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Bracknell Forest children and young people’s self-harm workforce project

The workforce survey is now live, share your experience and make sure your views are included here

The Oxford Academic Health Science Network (Oxford AHSN) and University of Oxford Department of Psychiatry are collaborating on a Self-Harm Workforce Project with Bracknell Forest Council and Brighter Futures Together within Bracknell Forest in Berkshire.

We would like to engage with anyone who works with, or supports, children and young people (CYP) who live, study or receive care within Bracknell Forest. Your input will help us to shape a multidisciplinary, holistic approach to self-harm across Bracknell Forest.

This self-harm CYP workforce development project is funded and supported by Bracknell Forest public health as part of the Health and Wellbeing strategy 2022-2026.

The first step to getting involved in this project is to join our learning network. After signing up, you will receive occasional surveys and updates by email from us and our colleagues at Bracknell Forest Council.  We will not sell or distribute your email address to any other third party at any time. We look forward to keeping in touch and engaging with you as our project progresses.

Why are we focusing on children and young people’s self-harm workforce development?

Self-harm in young people is a significant public health concern with around one fifth of 15-year-olds thought to have self-harmed at some point.

The causes and triggers for self-harm are complex and those supporting young people can find self-harm a distressing or difficult issue to deal with. Understandably, those working with young people want to know how best to support them safely and appropriately. However, sources of support available vary and not always known by professionals working on the ground.

The support available to young people who self-harm is broad and varied depending on local context, and there is a need to understand these initiatives collectively across services and staffing groups.

This project has been developed following the publication of the new National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidance on self-harm which, for the first time, also contains recommendations for education.

If you work with young people within the Bracknell Forest area, we hope that you will be able to contribute to this project which will benefit those supporting young people locally. Join the learning network here.

What are we doing?

We want to bring together the CYP workforce from across the Bracknell Forest geography to help us better understand professionals’ knowledge, responses and confidence in supporting CYP who self-harm. We would like our approach to be empowering, connecting those closest to young people to those who can help to drive change. We want to hear from those with unique perspectives, particularly those that may be seldom heard or those that do not, ordinarily, influence decision-making in this space.

Three online launch webinars were held on Tuesday 21 February 2023 to seek initial engagement with colleagues across Bracknell Forest. We enjoyed the company of almost 100 participants on the day and we look forward to continuing the conversations we started via these events.

The slides from the learning event can be found here: Bracknell Forest Young People’s Self-Harm Workforce Project Launch Presentation.

We would like to invite you to join us on this journey as part of our Learning Network.

Next steps

An online Workforce Survey is now live to gather the views and experience of those working with CYP within Bracknell Forest – we hope that you and your colleagues will complete this.

This survey is anonymous to allow participants to offer their experiences, both professional and personal, as candidly and as fully as possible.

We will also be inviting you to join us for reflective sessions in late March and April 2023. These will be facilitated, face-to-face sessions at Bracknell Forest Council’s Time Square offices which have ample nearby parking and public transport links. See the full list of reflective session dates and times here.

These sessions will be designed to encourage multi-disciplinary networking and sharing of ideas. They will comprise of up to 12 participants and we will seek to establish ‘brave spaces’ where all ideas can be expressed in a spirit of open-mindedness, mutual respect and free from any pressure to problem solve or fix. We hope that you and your colleagues will be free and willing to join us for one of these two-hour sessions.

Again, anything shared within these sessions will be treated anonymously and comments will not be attributed to any individual. Sessions will not be recorded and any feedback or points raised will be written – in full sight of all participants – on whiteboards to allow for an open and transparent approach.

If you would like to learn more about this project or would like to raise any questions, please contact [email protected]