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Young people in Sefton help to shape their local NHS

School children from across Sefton have been learning about local health services as well as giving their views on the NHS.

Your Youth Health Day on Thursday 19 July saw pupils from Maricourt Catholic High School in Maghull and Southport’s Stanley High School work with Sefton Young Advisors, to learn which local NHS service is best for them if they are unwell or want some advice on their health and wellbeing.

The event was organised by NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCGs’ joint Engagement and Patient Experience Group (EPEG) which brings together representatives from organisations including Sefton Council, Healthwatch Sefton and Sefton Council for Voluntary Service (CVS) to look at how the CCGs can better involve residents and partners in their work.

Health commissioners were joined at the Formby event by staff from Sefton council to hear young people’s views about health care.

The event saw pupils taken through everyday scenarios, how to lead a healthier lifestyle, and which NHS service to consider for a range of medical issues, ranging from when to get advice from local pharmacists and the NHS111 phone service for minor conditions, to when to call 999.

Ryan McCarthy from Sefton Young Advisors, said: “This event is about getting young people introduced to the health services they might have accessed or access in the future, looking at their knowledge and hopefully improve it by looking health scenarios which may affect them in the future.

“It’s also about looking at their feedback around health services because it’s really important because changes can be made from that and health services can be improved.”

One pupil said: “I didn’t realise how unhealthy I have been – I do go to bed late, spend time on my phone and also don’t have breakfast.  Those are things I’m going to change now.”

This has been the second dedicated young person’s event organside by EPEG, led by Sefton Young Advisers and part of the CCGs’ commitment to ensuring the ‘voice of the child’ is recognised in health services.

Graham Bayliss, lay representative for patient and public engagement at NHS South Sefton CCG, said: “The NHS is all about listening to all its patients, but the voices of young people can sometimes get drowned out by adults.

“It’s important we’re listening to young people and issues they have, as well as the areas of NHS services they’re not sure about.”

On what needs to change about health services, another pupil said: “I think one thing the NHS lacks is mental health support, especially for teens, so if that could be improved that would be really good.”

Gill Brown, governing body lead for patient and public participation for NHS Southport and Formby CCG, said: “They’ve really changed my views about how we communicate with young people, especially around social media.

“One thing that came across is that we need to do more about mental health service provision for young people, particularly in relation to abuse over social media and the impact that can have on young people.”

To watch a video from the event please click here: https://youtu.be/2sCZSRE7ZOI

To find out more about getting involved in the work of your local NHS, please email communications@sefton.nhs.uk or call 0151 317 8456.

Experience the Sefton Circular this summer!

With the summer holidays in full swing, Sefton Council is urging families to get on their bikes and take on the Sefton Circular.

The popular cycle route encompasses 24 miles around the beautiful Sefton coast and countryside, taking anything from three hours to half-a-day to complete.

When following this route, you will cycle through pine woods, pass by Antony Gormley’s statues, take in the sights of the Leeds Liverpool Canal and follow the former Cheshire Lines railway.

Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “We are incredibly lucky to have this fantastic asset in our borough.

“The Sefton Circular is a thoroughly enjoyable half day cycle ride suitable for all abilities to undertake at your own pace.

“The route encompasses many parts of Sefton, showcasing a lot of wonderful things that we have to offer – all the while boosting your mental and physical wellbeing.”

Highlights of the route include Crosby Lakeside, Hightown Dunes, Formby pinewoods, Ainsdale, the Cheshire Lines, Rimrose Valley, the Leeds Liverpool Canal and the Gormleys.

To view the route or for more information about the Sefton Circular Route, visit www.mysefton.co.uk.

George enjoys his new smoke-free life

One Sefton resident is counting the benefits of stopping smoking with Sefton’s free stop smoking service.

George Travers, from Bootle, went to Smokefree Sefton’s clinic at the May Logan Centre and is delighted that he has said goodbye to cigarettes.

“I have been smoking most of my life, at least 20 per day. I’m in my seventies now and was unsure if I would ever quit.

“However, I would like to thank Smokefree Sefton because, after attending Smokefree Sefton and completing the course with the help and support of my advisor, I am now smoke free!”

The other benefit is that George has noticed he’s got more cash to spend and comments: “I am looking forward to my holiday in Spain with the money I have saved. I would say to anyone ‘It’s never too late to stop’.”

Thousands of people in Sefton have also successfully quit smoking with the help of the borough’s free stop smoking service.

Smokefree Sefton, a partner of Living Well Sefton and managed by Solutions 4 Health, offers professional support in a variety of community venues to make it easier for people to get the help they need to stop smoking.

If you would also like to stop smoking then ring Smokefree Sefton, which is commissioned by Public Health Sefton, on 0300 100 1000 for details.

Special toolkit helps schools and youngsters kickstart their volunteer life

A brand new toolkit has launched part of the Year of the Volunteer– packed with information about local volunteer opportunities and creative ideas for fundraising events and activities!

This pack has been produced by Volunteer Centre Sefton, who help individuals and groups with volunteering across the borough.

To download the pack click here

Sefton 4 Good, who help with fundraising for local good causes, also helped put together the brand new toolkit.

For more information about volunteering, please email info@volunteeringsefton.org.uk, and to share your fundraising ideas please contact the Sefton 4 Good team at info@sefton4good.org.uk.

Don’t forget, you can also share your fundraising ideas with Sefton4Good on Twitter @Sefton4Good.

Mental health at the forefront in Sefton

Sefton’s Director of Public Health, Matthew Ashton, is delighted to release this year’s Public Health Annual Report (PHAR) which focus’s on children and young people growing up healthy and happy.

 Presented for the first time in video format, the report explores how children and young people from across the borough approach mental health and wellbeing. Using real-life stories, the film looks at how young people deal with issues such as exams stress, anxiety, worry and looks at the support available throughout Sefton.

 While there is no single reason why children and young people experience problems with their mental health, growing up in challenging home environments; having a disability; being a looked after child or a young carer; not being in education, employment or training; being exposed to domestic abuse; or having a parent with mental health problems can have a negative impact on mental health. 

 In Sefton, the number of people from some of these vulnerable groups is higher than the national average.

 Cllr Ian Moncur, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “In Sefton we are dedicated to creating the right conditions and environments to promote and improve the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people.  

 “The report gives us a chance to consider the opportunities and challenges ahead as Public Health continues to be at the forefront at Sefton Council.”

 Matthew Ashton, Director of Public Health for Sefton and Knowsley, said: “I am pleased to be able to share this year’s annual report, which covers the pressing issue of mental health in young people.

 “Evidence shows that experiencing mental health problems before the age of 14 can affect educational attainment, physical health and impact on social relationships; therefore, leading to poorer outcomes in later life. 

 “For this reason,  Sefton Council continues to work with partners to develop early intervention programmes to promote emotional resilience which will enable children and young people to be able to cope better with difficult circumstances and do well in school and in life.”

The PHAR and a short supplementary document can be viewed online at www.sefton.gov.uk/PHAR

 

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