Children's Mental Health Week runs from 6 - 12 February and aims to shine a light on the importance of children and young people's mental health.

Run by children's mental health charity Place2Be, the theme of this year's week is Let's Connect, focusing on forming positive connections.

Children's Mental Health Week is extremely important and that's why we're working hard to highlight it it with everything from hosting a young peoples' takeover event hosted by VOICEBOX at The Music Works, Gloucester, to launching our very special project, Story Corner in partnership with Coventry Building Society.

Young Peoples' Takeover Event at The Music Works

Gloucestershire school children from Year 9, 10 and 11 will be heading to The Music Works on Friday 10 February to share their experiences, ideas and stories around positive mental health for the Young Peoples' Takeover, held in partnership with Gloucestershire NHS Foundation Trust, On Your Mind Glos, The Music Works and CEP.

The afternoon will kick off with the event Young Peoples Experiences of Mental Health, hosted by VOICEBOX. It's inspired by an excellent mental health and wellbeing event that took place as part of the Cheltenham Education Partnership (CEP) takeover in VOICEBOX during The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival.

It'll give young people the space to speak about mental health and wellbeing through performance and conversation. It's set to be an amazing afternoon, jam-packed with creative workshops, an interview panel with mental health professionals and advocates and inspiring student performances.

Charlie Presley at Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) said about the event:  "We are inviting students from secondary schools, across Gloucestershire to share their experiences of mental health during individual or group performance and participate in creative workshops to think about how we can bring meaningful change to local mental health services, with the support of local healthcare commissioners and Children’s Mental Health Leads."

Programming and Strategic Engagement Lead for Cheltenham Science Festival and The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival VOICEBOX, Emma Whittle said: "VOICEBOX exists to turn up the volume on young voices and create meaningful change, and we can’t wait to hear the stories, experiences and ideas that will be shared at the Young Peoples’ Takeover Event. Using creativity to get ideas flowing and bringing industry experts into the room to hear from young people will help us put what matters most on the agenda when it comes to mental health in our communities."

And that's not all. Our Head of Learning & Participation, Sarah Cooksley will be delivering a creative writing workshop on the day using an activity from writing for wellbeing resource The Scribbled Self . The workshop will be an incredible opportunity for young people to be given the space and freedom to express their ideas and feelings creatively.


The Scribbled Self is a creative writing for wellbeing resource curated by young people for young people and edited by Caleb Parkin. It launched at The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival 2022 and was part of the legacy of Beyond Words, a Cheltenham Festivals’ outreach project that ran from 2016-2021. 

The launch of Story Corner

This year's Children's Mental Health Week has a focus on making meaningful connections and encouraging people to connect with others in healthy, rewarding, and meaningful ways. And reading is a great way to do this. What's more, children who read for pleasure have high levels of well-being, engage in learning and are successful in life.

At Cheltenham Festivals we understand how much impact reading can have on children, which is why our Learning & Participation team deliver exciting programmes like Reading Teachers=Reading Pupils (RTRP), to ignites a love of reading in teachers and children. 

To help encourage children to pick up a book, we've partnered with Coventry Building Society to bring you Story Corner. Filmed during The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival, we teamed up with a whole host of special guests who will read a different story for you and the family to enjoy. 

And to celebrate the first day of Children's Mental Health Week we're sharing the first session of Story Corner with UK's Youth Mental Health Ambassador, Dr Alex George who takes us on an adventure with the story of A New House for Mouse by Petr Horacek.

Remember to subscribe to our YouTube channel to catch each Story Corner session the moment they drop.

Find out more



The Scribbled Self

The Scribbled Self

Reading Teachers=Reading Pupils

Reading Teachers=Reading Pupils