Worksop dance school recruits counsellor for youngsters battling with mental health
A Worksop dance school is teaming up with a counsellor on mission to help young people who struggle to access mental health support.
Rebecca’s Dance Studio (RDS) will be providing on-hand specialist counselling with help from Rachel Hodges - a Worksop mum-of-eight.
Rachel will provide support to dancers in need of additional, impartial support and a friendly face they can come to with a parent or guardian for a chat.
Experienced singer Rachel is specialising in counselling children, young people and their families after noting a ‘massive gap’ in provision for youngsters while seeking help for her own children.
Her own daughter waited eight weeks to hear from mental health specialists while suffering severe anxiety and unable to attend school due to a crippling fear of public places.
She said: “There is a desperate need for this type of support as GP waiting lists are too long.
“Dancing is creative and expressive and is a safe place for people to be with their friends and teachers.
“But we all have those days when times are tough - it may be auditions, fallouts, home life, or just life in general.”
RDS Principal Rebecca Doona said the new service - named Project Spotlight - would give teachers specialist training to equip them with mental health first-aid and enable them to help young dancers appropriately when needed.
Training will allow them to identify where young people need support and refer them to Rachel.
Rebecca said: “We strive to create a place which enables children to achieve their dreams and aspirations but sometimes a young person can need extra support to do this.”
RDS pupil Alix Poxon - who suffered crippling panic attacks due to the pressure of performing - described Rachel's support as ‘a huge opportunity for everyone’.
She added: “Nobody talks about the mental side of things - how my mental health had such a big impact on my physical health too.
“I was ill in more ways than one and I started seeing professionals for my mental health just as often as I saw doctors for my physical health.
“And this is where everything changed - I felt acceptance for the first time.”
For more about RDS click HERE.