Heads Up for Airdrie Academy
Staff and pupils at Airdrie Academy launched their collaborative positive mental health campaign, ‘Heads Up’. Their aim is to raise awareness about mental health problems, including suicide, and to empower young people to start having positive conversations about mental health to stamp out stigma. As part of their in initiative, the school is partnership up with Stigma Free Lanarkshire, a Lanarkshire wide programme bringing people together to influence change and challenge mental health stigma and discrimination.
On 3rd October the school signed the Stigma Free Lanarkshire pledge to action making a commitment to challenge stigma and to help improve the mental health, wellbeing and lives of staff and pupils as well as the wider community.
“We are taking action to promote positive mental health for our young people, staff, parents and our community. We will also endeavour to end the stigma and discrimination experienced by people with mental health problems. This is our pledge, we take it very seriously and we are committed to a whole school approach. No tick box exercises here at Airdrie Academy. We are on our way to being a mentally healthy school.” (Head Teacher)
Lynn Carlin (Airdrie Academy), Audrey Bremner (SFL), Martin Anderson (Head Teacher, Airdrie Academy), Jenny Hutton (Public Mental Health & Wellbeing Development Officer, NHS Lanarkshire)
“We are delighted to be involved with Airdrie Academy in working together to tackle mental health stigma in Lanarkshire. We are inspired by the school’s staff and pupils and the work that they are doing now and will do through their pledge. This voice of support can change minds, behaviours, and ultimately, lives.” Jenny Hutton, Interim Public Mental Health & Wellbeing Development Manager, NHS Lanarkshire and Chair of Lanarkshire Recovery Network.
In addition, twelve senior pupils from S5 & S6 were trained as Mental Health Ambassadors and will be available for peer support. Staff also committed to train in Mental Health First Aid.
Airdrie Academy also works in partnership with Airdrieonians. As suicide is the main cause of young deaths in Scotland, the club recognises the importance of teaming up with Suicide Prevention North Lanarkshire to raise awareness.
Diamonds’ director Sam Greene, midfielder Craig Truesdale, and commercial manager, Dougy Allsop, were on hand to help with the campaign launch.
Airdrie Academy is really bringing people together to promote the mental wellbeing messages within the school as part of a bigger picture.
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