Mentality visited London to speak to the health committee, who advise the government on improvements needed to the delivery of youth health services. Here’s a write-up of their day out!
The day started with Cari forgetting her packed lunch, Chloe nearly not making the train and Shanika not sharing her scotch eggs with Laura. We got on the train and Laura made us fill in sheets in about the good and bad parts of youth mental health services so we knew what we could bring up at the meeting with the health committee.
Once in London, Laura dragged us straight to M&M World, where Laura and Shanika posed with a series of freakish M&M statues.
Then we got deafened by walking through a London cab driver protest, trapped in a mini Tesco (Shanika wanted salami) and couldn’t find a park that was right next to us. (We ended up sitting on the closest piece of grass we could find.)
Then we headed to the Portculis House for the meeting, where Laura’s bag had a lot of no-nos and we got stopped by security. This was followed by trying to find the toilets that were hidden behind a secret door.
We headed into the scary meeting with the health committee. In this meeting we had to represent young people’s views in regard to the mental health services. We discussed lack of funding, lack of understanding and review meetings by GPs, how schools respond to mental health issues, education in inpatient facilities/not in mainstream school, reshaping PSHE lessons in schools and getting mental health on the curriculum, how young people are treated in CAMHS, how voluntary services are better than statutory services.
So much was discussed, and the health committee said it was the most interesting meeting they ever had!
After all that Shanika was very tired, we had to rush back to Paddington and make a quick detour to Burger King where we had the worst bean burger ever. Then Laura made us do even more work and write this blog on the train…
The report on youth mental health services is due to come out in the in a few months time. So if you have any messages that you want to pass on to the Health Committee please comment, as there is still time!