Children's Mental Health Week 2021

Child with messy paint hands looking through fingers

It's Children's Mental Health Week [1-7th February 2021]. Recognising of the significance of supporting children's mental health, particularly in these times, the Church of Scotland published an article today noting during this week, people across Scotland will be looking at how children and young people can be better supported to thrive.  The following is taken from the article:

Children’s mental health is at the heart of CrossReach Children and Families Services such as Daisy Chain in Govanhill, which supports parents with young children, The Mallard, a short breaks service in Glasgow for children and young people with disabilities and the Erskine Waterfront Campus, to name just three.

On the other side of the country in Edinburgh, the Sunflower Garden Counselling Service supports children affected by drug and alcohol use within their families.

Craig Miller, who coordinates counselling for CrossReach in the East of Scotland, says

“Since the lockdown Sunflower Garden has delivered over 180 sessions to children and young people. It is less than in normal times, but at first we really doubted whether it might be possible to meet with any child or young person remotely at all.

“Some of the children we work with are just 6 or 7 years old and our families are often extremely vulnerable and face enormous challenges that leave them living from moment to moment.”

Sunflower Garden counsellors also reach out to parents and carers helping them work through difficulties, Mr Miller adds.

“As well as the direct therapy we offer to children and young people, Sunflower Garden supports the wider family system. We have made more than 100 support calls to parents and carers along with many more texts and emails that ensure we stay in contact during a very isolating time for many vulnerable families.”

One family member who is part of the programme told staff:

“I feel the phone calls and support have been very beneficial to me. It has made me feel valued. I know Sunflower is there to support my grandson but the support I have been given has been exceptional.

“Having someone from Sunflower Garden involved has been amazing and it is the only support I receive”

To read the full article, go to the Church of Scotland Website

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