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Kesgrave High School backs charity #HelloYellow campaign to mark World Mental Health Day

PUBLISHED: 14:41 10 October 2017 | UPDATED: 15:12 10 October 2017

Kesgrave High School pupils wear yellow in support of World Mental Health Day. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Kesgrave High School pupils wear yellow in support of World Mental Health Day. Picture: GREGG BROWN

A school in Suffolk has used this World Mental Health Day to show pupils it is normal to struggle, and help is always on hand when times get tough.

Faye Cutting, left, and Jae Sherlock. Picture: GREGG BROWN Faye Cutting, left, and Jae Sherlock. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Staff and students from Kesgrave High School donned their brightest yellow clothes to lessons today as part of a campaign run by charity Young Minds called #HelloYellow, which aims to start conversations about mental health in the classroom.

Cooks in the canteen even got on board, serving up the brightest korma curry with pilau rice.

All aspects of mental health were covered during assemblies, form time and personal, social, health and economic education (PSHEE) lessons.

Faye Cutting, PSHEE coordinator at Kesgrave High School, said staff saw the impact of mental health problems on the lives of their students on a daily basis.

Katie Bird, left, and Marshall Fjellbrook. Picture: GREGG BROWN Katie Bird, left, and Marshall Fjellbrook. Picture: GREGG BROWN

She added: “It’s one of the things we find ourselves dealing with more than others, poor mental health like anxiety and stress and the pressures life and studying puts on them.

“The idea is to start conversations and to make them aware of what they can be doing to look after themselves and each other, as well as the warning signs, asking the right questions and signposting them to where the support is available through friends, family, staff or helpful websites.

“We are pushing it with staff as well and saying that by starting to talk about it we can normalise it so they know it’s nothing to be ashamed of and just because there are no plasters or bandages doesn’t mean someone is not suffering.”

Donations were made to Young Minds, a children and young people mental health charity, and Mrs Cutting hopes the total will hit £2,000.

Left to right, Elliot Pomroy, Kiera Mahoney and Demi Nicholas. Picture: GREGG BROWN Left to right, Elliot Pomroy, Kiera Mahoney and Demi Nicholas. Picture: GREGG BROWN

According to research published by Young Minds, roughly three children in every school class have a diagnosable mental health condition, while 90% of school leaders have reported an increase in the number of students experiencing anxiety, stress or depression over the last five years.

Jade Zelkowicz, community fundraising manager for Young Minds, said: “We know that young people face a huge range of pressures, including exam stress, bullying and concerns about body image. When these pressures become overwhelming, it can be an incredibly isolating experience, and the smallest gesture of support can make a huge difference.”

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