Bickerstaffe C.E.

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3rd July 20
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Mental Health and Well-being

Covid-19 specific advice


Covid - how to look after your mental wellbeing while staying at home



If you have to stay at home because of coronavirus (COVID-19), it's important to take care of your mind as well as your body.

You may feel bored, frustrated or lonely. You may also be low, worried or anxious, or concerned about your finances, your health or those close to you.

It is OK to feel like this – everyone reacts in their own way to challenging events and uncertainty. It's important to remember that staying at home may be difficult, but you are helping to protect yourself and others by doing it.

The tips and advice here are things you can do now to help you keep on top of your mental wellbeing and cope with how you may feel while staying at home. Make sure you get further support if you feel you need it.

The government also has wider guidance on staying at home as a result of coronavirus.


1. Find out about your employment and benefits rights

You may be worried about work and money if you have to stay home – these issues can have a big effect on your mental health.

If you have not already, talk with your employer about staying at home, and learn about your sick pay and benefits rights. Knowing the details about what the coronavirus outbreak means for you for you can reduce worry and help you feel more in control.

2. Think about where to stay

If you would prefer not to stay where you usually do, consider whether there are other options available, like staying with family or friends.

If you live with other people, think about or discuss with them what challenges you might all face if you all need to stay at home or one of you gets coronavirus. If there are problems with your housing conditions, there is help and support out there.

Remember, it's really important to follow the social distancing and stay at home guidance when it comes to seeing and being around others.

3. Plan practical things

Work out how you can get any household supplies you need. You could try asking neighbours or family friends, or find a delivery service.

Continue accessing treatment and support for any existing physical or mental health problems where possible. Let services know you are staying at home, and discuss how to continue receiving support.

If you need regular medicine, you might be able to order repeat prescriptions by phone, or online via a website or app. Contact your GP and ask if they offer this. You can also ask your pharmacy about getting your medicine delivered, or ask someone else to collect it for you.

If you support or care for others, either in your home or by visiting them regularly, think about who can help out while you are staying at home. Carers UK has further advice on creating a contingency plan if you care for others.

4. Connect with others

Maintaining healthy relationships with people you trust is important for your mental wellbeing. Think about how you can stay in touch with friends and family while you are at home – by phone, messaging, video calls or online – whether it's people you usually see often, or reconnecting with old friends or neighbours.

Lots of people are finding the current situation difficult, so staying in touch could help them too.

5. Talk about your worries

It is quite common to feel worried, scared or helpless about the current situation. Remember, it is OK to share your concerns with others you trust – doing so could help them too. Or you could try a charity helpline or webchat.

6. Look after your body

Our physical health really affects how we feel. Try to make sure you and your family eat healthy, well-balanced meals, drink enough water and exercise regularly.

Avoid smoking or drugs, and try not to drink too much alcohol. It can be easy to fall into unhealthy patterns of behaviour that end up making you feel worse.

Get outside for a walk or a run if you can, or try one of our follow-along home-workout videos.

7. Stay on top of difficult feelings

Concern about the coronavirus outbreak is perfectly normal. However, some people may experience intense anxiety that can affect their day-to-day life.

Try to focus on the things you can control, such as how you act, who you speak to and where you get information from.

It's fine to acknowledge that some things are outside of your control, but if constant thoughts about the situation are making you feel anxious or overwhelmed, there are some things you can try to help manage your anxiety, like listen to a mental wellbeing audio guide.

Mental Health First Aid


Mental health is as important as physical health.  Mrs Teachen, the Headteacher, has undertaken training in the nationally recognised qualification delivered by Mental Health First Aid England and is fully qualified in Mental Health First Aid.

School has a Mental Health and Well-being Policy

School are committed to promoting and supporting positive mental health in everyone involved in school life.

Our aim is:

  • to increase awareness of mental health issues
  • reduce stigma and discrimmination
  • promote recognition of symptoms
  • signpost to professional help

How we promote mental health and well-being for pupils

  • Qualified counsellor who provides weekly sessions for pupils who may need support.
  • Daily meditation at the start of every day.
  • Daily mile at lunchtime to increase fitness, blow-off steam.
  • We teach children about their mental health - their feelings and how to deal with them through use of HEADSSUP programme.
  • Use of HeartSmart programme to promote resilience, wellbeing and healthy relationships to create strong mental health.
  • Teaching Growth Mindset strategies such as use of affirmations and visualisations.
  • Weekly Yoga, as part of the curriculum. Yoga Afterschool Club.
  • Bob, school dog, who loves being petted and cared for.  He also loves being read to.
  • Weekly mindfullness clubs such as sewing, knitting and colouring.
  • Cup of Kindness sent between home and school.
  • Guardian Angel support system for staff.


How we promote mental health and well-being for staff


We are committed to developing a mentally healthy workplace by ensuring:

  • PPA time (Planning, Preparation and Assessment) taken at home.
  • Clear 'Directed Time' policy to ensure workoad is manageable. Regular review of Work/Life balance.
  • Time-off to promote family life eg to attend significant family events such as graduation, nativity plays and so on.
  • Time-off in lieu as a thanks for when when staff volunteer time on Saturdays or Sundays to support school events.
  • Guardian Angel scheme - where staff are subject to ongoing random acts of kindness from an unknown provider.  All staff have a guardian angel and also act as guardian angels for other staff members.
  • At least termly social events offering variety of opportunities to socilaise.
  • Access to qualified counsellor weekly to offer support if needed.

How we promote mental health and well-being for parents and wider community

  • Ongoing Twitter feed that signposts adult and ex-pupils to mental health services available
  • Signposting to local mental health services that are within local area
  • Weekly Knitting Club in school for local elderly residents to promote intergenerational relationships and reduce lonliness.
  • Penpal letters between upper junior pupils and local elderly who may be isolated
  • Community events such as hosting Coach to 5K programme to promote health and fitness
  • Social events where members of the community are invited to take part in, such as open days, celebration days such as whole school wedding, birthday celebratons and so on.