Embedding mental health support within schools

Place2Be is incredibly grateful to donors that choose to make unrestricted grants to our work, of which Pears Foundation is the most significant. This kind of support provides us with the security and flexibility to be innovative and ambitious, and has underpinned our ability to adapt and grow. The support and endorsement of Pears Foundation has been vital in making this possible. They have asked challenging questions and shared their knowledge, helping us refine realistic and sustainable long-term plans.
Dame Benita Refson OBE, President,
School-based counselling makes sense on many levels. It offers children a safe and non-stigmatising place to talk about things that trouble them, so that problems can be addressed early on. For schools, having Place2Be’s trained counsellors on site gives teachers and other staff confidence to address issues around mental health and wellbeing, and school heads and governors tell us they value how this in turn helps create a culture of more openness and emotional resilience across the school.
Kari Holtung, Programme Director

Partner since: 2010

Funding invested: £1.7million

  • Core: Unrestricted funding
  • Capital: Refurbishment of new premises

With one in six children and young people affected by a diagnosable mental health problem it has never been more important to invest in the availability of front-line emotional and psychological support.

Place2Be provides mental health support in schools through one-to-one and group counselling. Each school the charity works with has a dedicated Place2Be mental health professional who is an integral part of the school team.

Place2Be helps pupils cope with wide-ranging and often complex social issues including bullying, bereavement, domestic violence, family breakdown, neglect and trauma. It offers children a space where they can feel safe and cared for and can get the help they need. They work closely with pupils, families and staff to improve emotional wellbeing and provide mental health support for the whole school.

With proper care and support, children are far less likely to experience mental health issues in adult life. There is also considerable evidence that good mental health contributes to academic performance, improved attendance and reduced exclusion rates.

Place2Be also offers a range of mental health resources for schools and parents and provides training and professional qualifications for school staff.

Pears Foundation has been a supporter of Place2Be’s work since 2010 and is the charity’s single largest funder of core costs. In the time since our relationship began, Place2Be has expanded significantly and now works in over 370 schools, reaching more than 200,000 pupils.

Alongside Place2Be we also partner with Anna Freud and with Education Support, which provides mental health and wellbeing support for teachers and education staff.