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Volunteer Advisory Panel Member - Rethinking Children's Mental Health

Health Action Research Group


Posted over 30 days ago...

Would you like to use your mental health research expertise to help a health think tank encourage fresh, non-pathologizing approaches to young people’s mental health - which address underlying economic and societal risk factors?


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London, WC2N 6EZ

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Expires at anytime

What will you be doing?

We are looking for Advisory Panel Members who can each help with at least two of the following:

Advise on research methodology for new research projects – including the suitability of the approach, methods of enquiry and ethical considerations. Review grant applications Help review our research findings to ensure they are robust and stand up to scrutiny, including potential peer review. Suggest future directions for research 

You’ll be helping us make the most of our research projects, alongside our Trustees, a team of graduate volunteer researchers, and health research partners (currently at Derby University, Greenwich University, King’s College London and the U3A). Meetings are usually via Zoom to enable participation as widely as possible.   Our volunteer researchers (with a Masters or PhD) undertake secondary research to seek to identify the underlying causes of preventable illness, as well as any initiatives internationally which have reduced these health risks and could potentially be adopted or adapted for use in the UK - whilst our partnership with university researchers enables complementary primary research to be undertaken. This research then enables us to produce sometimes fresh perspectives to help influence health policy and practice. For example, our research suggests that current approaches to young people's mental health are too one dimensional, seeing this as a primarily medical issue requiring ever-more support from mental health professionals, whereas research suggests:

The biggest single preventable risk factor for serious mental health conditions is deprivation arising from poverty - which requires political rather than medical intervention.   A range of activities and experiences which don't have a mental health label (such as active play, a healthy diet, physical activity, the creative and performing arts and even being a Guide or Scout) appear to be protective of young people's mental health.

This suggests it may be time to rethink how children and young people’s mental health can best be protected. We therefore welcome Advisory Panel members who can help advise how best to pursue evidence-based research to achieve this.

What are we looking for?

A mental health-related PhD and publications. Research experience which has enabled you to achieve appointment as a Senior Lecturer/Associate Professor, Senior Research Fellow or Professor in the UK. An interest in a holistic approach to children's mental health A commitment to evidence-based research Support for our guiding principle that prevention is better than cure

Experience of securing research funding would be an added recommendation.

What difference will you make?

As an Advisory Panel member you will be particularly well placed to influence our development as a health think tank - and hopefully also to influence wider thinking on what works when it comes to encouraging positive mental health. We seek to influence both policy and practice. For example, given the possibility of a change of government later this year, in February we met with Luciana Berger, who is leading Labour's Mental Health Review. Following the meeting we provided a range of evidence she had expressed interest in, which she has found very helpful. We are also in contact with Abena Oppong-Asare, Labour's Shadow Minister for Women's Health and Mental Health, for whom we are organising a round table meeting on protecting children's mental health.  Following our research into Student Mental Health, in partnership with Greenwich University, King's College London and Ulster University (which you can see the report of on our website) we have recently started work with three universities and the U3A on a potential bid for funding for a follow-up intergenerational research project.


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