Today it has been announced £3.3 million, including £484 000 for the South East, will be given to 23 local mental health projects across England.
Statistics reveal that approximately 10 per cent of 5 to 16-year-olds have a clinically diagnosable mental health problem and 75 per cent of mental illness are thought to start before the age of 25.
The funding is focused on providing children and young people aged 25 and below better access to education and support, focusing on early intervention and prevention. The aim is to provide services that are more difficult to access through the NHS and there is an emphasis on improving the support available to groups such as LGBT young people and people from minority and ethnic backgrounds.
As part of the NHS Long Term Plan, the Government has committed to transforming mental health care through a £2.3 billion investment. This further £3.3 million will go to community projects that including arts programmes and counselling.
However, investment has not only been limited to the NHS. £300 million in funding has been granted to The Children and Young People's Mental Health Green Paper, including to incentivise and support schools to train mental health leaders and teams. The focus remains to help young people get the best start in life and provide them with the support and self-care tools they need early on to ease pressure on the NHS and staff.
Gosport MP, Caroline Dinenage, commented:
"It is worrying to see the mental health epidemic that young people across the country face, hindering their confidence, development and prospects so early in life.
"I am pleased to see that this vital funding will go into ensuring that our children get the community support they need to grow up happy and healthy."
Minister for Mental Health Nadine Dorries said:
“We know children and young people today face many pressures at home and in their social and academic lives but giving them easily accessible mental health support at an early age can help them thrive later in life.
“That’s why the government is investing billions every year to transform mental health care, and giving more money to innovative, community-led projects run by people who have chosen to dedicate their lives to supporting young people by providing them with the tools and means they need to manage their own mental health.”
Minister for Public Health Jo Churchill said:
“It’s only right that children and young people are able to access mental health support, not only through the NHS, but in the heart of their communities, schools and homes where they spend the majority of their time.
“The voluntary sector has a hugely important role to play in delivering these kinds of services and our Health and Wellbeing Fund is leading the way in ensuring government plays a role in cultivating the most effective, innovative and successful forms of community support – backed by an extra £2.3 billion a year by 2023/24 to improve NHS mental health services too.”
Kathy Roberts, CEO – Association of Mental Health Providers, said:
“The NHS Long Term Plan made a number of promises for mental health in the next 10 years, including the much-needed scaling up and improvement of support for children and young people.
“The voluntary sector has a key role in transforming mental health care and offers a range support for children and young people. The sector is innovative, has reach into communities, and there is huge potential to expand and scale up its offer. Association of Mental Health Providers therefore welcomes the Health and Wellbeing Fund’s focus on this important area and the funding of 23 exceptional voluntary and community sector projects.”