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Healthy Minds Day 2011

On Saturday 2nd July 2011 Dorset DCS held a ‘Healthy Minds Day”. The event was a rare opportunity to hear Caroline Doherty, Emotional Health and Wellbeing Manager of the National Deaf Children’s Society. This was a new venture for Dorset DCS as we had never held an event like this before. 

All young people experience obstacles and challenges, but being deaf can place children at a disadvantage. In particular, some young deaf people are at risk of developing negative feelings of insecurity, insignificance and isolation.  The training with Caroline places an emphasis on young deaf people finding their own solutions to the problems they may encounter.  During the training they discovered how to support the management of deafness, build confidence and resilience, develop a good self-image and learn how to help overcome hurdles and obstacles faced throughout everyday life as a deaf child or young person.

The Hearing Support Service also organised a separate training day with Caroline for Teaching Assistants supporting HI pupils.  So the children’s TA’s may also have benefitted from the same training.

The day started with the children’s with Caroline whilst the parents listened to a talk from Martin Smith, Head of the Hearing Impaired Service, about the service and the current climate.  This was well received as this is a very topical subject at the moment and parents were able to get a better understanding of the how the service is operates.


After the delicious lunch served by the Trustees which included cakes and pavlovas made by Sue Morley the parents had their session with Caroline and were able to gain a better understanding of issues for a deaf/hearing impaired child and how to build confidence.  There was a lot of laughter during the afternoon and the parents really enjoyed this session.  The children had a great afternoon playing games in the sunshine supervised by Ursula Murley, Ken Tucker and Jon Hickman.

Also available on the day were resources and information on display from the Hearing Support Service, NDCS, Forest Book Shop, SOECIC, Dorset DCS, Connevans and SONUS.  The whole day added up to a very informative and enjoyable day for the families that attended.

DDCS asked the parents and children to complete feedback forms about how they felt the day had gone.  Of the twenty families who returned forms twenty rated the organisation “Excellent”, nineteen rated the talks “excellent” and one rated them “good”.

Here are some of the comments made by the parents:

"Excellent day, lots of information, fantastic lunch”

“Absolutely fantastic, very informative and eye opening”


“Martin Smith – very interesting, Caroline – absolutely inspirational”

“I think the DDCS do a wonderful job and today has been fantastic and extremely helpful”

“Today has been a wonderful one, very informative and so glad to be updated on matters that concern our child.  A very big thank you to all the people involved”

 Comments from Children who attended the day:

"It was fun and good to see some of my friends and I made new friends as well”

“It was excellent 10/10”

“It was very fun and interesting”

Many thanks to all the helpers on the day, without their help the day could not have been such a brilliant success!

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