As part of its work with the Elevate Foundation, Clarecare has been delivering the ‘Working Things Out’ positive mental health workshop to young people in secondary schools and youth reach centres across Co. Clare since January this year.
Developed in Ireland by the Parents Plus organisation, ‘Working Things Out’ is an evidence based programme for adolescents aged 11-16 years of age to promote positive mental health and teach coping strategies to overcome specific problems. Since January 1006 students have participated in the Workshop.
Based on real life experiences of young people, the workshop delivered by Clarecare staff members Sinead Corbett and Michelle Reilly, teaches young people positive effective ways to overcome problems in their everyday lives, including the ‘Stop and Think’ method of solving problems, good communication for making positive changes, and ‘Pressing the Pause Button’ to help keep your cool when dealing with anger and conflict.
According to Sinead and Michelle the young people’s engagement and participation in the workshop has been extremely positive. Young people have expressed how they benefitted from the discussions around mental health generated through the workshops with the students adding “Mental health is in us all and I’ve learned we need to take care of ourselves” and “Thank you for helping me understand that I am good enough”.
Through the workshop evaluations the majority of students also highlighted the importance of talking to someone they can trust, with comments including:
“If you feel bad, talk to someone”, “talking when feeling down is the key” and “Listen more carefully, keep calm, and clearly communicate what I am feeling instead of hinting and hoping someone will notice”.
Equally school staff acknowledged the positive benefits of the workshop with John O’Loughlin, Lisdoonvarna stating “that it was enjoyable and useful and will help with students’ resilience when it comes to life’s ups and downs”.
Niamh Ni Mhuiri, Colaiste Mhuire, Ennis adding that “students felt that they could confide in the presenters and trusted them- it was obvious that they were very comfortable with them… And it benefitted class morale and helped students develop life coping skills”.
The Elevate Foundation funds youth mental health and well-being experts to deliver programmes, talks, workshops and events for young people throughout Co. Clare. Their vision is to empower young people to develop the skills, awareness, confidence and opportunities they need to realise their greatest potential and to create a sustainable improvement in the lives of young people in Clare.
According to its founder John Burke “the ‘Working Things Out’ evidence based workshop delivered by Clarecare is an extremely positive partnership, delivered by experts in this area, who are passionate and committed to improving the wellbeing of young people.
“We are extremely proud of how well it has been received and know that the skills young people have learned from it will be invaluable to them into the future.”
Schools and youth clubs can avail of Elevate’s range of workshops promoting positive mental health for young people free of charge by logging on to www.ElevateFoundation.ie
If anyone wishes to avail of Clarecare supports they can contact 065 682 8178 or visit www.clarecare.ie