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Kernow Connect

What is the Blues!?

What is the Blues!?

A programme to respond to early signs of depression amongst young people

Blues is a 6 week Cognitive Behavioural Group Depression Prevention programme for 13 – 19 year olds that actively engages students with depressive symptoms or at risk of onset of major depression in weekly, one-hour group sessions and home practice assignments. Sessions focus on building group rapport and increasing participant involvement in pleasant activities, learning and practicing cognitive restructuring techniques, and developing response plans to future life stressors. In-session exercises require participants to apply skills taught in the programme. Home practice assignments reinforce the skills taught and help participants learn how to apply these skills to their daily life. Research undertaken has demonstrated proven outcomes in the following areas:

  • Depression and depressive symptoms
  • Reductions in illicit Drug use and self-reported substance use
  • Lower rates of major depression onset at six-month follow-up
  • Effects on risk and protective factors (including social functioning in school)

The programme will be delivered in schools by Action for Children staff who will be trained in delivering the programme. Promotional literature and programme information will be made available to the school, parents and students beforehand.

Schools that are selected to be involved in the programme will be required to support the process by:

  • Meeting with the delivery team to decide on timing of group work sessions
  • Providing a private space in school for the group to meet
  • Identifying space on student timetables for them to be engaged in the group work (there is also the option for groups to run pre-school, lunch time and after school if that is preferred by the school)
  • Sharing promotional literature with parents and students
  • Supporting student completion of a short (one side) screening questionnaire with all students aged 13-16 and returning the completed forms to Action for Children
  • Reviewing the process for enabling student access to the programme, post group work delivery

Schools will also need to consider the work that will be required to achieve sustainable funding for continued delivery the programme after our initial delivery funding expires.

For more information click here.