Place2Be - Making a lifetime of difference to children in schools across the UK
Today's school children face all kinds of challenges that threaten to derail them, from gang culture on our streets to challenging home lives. Unless they are given the means to cope, their feelings of sadness, fear and anger can easily spill over in the classroom - and in society.
Place2Be seeks to improve the prospects of children aged 4-14 by providing school-based mental health support for them and their families at a time when they need it most. By offering swift access to counselling and other services, we support pupils with emotional and behavioural problems who often miss out on receiving adequate help from statutory services.
• 3 children in every classroom have a diagnosable mental health disorder
• 90% of young offenders had a mental health disorder as a child
• 80% of children showing behavioural problems at the age of five go on to develop more serious forms of anti-social behaviour
• Children are less likely to suffer from serious mental health difficulties in later life if they receive support at an early age
• Children likely to drop-out at school are likely to have disengaged in primary school
• Children in the poorest households are three times more likely to have a mental health problem.
Our work in schools
Based within 282 schools across the UK, our specialist mental health professionals and over 1,000 trained volunteers work with more than 116,000 vulnerable children who are often dealing with challenges that even as adults, we would struggle to comprehend. The children Place2Be sees may be living with domestic violence, coping with parental drug and alcohol abuse or suffering from neglect, as well as those who are struck suddenly by sad circumstance such as losing a parent or experiencing family breakdown. It is hardly surprising that those living with these immense challenges find it difficult to concentrate or learn at school, failing to reach their potential and entering into a cycle of low aspiration, attainment and achievement.
Place2Be works with these children at a critical stage in their development to break down these emotional barriers to learning, helping them cope with life's challenges, thrive and improve their future prospects.
We provide varying levels of support, including;
- Long-term weekly one-to-one work for children with the most complex needs, referred by teachers, parents or external agencies;
- Lunchtime self-referral sessions where children can come along and talk about whatever is worrying them;
- Group work for problems that a number of children might be facing such as bullying, bereavement or gang involvement;
- Support for teachers through training, advice and whole class sessions;
- Critically, we also have a service solely for parents - an area which is incredibly important as the parents we work with are often hard to reach and reluctant to accept support from statutory services.
What we do makes a difference
A child's formative years have a huge impact on their long-term development and prospects. Early intervention helps to prevent the downward spiral which can start in childhood and gain momentum through adolescence.
Poor behaviour, truancy, low academic achievement, exclusion, drug and alcohol abuse, teenage pregnancy, and involvement in crime. These are the consequences of leaving children's problems unaddressed.
Measuring the impact of our work is woven into our organisational DNA - we have always strived to determine and improve our impact for children, their families, schools and society. We are proud to say that our services make a difference; evidence shows that children who receive Place2Be's help have:
• Enhanced self-esteem
• Improved academic progress
• Stronger communication skills
• Ability to develop positive relationships
• Improved behaviour in class.
Why Place2Be needs your help
During the coming year, we aim to sustain our work and reach more children and their parents. Place2Be needs your support to continue: we have so much more to do.
"Dear Place2Be. Thank you for making me feel better. I couldn't do anything without you. Thank you forever." Abdul, 8