Published on 31 January 2020

Ormiston Families announces new goal to mark Children’s Mental Health Week

Encouraged by Children’s Mental Health Week call to ‘find your brave’, we are announcing our plans to extend  services to reach 2,000 more young people who need support across the region …

Around three children in every primary school class has a mental health problem, and many more struggle with challenges from bullying to bereavement.  Children’s Mental Health Week (3rd – 9th February) aims to raise awareness about the importance of children and young people’s mental health using the theme of ‘finding your brave’. Helping families to find the courage to build their resilience and manage life’s challenges is a core aim for Ormiston Families. So, what better time than to announce our own ambitious goals than this week, asks chief executive officer, Allan Myatt:

Place2Be’s Children’s Mental Health Week campaign is a very welcome initiative that is sure to raise much needed awareness about the importance of supporting children and young people to look after their mental health. This need is something that we at Ormiston Families have long been aware of and are keen to do more to respond. In fact, we spent a good part of last year realigning our strategy so that the thousands of children and young people who are struggling to see a brighter future in our region, would find it easier to access expert support,” he advises.

“This year will be our 39th anniversary. We came about because of one family’s tragedy. A young woman, Fiona Ormiston Murray, died whilst on her honeymoon. Fiona loved children and it was no secret that she was excited about starting her own family. Her family devastated by their loss, wanted to do something to honour her memory. They created a charitable trust devoted to helping children in need.

“Since that time what we do and how we do it has changed according to the needs of the communities we serve. Last year it became clear that the overwhelming need was in the area of supporting families to improve the future outlook for their children by focusing on wellbeing services that deliver early and preventive action.

“We set ourselves seven ambitious goals to achieve by the end of 2021, when we will be celebrating our fortieth anniversary. These goals are aligned to the lives of those families across the east of England who are most in need. They include: continuing to deliver (and to develop new) support services for children and young people in care; young mums and mums-to-be; those affected by having a child taken into care, childhood trauma or the imprisonment of a parent and those showing early signs of mental ill health. (Read more about these goals in our Brighter Futures document.) What better time to share these ambitious goals than this week?

“Our core goal is to be there for 2000 more young people in the region who need support. Committing to this in the current funding environment is ambitious, but necessary if we are to progress our vision of every child in every family in the east of England getting the support they need to become safe, healthy and resilient so that that can bounce back from any challenges they face.

“It’s not going to be easy, and we won’t be able to do it without the support of our growing team of dedicated staff, our wide range of funders and partners and our wonderful volunteers, but it needs to be done and we will do everything within our power to deliver.” concludes Allan.

With much research evidencing the massive impact of childhood mental health on adulthood and the effectiveness of early intervention, Ormiston Families’ new strategic direction makes perfect sense.

To get a real flavour of the positive impact Ormiston Families’ work has on the lives of families near you, visit our stories page where you’ll find lots of true stories about children and young people who have found their brave.