Student wellbeing ambassadors have been appointed at Saint John Houghton Catholic Voluntary to raise awareness of mental health.
The whole of Year 9 and 10 were invited to apply for the roles and 25 students were successful.
So far, the school has conducted an emotional, mental health and wellbeing audit to see what support already exists for pupils and to assess the whole school approach to mental health.
Six members of staff have received specialist training along with the ambassadors and ultimately a mental health policy will be drawn up.
An artist has visited school to work with students on a large wall painting of a tree displaying the five ways to wellbeing.
Students will also contribute to a voluntary passport which details what actions they’ve taken to raise awareness of wellbeing and mental health and this document is set to be rolled out across all schools by Derbyshire County Council.
After two training sessions, students held and Act of Worship to tell the whole school about the purpose of the new roles and staff and students also wore yellow for a day to support the Young Minds charity.
Ella Davies, Emmaus Centre Manager at Saint John Houghton CVA, said: “The students are not there to act as counsellors but what they will do is raise awareness of the support that is available, how they can help and what we can offer to try to help reduce stress in school. It’s great because it’s all being done from students’ perspective so it’s not how we as adults see it, it’s how they would see it. They’ve already come up with some great ideas.”
Students have already been thinking of plans for the future including a space where students who are feeling stressed can relax and feel calmer.
Student Caitlin Hawley is looking forward to her role as a wellbeing ambassador.
She said: “I think mental health is such a massive thing and the good thing about having ambassadors is that everything will be done from a student’s point of view. We will be meeting as a group and developing ideas that will make school a better place in terms of mental health which is an issue that affects everyone.”
In November, Years 7,8,9 are having a mental health and wellbeing day when they will be introduced to the ‘five ways to wellbeing’. They will be taking part in activities, watching a special performance by a rock band on Mental Health, Online Safety & Cyber Bullying and designing postcards for a ‘postcards of kindness campaign’.


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