Congratulations Sam - Sparkle's new Mental Health Champion!

Our Activities Development Officer Samantha Edwards has recently qualified as a mental health first aider and trainer licensed instructor after completing her Mental Health First Aid Instructor training.

The 5-day training programme focuses on youth mental health protection, aligning with the mission of Sparkle. This training equips Sam to provide quality mental health first aid and also enables her to train other staff members to provide the same level of care.

What is mental health first aid?

Mental health first aid is the help you give to someone developing a mental health problem, experiencing a worsening mental health problem, or in a mental health crisis.

What will this mean for Sparkle?

This training program with equip Sparkle staff members with a detailed action plan, enabling them to provide quality support to young people with any mental health condition they may be facing. Sam will be able to teach staff members how to offer assistance to children and young people who may be struggling, as well as how to direct them and their families towards the appropriate medical professionals who can further help them.

Although staff members are not qualified to diagnose, they are able to effectively direct individuals to the resources that they need for recovery.

Sam will spend the next few months training Sparkle team leads and Sparkle session supervisors. This training will include a 2-day mental health course. Once completed, the information will be further shared will all Sparkle Leisure Support Workers.

Sam will also develop an in-house training system to ensure that all Leisure Support Workers have access to basic information about who to go to for assistance for different mental health conditions.

Sam will also be qualified to provide support to any staff members who may be dealing with their own mental health struggles, as Sparkle takes the wellbeing of staff just as seriously as the wellbeing of the children and young people.

This training is now mandatory for all supervisors and team leads, and will be taken just as seriously as compulsory safeguard training.