Free courses on mental health in children

  • Date

    Wed 4 May 22

A silhouetted image of a young child, against bright sunshine, with their arms in the air.

A series of free online talks taking place this spring aims to raise awareness of some of the challenges faced by children and young people today.

Providing an insight into issues such as self-harm and challenging behaviour, they will be of interest to those who work with children, as well as teachers and parents.

With a 33% rise in referrals to specialist mental health services for UK pupils being reported by the NSPCC, these courses are an opportunity to provide support for those working in the sector.

Chris Tanner, senior lecturer in the University's Department of Psychosocial and Psychoanalytic Studies (PPS), said: “We’re delighted to be running this free short course. We’re committed to supporting all who work with vulnerable, or traumatised clients through learning about relational approaches, based on psychodynamic thinking.”

The talks are led by PPS lecturers, all experts in their fields.

On Friday 13 May, Dr Chris Nicholson, head of PPS, will run a session on understanding and working with self-harm. Chris has worked in children’s services for several years and, with colleagues, set up The Junction, the young people's service for mental health charity Colchester MIND.

On Tuesday 14 June, Professor Sue Kegerreis, well-known for her work in psychodynamic counselling, will introduce some of the less obvious factors at work in children who are disruptive or difficult to manage in her talk “Why won’t they behave? Why can’t they learn?”

Later in June, and in early July, there are sessions to support staff who work with traumatised children. One talk looks at therapeutic work in residential children’s homes, and the other is on supporting staff and how to unpack the stresses of working in this environment.

There is also a session highlighting a school intervention, called Be Yourself, which looks at how using a virtual reality environment can be used for early assessment and prevention in children and adolescents with early signs of body image disorder and gender identity difficulties.

The online talks also provide a taster to the Foundation Degree/BA Therapeutic Communication and Therapeutic Organisations – a course which attracts professionals already working in the mental health sector.

Attendance to these courses is free, but please register your place in advance.