Children and young people in Brent and Harrow to benefit from new Mental Health Support Teams

CNWL, in partnership with commissioners and Brent and Harrow councils, will run Mental Health Support Teams (MHSTs) in both boroughs as part of a trailblazing programme to work with children and staff in education settings. This programme will see two teams of mental health experts supporting children and young people (CYP), parents and carers, and schools and colleges in each of the boroughs.

MHSTs will enhance early intervention support to provide extra capacity to deliver evidence-based psychological interventions in schools and create better links with wider services helping children build resilience, promote awareness and understanding among peers and support them with any mental health concerns before they become severe.

The teams will support schools to develop a whole-school approach to mental health and act as a link between schools and local CYP mental health services, providing an interface to signpost and refer to specialist services based on individual needs.

Co-production and collaboration was key to our successfully bids, and the ongoing MHST programme will see this continue with a range of partners including children and young people (CYP), parents and carers, and other providers of CYP mental health services.

Jackie Shaw, CAMHS Service Director at CNWL, said: “This is fantastic news for children in Brent and Harrow and their families. By working together we can identify and provide early support to children and young people who are at risk and prevent difficulties occurring or tackle them head-on when they do, before they get worse. We hope this partnership will help young people receive the right support at the right time.”

Each MHST is staffed by four Education Mental Health Practitioners (EHMPs), who will undertake specialist training at University College London alongside school-based training and will be supervised by NHS staff.

The programme will see MHSTs partner with schools selected based on the level of need in their school population, current mental health investment and support, and development of mental health leadership.

The Mental Health Support Teams, which will be fully operational by November 2021, are a key part of the Government’s plans to transform children and young people’s mental health through the NHS Long Term Plan. For more information, visit the NHS England website.

You can also keep updated on the development of MHSTs on this website.