Head First Ltd founder and trainer, Dave Miller, has spent the last 25 years supporting young people’s emotional, pastoral and academic needs in state secondary schools as a Teacher, Head of Department, Head of Year, Head of Key Stage and Senior Leader.
Dave quickly understood, from the outset, the importance of looking after the “whole child” rather than just the immediate classroom needs and faced the glaring reality that many young people today are struggling to cope with a wide variety of underlying “issues” which are significantly impacting their day to day lives.
Teachers and other education professionals are ideally placed to recognise that the young people in their care are struggling, as young people spend a significant time with such professionals each day, giving them valuable opportunities to really get to know the young people in their care.
Dave has been privileged to work with excellent teachers, managers and pastoral teams, supported by a range of in school and external agencies who, together, work tirelessly to support young people with a growing array of needs. Much of this work is often “behind the scenes” and requires highly skilled approaches to build and maintain trust with young people, who often do not recognise themselves that they may be suffering from a mental health concern.
In his work as a Senior Leader and Designated Safeguarding Lead over the last ten years, Dave has noticed the clear links between young people and their mental health and stress, family issues, society pressures, the media and a lack of resilience coupled with a teaching profession which is increasingly working under time constraints to be able to deliver the sort of care needed to support young people today.
Dave has trained education professionals, parents and children in safeguarding procedures and mental health awareness over many years, in order to raise the profile of positive mental health in young people and establish effective safeguarding procedures to ensure that young people are well supported and signposted to further professional support.
With published data showing an increase in mental health concerns for young people nationally, there has never been a more appropriate time to ensure that Mental Health First Aid is given the same priority as traditional physical First aid. Consequently, Dave Miller formed Head First Ltd to enable the mental health of young people aged 8-18 to be better supported by those who work and live with them and to reduce the stigma often associated with mental health conditions, through the training of adults in Youth Mental Health First Aid.
Look out for Dave who will be training Youth Mental Health First Aiders at a venue near you in the near future!