Derry City & Strabane - Local schools invited to mental health awareness event in Foyle Arena




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Local schools invited to mental health awareness event in Foyle Arena

09 October 2019

Local post-primary schools are being invited by the Derry City & Strabane District Civic Forum to take part in a special event in the Foyle Arena this week.

Dealing with Stress and Building Resilience on Friday October 11th aims to raise awareness about mental health and promote health and wellbeing among young people and their teachers.

The event will focus on a range of topics affecting young people, from learning to deal with stress, to how to thrive in an online environment.

The event is being organised by the Civic Forum for Derry City and Strabane District which works to address issues relating to Alcohol, Drugs, Mental Health, Emotional Wellbeing, Suicide Prevention and Homelessness.

Speaking ahead of the event, Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council and Forum Chair, Councillor Michaela Boyle, said it was vitally important to equip young people and their peers with the right information and skills to deal with issues around mental health.

“Mental health and wellbeing is a high priority for Council and developing programmes which will effectively tackle issues and change attitudes in the long term is a key aspect of the Strategic Growth Plan,” she said.

“I am delighted that this event is taking place as it provides an opportunity for young people to find out more about the support network in place for them and how they can go about addressing some of the health and social concerns which affect their age group. 

“I am also encouraged that information and support is being provided for teachers at this event.

“We are all too aware that many young people in our society struggle with the challenges of school, peer pressure, and now the very real dangers presented by inappropriate online activity.

“Workshops such as these offer the chance to come together to share their concerns and receive guidance on how to approach issues and access the right information and support.”

The Civic Forum brings together a range of bodies including Council, Western Health & Social Care Trust, Public Health Agency, PSNI, Housing Executive, Education Authority, Derry and Strabane Healthy Cities, Council for the Homeless NI and the Policing and Community Safety Partnership with the shared objective of improving the health and wellbeing of local people.

As some of the most vulnerable members of society are impacted by more than one serious health issue, the Civic Forum provides a platform to explore the interface between some of these issues, so they can be addressed in a comprehensive manner rather than treated in isolation. 

In addition to the partners of the Civic Forum the event is also being supported by the Peace IV Programme and Youth 19.

The youth event will take place in the Foyle Arena on October 11th between 10am and 2pm and Year 11 and/or 12 pupils from Post-Primary schools across the city and district are invited to attend along with their teachers. 

Events on the day centre round enhancing young people’s ability to manage stress and build resilience with interactive workshops relating to the Five Steps to Wellbeing.


The following link provides further information on the Five Steps

Workshops for the pupils will explore the issues related to Alcohol & Drugs, Bullying and how self-esteem and body image are affected by social media together with the influence of celebrity culture and advertising and there will also be the opportunity to take part in some fun physical activity.

This year’s event will also include information and workshops for teachers aimed at supporting them in their roles within schools.

 A wide range of information stands will also be available on the day to offer advice and information on the wide range of services available locally. 

For more information about the work of the Derry City and Strabane District Civic Forum you can email or telephone the Council’s Health & Housing Team on (028) 71253253.