East Barnet School set up peer support group

February 27, 2020

Some of East Barnet School’s Wellbeing Warriors: l-r: Eleni Petrou, Melise Kemal, Kiera Ryan, Emily Vince, Marisa Ioannou, Stefanie Panayiotou, Emilia Theodosiou

Wellbeing Warriors help fellow students address issues to improve their mental health

We, the Wellbeing Warriors at East Barnet School sixth form, are not only a group of friends, but a community that promotes wellbeing and mental health in and around our school.

When contemplating our leadership roles at school, we found a gap where nobody was addressing the challenges that students can face with their wellbeing.

Not only can this affect their school work and behaviour, but also their lives at home. That’s why we formed the Wellbeing Warriors, in the hope of finding solutions for these issues.

To be involved in having such a big impact on our fellow students’ wellbeing makes us feel exuberant. Not only are we helping others find ways to overcome their challenges, we are also providing a platform for people to become more open minded and feel comfortable to talk about and address mental health issues.

No one should be afraid to ask for help!

Firmer friendships
One aspect we have found to affect wellbeing is the need to have friendships and specifically the confidence associated with this. This is especially a problem in Year 7, a time when many people find it hard being new and forming new friendships due to the harsh transition from primary school.

Our solution is a Wellbeing Warriors Club! Every Thursday lunchtime, Year 7 students can attend our club, and are given the opportunity to make new friends with people in their year group they wouldn’t otherwise get to know. They also gain support from our Wellbeing Warriors team, with the aim of forming firmer friendships.

Better behaviour
Another aspect affecting wellbeing is behaviour. Wellbeing Warriors are welcoming and accessible around the school, and easy to find due to our green badges that promote the ethos we stand for. This allows students acting out, with bad behaviour in lessons, a chance to consult with our team, gaining the necessary guidance to resolve conflicts and get their behaviour back on track.

Happier home life
Within our Wellbeing Warrior team, certain members have previously dealt with the heartache surrounding issues at home, when a family is experiencing a conflict or even a detrimental divorce.

As a result, a few of us have written poems about how we felt whilst experiencing similar situations. We have also written follow up poems about how everything can get better, enabling other students to know that they always have someone to talk to and that they are never alone.

Schoolwork support
In order to prevent problems occurring within lessons, we are planning a Wellbeing Walk once a week in the morning before school. This is to start the day right, in the fresh air with a fresh mind.

This early intervention allows students to get all their energy out before lessons, preventing potential issues which could negatively impact not only their learning but the learning of others. We can also offer homework and learning support.

Inspiring individuality
Our excellent Wellbeing Warriors are happy to provide one-to-one or even group mentoring sessions if students are facing difficulties surrounding their individuality or other challenges in and around school.

This has allowed students to develop personal connections with us. They receive guidance, knowing they don’t have to give in to peer pressure and should always be true to themselves.

To find out more about East Barnet School’s Wellbeing Warriors contact Jay Idrees, Jidrees@eastbarnetschool.com. After all, we all need a helping hand sometimes!

Wellbeing Warriors has been set up by students at East Barnet School to help fellow students improve their mental health.

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