The Emotional First Aid team were recently commissioned by Oasis Academy Mayfield, Southampton, to design and deliver a Peer Mentorship course to a group of Year 9 Students as part of the Academy’s ongoing Peer Mentor Programme.
Karen Dawkins, Oasis Academy Mayfield’s Director of Student & Family Learning/ Community Hub Leader & EFA Trainer gave the team the brief to use the theory and philosophy behind the Emotional First Aid training for staff and apply it to the young people themselves to help them develop their skills and confidence to become Peer Mentors to younger students at the academy.
Paul Jetten, EFA Coordinator, was tasked with designing an eight week course to meet the brief. Paul has been passionate about delivering EFA training to Young People since he was first employed at Solent NHS Trust. Utilising his skills and experience both as an EFA Trainer, but also as a Youth Worker/ Counsellor, Paul designed the course to run in two sections. The first four weeks focussed on the Young People themselves, exploring their own emotional well-being, self esteem, and support networks. The second part of the course focussed on the role of a Peer Mentor, developing students’ empathy, listening skills and understanding their role in identifying risk and knowing what to do.
14 Students from Oasis Academy Mayfield successfully completed the course which ran from 10th Oct – 5th Dec 2012
Matthew B., Jack M., Stacie L., Shannon S., Michael T., Poppy S., Lydia B., Sam G., Hannah W., Ollie D., Anna T., Callum B. from Year 9. Tilly W. from Year 8 and Lara T. from Year 10
Special thanks to Rachel Osborne & Amy Doyle who supported the students throughout the training and will continue to coordinate the Peer Mentor programme and support the students in their new roles as Peer Mentors.
One of the students designed art work to express what the course meant to him. Sam G. described his picture detailing the negative thoughts we have and hurtful things people say to others and the course being the Light Bulb that demonstrates all the strategies you can use to overcome negative thoughts and feelings.
We are also delighted to annouce that the Students who attended the course won the John Williams Award for Most Inspirational Team at the Oasis Academies National Student Awards held in Birmingham, for their contribution and commitment to supporting other students in their school by taking on a Peer Mentoring role.
You can read more about this here: Oasis Academy Peer Mentors
We are currently writing an evaluation of this pilot course which we hope to publish shortly. However if you are interested in learning more about the Peer EFA Programme or how it could be run in your school, please contact the Emotional First Aid team: