UEL project wins HSJ award
Mental health project wins prestigious award
A project supported by University of East London (UEL) psychologists which aims to raise awareness of mental health issues amongst school children has won an award from the Health Service Journal (HSJ).
Time 2 Talk (T2T) aims to increase understanding about mental health and emotional wellbeing amongst young people in school, to challenge barriers to accessing support and tackle the stigma regarding self-harm, mental health and emotional distress.
The quality of the project has been recognised by the HSJ – an online journal which provides independent insight into national policy as well as local NHS organisations. The HSJ awards have been running for 34 years and are considered highly significant in highlighting best practice and innovation in the NHS
T2T was designed and delivered by a partnership of agencies including the Haringey Adolescent Outreach Team, Park View School Enfield and Haringey Mental Health Trust. It has been running since September 2013.
UEL was invited to join at the development stages of the project, with Dr Tina Rae, academic tutor for the doctorate in Educational and Child Psychology, being involved in the research design and analysis of data and writing the initial literature review and report.
Another member of the team was Samantha Lock, who heard about the project while she was working as an assistant psychologist at Enfield Educational Psychology Service.
Samantha helped design an emotional wellbeing and attitude survey that was then distributed to parents, teachers and students, as she explains.
She said, “Time to Talk placed an emphasis on working with the parents of the students as well as the students themselves. The aim was to support the school in creating an emotionally safe and supportive environment for pupils and staff.”
Tina said, “I am really delighted that T2T project has been so successful. It is important that, as academics and researchers, the work that we do really does impact upon practice and inform the development of interventions. It is vital that institutions such as ours engage in such work and continue to challenge the negative discourse around mental health and encourage others to do likewise.”
After her time working on the project Samantha has decided to take her involvement with UEL a step further. She is now studying with Tina after being accepted onto UEL’s Child and Educational Psychology doctorate course.
She said, “I hope to see the Time 2 Talk project continue to grow and evolve and that one day, when I’m finally qualified, I will be able to see the positive influences this project has had on challenging stigma and attitudes in mental health.”