One in four 14-year-old girls self-harm, reports Children’s Society

The Children’s Society | August 2018 | The Good Childhood Report 2018

Every year The Children’s Society produces a wellbeing report, a comprehensive report into children’s wellbeing to hear what children have to say about their lives, what makes them happy and what needs to be improved for this generation. 

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Key findings from the report:

  • Pressure to fit in with society’s expectations is making children unhappy
  • Alarming numbers of children are self-harming
  • Non-stop comments about appearance are harmful to girls’ well-being
  • Outdated gender stereotypes are damaging to boys’ and girls’ happiness
  • Family relationships are particularly important for girls

Children’s Society press release One in four 14-year-old girls self-harm

Read the full report at The Children’s Society

The Good Child Summary report  available here 


In the media:

BBC News Quarter of 14 year old girls self-harm 

The Telegraph Quarter of 14 year old girls self-harm, study finds, amid warning of ‘crisis in children’s mental health’ 

The Guardian Quarter of 14-year-old girls in UK have self-harmed, report finds


Review Of Children And Young People’s Mental Health Services: Phase One Report

This report confirms many of the issues raised in the Five year forward view for mental health and comments on the difficulties children and young people face in accessing appropriate support for their mental health concerns from a system that is fragmented and where services vary in quality | Care Quality Commission 


This report is the first phase of a major thematic review requested by the Prime Minister in January 2017. The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has drawn on existing reports, research and other evidence and its inspections of children and young people’s mental health services, as well as conversations with young people to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the current system.

CQC has found that, whilst most specialist services provide good quality care, too many young people find it difficult to access services and so, do not receive the care that they need when they need it. One young person told CQC that they waited 18 months to receive help.

This report also lays the foundations for the next phase of CQC’s review. Phase two will seek to identify where has there been real change in the system, where change has been slower and what was needed to drive better care.

Calls for new Prime Minister’s Challenge on children’s mental health

Education Policy Institute | Published online: November 2016

Image source: EPI

The Education Policy Institute has identified that specialist mental health services are, on average, turning away 23 per cent, or almost one in four, children and young people referred to them for treatment by their teachers or GPs. We also identified a postcode lottery of waiting times for those whose referrals were accepted.

The Institute’s investigation into progress and challenges in the transformation of children and young people’s mental health care has found wide variation in the quality of local strategies. Under our scoring system, only 15 per cent of local areas were found to have ‘good’ plans. We also identified significant barriers to progress. For example, 8 out of 10 providers face recruitment difficulties, and there has been an 80 per cent increase in expenditure on temporary staffing in the last two years.

Read an overview here

Read the full report here

Gender and children and young people’s emotional and mental health: manifestations and responses

Hamblin, E. Gender and children and young people’s emotional and mental health: manifestations and responses. A rapid review of the evidence. | National Childrens Bureau


This document aims to provide a snapshot of the most recent and salient evidence from published research and grey literature, as relevant to children and young people living in England in 2016. It addresses children and young people’s emotional and mental health difficulties as they manifest and are responded to, highlighting and exploring gender-related issues behind observed patterns across areas of mental health.

This rapid review presents evidence of clear gender differences in children and young people’s emotional and mental health, in terms of:

1. the general picture of children and young people’s emotional and mental health

2. the prevalence of specific difficulties and issues among children and young people

3. children and young people’s coping strategies and help-seeking behaviours

4. responses to children and young people’s emotional and mental health needs from parents and carers, schools, and public services

5. service responses to the needs of some particular groups of children and young people.


Best start in life: Promoting good emotional wellbeing and mental health for children and young people

LGA. Published online July 2016

Best start in life Promoting good emotional wellbeing and mental health for children and young people
Image source: LGA

Summary of the key messages: Mental health and wellbeing in childhood – why it matters

Pregnancy and early years: critical to a child’s long-term development. Early interactions directly affect the way the brain develops and so the relationship between baby and parents is vital.

Five to 10: once a child has fallen behind in the early years they are more likely to fall further behind than catch up.

11 to 25: those with mental health and conduct disorders are twice as likely to leave school without qualifications.

Key stats

  • One in four babies live in households affected by domestic violence, mental illness or drug and alcohol problems.
  • One in five mothers suffer from depression, anxiety or in some cases psychosis during pregnancy or the first year after birth. Teenage mothers are three times more likely to suffer from post-natal depression.
  • The cost to the economy is estimated at £8.1 billion for each annual birth cohort – that’s almost £10,000 per baby. Nearly three quarters of that is linked to the impact on the child.
  • Three quarters of mental health problems develop before the ages of 18.

Read the full report here

A review of recent evidence into children and young people’s mental health

Missed opportunities: a review of recent evidence into children and young people’s mental health
Centre For Mental Health, 7 June 2016

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This document seeks to piece together the evidence about children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing in the UK, based on the most recent high quality research.

It breaks down findings into four age groups: pregnancy to age 4; children aged 5-10, 11-15 year olds, and young adults aged 16-25.

For all age groups, a dominant issue has been the persistent gap between children’s needs and their access to help and support, especially early on when difficulties with mental health first emerge.


YoungMinds along with the Royal College of Psychiatrists and the Children and Young People’s Mental Health Coalition today launch a Commission to improve mental healthcare provision for children and young people.

The Commission, chaired by Baroness Claire Tyler, focuses on what really matters to the children and young people who rely on the support of Children and Adolescents Mental Health services (CAMHS). It enforces the importance of involving young people, their parents and their carers alongside CAMHS professionals, partner agencies and commissioner when developing how these services are delivered.


Final recommendations from the Commission include:

  • Recommendations for service providers, commissioners and managers on improvements to the current service, based on updated core values
  • Recommendations on training requirements for service providers, commissioners and managers
  • Recommendations for the education and training of CAMHS staff
  • Recommendations for key UK health organisations including Department of Health, NHS England and the devolved assemblies’ Health Services and Departments of Health

Read the full article via YoungMinds