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  • Writer's picturealicia brown

The David Brown Foundation Mental Health Conference: A Beacon of Hope for Schools

Mental health has become a pressing concern in schools, exacerbated by the far-reaching impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. In an effort to address this critical issue, the David Brown Foundation organised a groundbreaking Mental Health Conference at Arkham Bryan College in York. Attended by over 50 teachers from the surrounding areas, the conference aimed to equip educators with valuable insights and tools to combat mental health problems in schools. With speakers like Sara Wray from Live Well Consulting and Danny Wilshire from Damaged Goods Go, the event proved to be an enlightening and inspirational experience for all attendees.


Sara Wray: Empowering Teachers with Mental Health First Aid Tools The conference kicked off with a thought-provoking presentation by Sara Wray, a mental health expert from Live Well Consulting. Drawing from her wealth of knowledge and experience, Wray shed light on the warning signs of mental health issues and introduced teachers to the concept of "Mental Health First Aid." This approach equips educators with the skills to identify and respond effectively to mental health challenges among students. By imparting practical tools and techniques, Wray empowered teachers to create supportive environments within schools, ensuring that students receive the care they need.


Danny Wilshire: A Personal Journey of Triumph and Inspiration The second speaker at the conference was Danny Wilshire, an individual who had personally battled extreme mental health difficulties. Through his organization, Damaged Goods Go, Wilshire shared his raw and personal story of struggle and triumph. His heartfelt and inspirational talk offered a unique perspective, helping teachers gain a deeper understanding of the challenges faced by individuals experiencing mental health issues. Wilshire's resilience and determination served as a beacon of hope, reminding educators of the transformative impact they can have on their students' lives.


The David Brown Foundation Mental Health Conference was met with resounding success and rave reviews from all attendees. Teachers found the conference to be a valuable platform for learning and networking, enabling them to enhance their skills in supporting students' mental well-being. The event's comprehensive approach, combining expert knowledge with personal experiences, ensured that teachers received a well-rounded understanding of the subject matter.

The conference provided a safe space for teachers to openly discuss their concerns and share their own experiences in dealing with mental health challenges. The collaborative atmosphere fostered a sense of unity and solidarity among educators, encouraging them to support one another in their vital roles as mental health advocates.


The David Brown Foundation Mental Health Conference served as a catalyst for change within the education community. Armed with new insights, tools, and an invigorated sense of purpose, teachers returned to their schools ready to tackle mental health problems head-on. The conference emphasized the importance of ongoing support, encouraging educators to continue their professional development in the field of mental health.


The success of this conference highlights the urgent need for increased mental health resources and awareness within educational institutions. By prioritising mental well-being, schools can create safe and nurturing environments where students can thrive academically, emotionally, and socially. We therefore hope to make this an annual event.



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