Young peoples’ health during the Covid-19 lockdown is to take top priority with new initiative from Young Gloucestershire and the Cotswold Community Safety Partnership.
The Cotswold Community Safety Partnership is working with Young Gloucestershire (Young Glos) to support young people’s mental health throughout the lockdown. Concerns about our young people’s mental health and a potential rise in mental illness was discussed urgently at a meeting this week.
The Partnership has commissioned Young Glos to deliver a range of services to support young people’s mental health and encourage them to stay at home and stay safe. The Partnership is funding the scheme using a grant provided by the OPCC (Office of Police & Crime Commissioner).
They are also exploring ways to engage young people with online support, including the development of a new YouTube channel and online chat service.
Cllr Jenny Forde, Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing at Cotswold District Council and Chair of the Community Safety Partnership, said: “Many young people feel they are being unfairly blamed for spreading the virus when they are suffering as acutely as any, in what should be their formative years.
“They are remaining in school for now but that is stripped of any of the social interactions and extracurricular activities that help to combat loneliness or feelings of isolation. With teenage children myself, I really do fear for young people’s mental health and it’s so reassuring to see the creative, inspiring and relevant way in which Young Glos are connecting with our youth, giving them a voice and just letting them know they are not alone.
“Young Glos is a dynamic organisation that listens to what young people are telling them they need and provides tailored services to meet their needs. I’m proud that we have taken the lead on this and thankful to the Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner for giving us the money to make it happen.”
Jess Rudge-Welford, Operations Manager at Young Glos said: “Young Glos will continue to deliver Street Based Youth Work in the Cotswolds which was launched as a response to the COVID crisis to build trusting relationships with young people in order to help identify those most at risk in the District. Our street team will be on the ground across the Cotswolds engaging with young people who are out and about but shouldn’t be to educate and disperse them. We will also be running virtual and face to face provision where permitted.
“Maintaining positive mental health is critical and Young Glos will remain open for business during November with some adaptations to services. Working in partnership with Infobuzz, Young Glos will be providing Link Chat phone and text support, counselling services and online mindfulness sessions.”
Young people looking for training opportunities or practical support should visit Young Gloucestershire’s website or get in touch by sending an email to email@example.com with your name and phone number and the support you are looking for.
Infobuzz will continue to provide their Hidden Victims of Crime service however much of the services will move to online support. If you are a family who have a loved one in prison they can offer you support, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and their team will be in touch.