Nothing About Us Without Us – An invitation from young people with lived experience across Humber and North Yorkshire

Sent on behalf of York CVS:

Children and Young People from across all 6 places in our ICS have come together to form an advisory network to influence the improvement of mental health services and support.  Over the last year Clair Atherton, our Mental health, Learning disabilities and Autism Collaboratives, CYP Engagement and Coproduction Manager has been working with the young people to identify their priorities and to provide a forum for them to share what works well, what are the challenges and make recommendations for improvements.

Clair has also been working in partnership with engagement leads at place to ensure this work compliments existing engagement structures and work at Place.

We have over 200 young people aged 10-25 who have been involved. They would like to invite you, as senior leaders in organisations working with children and young people, to attend the afternoon of their bi annual event on Wednesday 9 August 1pm – 3.30pm. This event will provide you with an opportunity to hear the lived experience of children and young people, so you can hear what works well but also influence the improvements they have identified within your organisations and partnerships.

The event has been coproduced with and will be presented by young people and you will be able to join in person (in York) or online via Microsoft Teams.

Key issues Young People have identified – which will be covered in the event are:

  • Access to mental health services and support across the Thrive framework (clinical and non-clinical)
  • Transition from CYP to adult services or between services (step up/step down)
  • Addressing health inequalities e.g. minoritized groups including LGBTQ+, Race, SEND/Neurodivergence

We hope you will make every effort to attend as your participation really matters to the young people, as you can help deliver the change they need. However, we recognise this event is in the school holidays as this is when young people are available, so if you cannot attend please can you ask a senior colleague to represent your organisation. We need them to be someone who can make commitments to action on behalf of your services and to work with us moving forward.

Young people have said:

Children and young people’s mental health has got so much worse since COVID and lockdown, and the cost of living crisis.  There are too many children and young people suffering, unable to get the help they need. 

A lot of young people have said at our meetings that they’ve felt under pressure from services to get better quickly, have been made to feel guilty for taking up beds or asking for help in the first place, and have stopped even trying to get help because they’re so tired of fighting for support.  It shouldn’t be a fight. 

We understand that services are under pressure and are trying to help us but it’s not working.  Something has to change and we can help.  As a group we voted on our top priorities and making it easier to access services is one of them.  We want the services that are there to help us to listen to us, to value our opinions and ideas, to take us seriously, to recognise us as experts by experience, and to work with us to improve services, so that all children and young people can get support easily from caring, understanding and unbiased professionals who are out there to help us. 

To book a place please click on the link – further details will be shared on booking a place.