ENGLAND’S largest youth-centred wellbeing programme is coming to Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, starting in Spring.

#BeeWell, which has been running in Greater Manchester since 2021, will be delivered across all four local authorities in the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care System area.

The programme will seek the views of the region’s young people so to influence and improve the wellbeing services available to them, both locally and nationally.

Founded by the University of Manchester, National Lottery Community Fund, Anna Freud Centre and Gregson Family Foundation, the programme will survey young people in topics such as their emotions, relationships, aspirations, and health.

The survey is designed in collaboration with young people and will be delivered in Autumn 2023 to secondary-age pupils in mainstream schools, special schools, independent schools and alternative provision settings.

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Anonymised results will then be shared privately with schools, and publicly via an online neighbourhood dashboard with the aim of inspiring action across local government and civil society.

Hampshire County Council’s executive lead member for children’s services, Cllr Edward Heron, said: “We are incredibly privileged to be working alongside our colleagues in local government to deliver #BeeWell across the region, and to be part of the early steps towards making it a nationally recognised programme.

“The pressures on mental health services for young people nationally are widely known. We have seen an increase in young people facing challenges with their mental health since the pandemic and the rising cost of living looks set to add further to this. The launch of the #BeeWell programme in our region provides a timely opportunity to explore how we can improve local services, while being part of a bigger conversation to bring much needed change on a national scale.”

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More than £4m, including £1.6m from the National Lottery, has been raised by the programme’s founders to deliver #BeeWell in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight over three years.

Now in its third year, the #BeeWell programme has listened to more than 60,000 young people in Manchester and led partners such as the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award and Arts Council England as well as local voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations in using investments and where they are needed most for young people.

#BeeWell’s academic lead, Neil Humphrey, said: “I am absolutely delighted that we are able to bring #BeeWell to a second location. All four local authorities share our vision to make young people’s wellbeing everybody’s business, and we are excited to work with young people in the region to create a version of the programme that builds on the strengths and successes of our work in Greater Manchester while also meeting locally identified priorities.”

Schools and organisations interested in the #BeeWell programme in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight can contact hiow.beewell@hants.gov.uk.