Action Mental Health (AMH) held their first ever Head First Awards last week to mark 2018’s World Mental Health Day.

The awards recognise organisations and people within education and the community who avail of the pioneering mental health promotion work carried out by the charity’s MensSana team.

Brian Treacy, principal of Holy Trinity Primary School and CAFRE Equine College, Enniskillen were both recognised for their work in tackling Mental Health.

Brian was awarded Highly Commended in the Championing Young People’s Mental Health category.

He has been proactive in promotion of mental health awareness among primary schools and parents in Enniskillen and throughout Fermanagh.

Brian took the initiative to attend the local Family Early Intervention hub meetings where he was made aware of Action Mental Health Mensana services.

From there he organised ‘Healthy Me’ sessions for the children and teachers in his school and shared information out through the Enniskillen Cluster schools programme.

Brian has organised two health and wellbeing months for children and parents and has encouraged involvement of teachers and children in promoting messages of positive mental health and wellbeing through the creation of a ‘Healthy Me’ wall in the school.

The panel felt Brian’s actions demonstrated innovation and leadership and that he deserved recognition for the use of his position to positively influence others.

Commenting on his award, Brian paid tribute to the staff of Holy Trinity who have given up so much of their time in supporting children’s mental health.

“I’m delighted the work of the staff in Holy Trinity in supporting children’s mental health has been acknowledged. The promotion of positive mental health is vital for all children especially in todays society and with the support of people like Rosie Maguire from Action Mental Health we have been able to put some programmes in place and we will continue to work hard in this area to support our children in the coming years.”

CAFRE came out top in the Fundraising Initiative category. The college dedicated an entire year to fundraising for AMH with a range of events hosted including a Christmas show and Quiz, a pyjamas and movie day, and a ‘Hell on the Hill’ Challenge Obstacle race.

Students had also visited their local AMH New Horizons Service to meet and speak with some of the service users. The panel were particularly impressed by the fact that the initiatives were all student led and had involved partnership working and communicating key messages to peers.