21st July 2020
End of term 2020...where does that leave us?
So I have been threatening to create a blog for quite some time, and as always - time simply runs away with us, and every intention I had became absorbed with ensuring my business survived COVID. However, on the plus side, I built a bar (don't ask!), and a bench for the 'beer garden' (again, best not to ask), reignited my passion for poetry and redeveloped my programme as an online resource, which I am super proud of.
So from a business perspective, lockdown started with great excitement as we decided to transmit to 'the nation' on Facebook Live; our viewing figures steadily grew, and we got caught up with the momentum of this and went to a company we have developed a fabulous working relationship with called Services4Schools Ltd to gauge their thoughts about creating our programme on a more professional footing, and, with their support, we were good to go. We appreciate that schools and teachers really have been swallowed up by the tsunami that has been COVID, and understandably various aspects of the curriculum have had to take a back seat, but we are hoping that the new term will bring about a desire (and necessity) for mental health support again in schools. Even if I say it myself, the online programme is really good - engaging and fun, everything here at Thumbs Up we love to bring to such an important topic, after all, one of our many ethoses is 'if a child is having fun and is engaged, then their ability to digest strategies surrounding mental health and wellbeing is so much more effective'.
So what makes Thumbs Up different?
We love to stand out from the crowd! We tackle mental health with humour, interaction and passion for the subject. Every child matters (another ethos!), and each and every one is made to feel as valued as another. We pride ourselves on ensuring that children not only enjoy the sessions, but take away invaluable strategies to take forward throughout their lives. We base our programme around Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), and techniques associated with this style of therapy. CBT is very forward thinking, and tends to 'build' on the past rather than to 'delve', therefore relieving any pressures on the children to discuss any past experiences. We work on 'acceptance' (that the past has happened) and look forward with renewed optimism and focus. Our 'core' programme is our Essential Life Skills programme, this covers exactly 'what it says on the tin' (excuse the cliche!); over the years this programme has evolved from a four week programme into a six week programme thus enabling us to give certain areas more depth (eg mindfulness, anger management). There are many 'off-shoots' of this programme, that we refer to as our 'add-on' sessions; these sessions have been borne out of the needs of individual schools, and identifying certain aspects of wellbeing that requires a 'standalone' session. For instance, the last 'add-on' session we developed is one we call 'Acceptance, Inclusion and Tolerance', looking at how children deal with minorty groups - this has been very successful and drives us to keep Thumbs Up evolving with the times we are in, to ensure that we are giving our schools/children/parents/carers/teachers the best product that we can.
We will be 'blogging' from here on in, on a regular basis. If there is anything you would like us to cover, please do get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Next time we will be looking at how Thumbs Up came about, how a seed of an idea blossomed (right I am going to go before I say 'on a journey' - terrible cliche!). After these first few posts, we will be primarily looking at teacher, parent/carer wellbeing, prioritising YOU, we hope we can provide you with some support.
But for now...
Sue and Team Thumbs Up