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20.08.19

Government invests £3.3m in children and young people’s mental health

Local investment totalling £3.3m is set to be spent to expand 23 local projects aimed at helping prevent mental illness in children and young people.

Thousands of young people across England are set to benefit from new mental health support including counselling, mentoring and arts programmes in their communities. Government has pledged to back these schemes with a multi-million pound investment this year.

As part of the government’s commitment to transforming mental health care, mental health minister Nadine Dorries and public health minister Jo Churchill today announced the investment into the 23 projects.

This investment comes as part of the wider £2.3bn a year being used to bolster, develop and improve health and social care nationally through the NHS Long Term Plan.

Tackling mental ill health among children and young people has been a key goal of Government, with a recent pledge to overhaul society’s approach to mental illness through better access to education, training and support across communities. This included a commitment to train all teachers to spot the signs of mental illness in children, making sure they can intervene before issues escalate.

The funding will allow more children and young people aged 25 and under to access local services to support their mental health, with early intervention for those at risk of mental health problems.

The funding will come from the Health and Wellbeing Fund, part of a programme of government investment in the voluntary sector. The projects will be fully-funded through the scheme in their first year and additional joint funding from local commissioners will be agreed for 2 years afterwards.

Ms Dorries said: “We know children and young people today face many pressures at home and in their social and academic lives but giving them easily accessible mental health support at an early age can help them thrive later in life.

“That’s why the government is investing billions every year to transform mental health care, and giving more money to innovative, community-led projects run by people who have chosen to dedicate their lives to supporting young people by providing them with the tools and means they need to manage their own mental health.”

READ MORE: Council leaders seek children’s mental health services ‘overhaul’

READ MORE: NIHR-funded study shows CBT could benefit mental health of children

Ms Churchill added: “It’s only right that children and young people are able to access mental health support, not only through the NHS, but in the heart of their communities, schools and homes where they spend the majority of their time.

“The voluntary sector has a hugely important role to play in delivering these kinds of services and our Health and Wellbeing Fund is leading the way in ensuring government plays a role in cultivating the most effective, innovative and successful forms of community support – backed by an extra £2.3 billion a year by 2023/24 to improve NHS mental health services too.”

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