GMLPF research amongst providers of apprenticeships and other training has revealed the scale of mental health problems in the skills sector across the Liverpool City Region.
The research was conducted with GMLPF members as part of the National Lottery Community Fund GMLPF Minds project. The findings confirm that mental health challenges faced by learners are having an ongoing negative impact on the delivery of training including Apprenticeships. The research shows that the problem has escalated and reveals also that mental ill-health amongst learning provider staff is also starting to become an issue.
More than 80 per cent of GMLPF members report that mental ill-health is having an impact on the delivery of training. The main issues cited as being experienced by learners are anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, substance abuse and self-harm. The worrying statistics also include evidence that absence and students dropping out is frequently linked to these mental health issues.
Ian Lomas, Chief Executive of GMLPF says:
“Young people are starting apprenticeships and other training with existing pressures that include poverty, stress and lack of resilience. National figures show the 16-24 age group is the most likely to experience stress or anxiety. Worryingly, learners are not seeking the help they need. Dealing with the fall out has a knock-on effect for our members’ staff, increasing their own stress levels.”
The GMLPF Minds project has received nearly £10,000 from the National Lottery Community Fund. The money has been spent on understanding the local issues and a tranche of the award will go towards mental health awareness training for provider staff.
“The funding has made it possible for us to introduce much-needed training for provider staff. Providers are being offered mental health awareness and first aid training at a greatly reduced rate.”
AT Skills are delivering the mental health awareness and first aid course at a modern training facility in Huyton. The Maggie O’Neill Community Resource Centre in Knowsley will host the two-day course starting on Wednesday 16th October.
Alan Reddin from AT Skills told us:
“We first ran this course in January. The feedback was overwhelming and provider staff expressed how critical and useful the training is for the modern-day challenges they face. Participants gain a Level 2 Award.”
The course offers great value and will help tackle the daily challenges when participants return to the workplace.
The research findings suggest that one in every three of Liverpool City Region learners experiences mental health issues. Providers are spending more time on dealing with learners’ mental ill-health. This places a drain on the resources of provider staff.
Attendees will gain an understanding of mental health and the main disorders they need to be aware of. Alongside this, they will have a good grasp of how to access support and advice. A cornerstone element of the training is about recognising and responding to the signs of mental ill-health.
Alan from AT Skills explains how attending the course will be effective when participants return to the workplace:
“The training will help providers to tackle mental health issues sooner and we expect this to improve learner success rates and reduce the strain on resources.”
Money from The National Lottery Community Fund will be used to subsidise the costs of training. GMLPF members can attend the two-day course for just £130.