Public Minds Videos

Many teachers and youth workers are able to identify young people that they work with who are struggling with their mental health, but don't necessarily know what to do about it. 'Public Minds' is a series of short films which tackles this head-on, presenting very practical advice given directly by young people, mental health practitioners, youth workers and counsellors, many of whom have suffered with mental health problems themselves.

The project was commissioned by the NHS, developed by the charity, Young Minds, and created by a group of young people in Blackburn. The films can be used as classroom discussion starters or directly as a training resource. Accompanying lesson plans are available for free from the Young Minds web site and copies of the DVD are available upon request - see below.

[Introductory Video - YouTube Frame]

Public Minds Videos Online:

Downloadable Resources:

Full press release from Young Minds

On Wednesday 30th March 2011, the ‘Public Minds’ emotional health and wellbeing/mental health resource for young people was launched at Darwen Aldridge Community Academy. The launch event was a fantastic evening that provided the perfect occasion to celebrate the work that has been performed developing this resource and the opportunity to raise the awareness of the resource and of issues around emotional health and wellbeing/mental health for children and young people.  

NHS Blackburn with Darwen secured funding from the Department of Health Teen Life Check campaign ( to develop a local resource to be utilised by young people aged 12 – 15 years of age that promotes and increases the awareness of emotional health and wellbeing/mental health issues. The aims of the project were to increase the awareness of both the risk factors associated with poor emotional health and wellbeing and the protective factors, increasing awareness of local services and self help information for support, in particular the Teen Life Check website, also addressing wider issues surrounding mental health stigma and discrimination.

Young Minds mental health charity were commissioned to develop this resource, with Rosie Turner the VIK National Project Leader for Training, who works to provide a voice for young people’s mental health and wellbeing, the lead for the project. The project began with wide consultation across services for young people in Blackburn with Darwen with surveys and workshops being completed. Young people contributed from services including, Nightsafe, Young Carers, Midnight League, Housing Associations, Lifeline, Brook and also some colleges and schools including Blakewater, St Wilfred’s and Blackburn College. A small active group of young people grew steadily over the project and formed their own project group titled ‘My Mind Blackburn with Darwen’; they came up with the concept for the resource, all of the designs, they wrote and performed a rap with the Blackburn Finest Rap group and Young People’s Services and they all learnt the skills of film making from ‘Talking Donkey Films’ and then filmed and interviewed Blackburn with Darwen young people and professionals to be a part of the resource.

From all the consultations it was clear that the young people felt that a DVD with integrated downloadable activities would be the most effective way to support young people and professionals. The DVD film includes life stories from young people who have really struggled between the ages of 12 – 15 and what they did or what would have helped them; diary entries from a young person when she was really struggling; poetry and interviews from young people and professionals. There is also the rap written about mental health issues that plays throughout the resource. The resource has been designed and produced by young people from Blackburn with Darwen with their full active participation to develop a resource for Blackburn with Darwen young people.

The resource is now available with copies of the DVD being distributed to key partners throughout the Borough. The DVD’s can be accessed by contacting Steve Flynn (Service Transformation Manager, NHS Blackburn with Darwen, 01254 282177).

Rich Smith, 02/05/2011
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