get in touch if you need more information. But also …

Watch this space!!

Find out more on Lewisham’s website

"Just to say a huge thanks ... I am looking forward to progressing with this project thanks to your support, advice and guidance"

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