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St Sampson’s High School says hello to yellow for World Mental Health Day

St Sampson’s High School says hello to yellow for World Mental Health Day

Sunday 10 October 2021

St Sampson’s High School says hello to yellow for World Mental Health Day


In honour of World Mental Health Day, pupils and staff at St Sampson's High School donned yellow clothing on Friday to raise awareness of young people looking after their mental health.

Family Liaison Officer Andy Colleran organised the Young Minds event at his previous schools in the UK and has now brought it to St Sampson’s.

It is estimated that 1 in 6 children aged between 5-16 are suffering with a mental health problem, meaning that a class of 30 will generally have 5 students struggling, more often than not, alone. 

Today marks World Mental Health Day, and on Friday staff and students of St Sampson’s High wore a splash of yellow to raise awareness of mental health along with thousands of schools and communities across the UK.

“It is our hope that by hosting days like today here at St Sampson’s High School, we lift the lid on stigmas, discrimination and misunderstandings around mental health," said Mr Colleran. 

Students got involved in videos, games and quizzes from Young Minds during their tutor times, and infographics were posted around the school with information on signs and symptoms of mental health problems, where students could go for help, and how to approach peers they are concerned about.

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Pictured: Students and teachers at St Sampson's wore yellow on Friday to raise awareness of mental health in young people.

SENCO Ian Edwards explained that wearing yellow and raising awareness gives students a confidence to speak up about their problems: “It gives a message that we’re aware of mental health and we’re prepared as a school to really endorse it, support it and have your backs.” 

St Sampson’s High have forged a partnership with Guernsey Mind to form a fortnightly drop-in centre during lunchtime every other Tuesday, to allow pupils to speak with professionals and then be signposted for appropriate help if they need it. 

Jazz McCutcheon from Guernsey Mind told Express that the attitudes and language towards mental health need to move away from terms often misused, such as ‘attention-seeking’.  

“Mental health isn’t attention seeking, self-harm isn’t attention-seeking, it’s people who need support and are managing in a way which is the only way they know how," she said. 

Mr Colleran explained that it is important that students are aware that staff are there to help them and listen to them, and wearing yellow for world mental health day has played a huge part in that.

“When the students are walking round they can see all the staff that have taken on board what’s happening and what that means and therefore that staff member is open to talk and they are aware of mental health.”

He added the importance of increasing the conversation surrounding mental health, because “without education on mental health there will never be an improvement.”

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