The third sector is no stranger to creative collaborations and partnerships. The last fortnight has seen the launch of an exciting new resource called ‘HeidsTogether’. #HeidsTogether is a collection of free, online resources for youth workers to help reduce the impact of coronavirus on the health and wellbeing of young people.
Developed in response to an increased demand for online mental health and wellbeing services, ‘HeidsTogether’ is a collection of podcasts, e-books, training toolkits and lesson plans, full of information and advice on how to address key issues for young people impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.
After receiving funding through the Scottish Government’s Wellbeing Fund, YouthLink Scotland teamed up with leading mental health charities Penumbra and See Me Scotland to identify, adapt and deliver a series of practice development sessions to six youth groups across Scotland.
Penumbra adapted its unique recovery measurement tool Y·ROC, in order to support youth workers in Scotland, while See Me developed a ‘Starter for 6’ mental health delivery manual to allow for digital and face-to-face youth work delivery.
We’ve been absolutely delighted to be part of the #HeidsTogether Youth Mental Health project coordinated by YouthLink. We have been so impressed and inspired by the ways that youth workers are supporting young people to come through the incredible challenges so many are facing during the Covid-19 pandemic. We know that the mental health impact on young people has been profound as routines have been disrupted and relationships with both family and friends have been severely curtailed. It has been fantastic to see and support the efforts to do everything possible to help young people through these times – Stephen Finlayson, Penumbra.
Youth Work D&G, St Mungo’s Academy in Glasgow, Scouts Scotland, LGBT Youth Scotland, Glasgow Life and Passion4Fusion were then supported to conceptualise and develop their own mental health and wellbeing resources, based on the Covid-19 experiences of the young people they support in their communities.
The result is a unique collection of interactive, versatile resources to help young people cope with a wide range of issues, including isolation, anxiety and bereavement, as well as loss of friendship, self-harm and experiencing Covid-19 as a member of the LGBTQI and BAME communities.
Youth Work D&G developed the Oasis Toolkit Resource, a workshop plan to help youth workers explore aspects of mental health which young people can experience on a low-level as part of everyday life as well as those who have been clinically diagnosed with mental health conditions such as anxiety.
Pupils of St Mungo’s Academy in Glasgow worked with FARE Scotland to develop Pure Mental Health, a 21-episode series of podcasts with accompanying coping cards exploring bereavement, loss of routine and friendships.
Glasgow Life supported young people to develop a library of support materials which aims to reduce stigma surrounding mental health, providing young people with tools to improve emotional literacy, mental health awareness and learn the basics of meditation.
LGBT Youth Scotland worked with young people from the Highlands and Dundee to produce a podcast around mental health, particularly in relation to the mental health of young LGBTI people.
Passion4Fusion, a black and minority ethnic charity that supports predominantly BME Young people in Edinburgh and Lothians, created the fantastic storytelling resource Wise Milton to help young people explore the mental health implications of Covid-19, in both a short film and e-book format.
Scouts Scotland’s 2nd Paisley Abbey Scout Group developed Five Ways to Wellbeing to help young people, plan, understand and manage their mental health during periods of increased stress.
The above text has been adapted from the Youthlink press release.