Pupils at a Leeds school are getting help with their mental health and wellbeing thanks to a partnership between us and Leeds Rhinos Foundation.

Ten teenagers from Brigshaw High School in Allerton Bywater, went through a six week programme of workshops covering team building, being healthy, positive relationships, keeping safe and understanding emotions.

Fozia Nazneen, who worked with the youngsters says the highly tailored support had made a real difference:

“The programme is all about empowering the young people to make positive life choices by giving them a chance to talk and discover more about themselves and their issues. The sessions are a mix of classroom and physical activity and usually start with chat about how Leeds Rhinos are doing. The teenagers learn some great life skills through the ball sports including; working as a team and with people you don’t know, and how recognising strengths and weaknesses help build relationships and resilience.

“It has been fantastic to see one youngster, who was almost invisible in the early sessions, grow in confidence. And much of that is because the group are learning how to encourage and support each other. There have also been some good discussions and awareness raising around mental health labels.

“Without this type of extra intervention some of them would continue to find it difficult to participate in class or to make friends. If a young person’s wellbeing is seriously compromised, so is their ability to focus on their learning and achieve their potential. It’s something everyone wants to avoid.

“Schools have always been on the front line of children's mental health, increasingly so now. We hope this new partnership means more Leeds youngsters will get the support they need."