The Resilience Academy offers programmes for secondary school students aimed at equipping them with emotional resilience tools.

Skills training programmes aim to increase protective factors such as coping skills, problem solving, decision making, and cognitive skills. While these programmes don’t directly target suicide, by targeting risk factors and giving youth important skills, the goal is to prevent the development of suicidal behaviour.

We aim to equip young people with the skills and knowledge to support themselves not just now but long into the future.

Key Aims:

  • Enhancing protective factors,

  • Developing coping skills,

  • Increasing self efficacy,

  • Increase awareness of supports,

  • Encouraging help seeking behaviour,

  • Reducing Stigma

Background

Background

The National Suicide Research Foundation (2017) have declared that the roll-out of evidence based mental health awareness programmes in Irish schools should be undertaken as a matter of priority in order to develop mental health literacy, promote positive mental health, and prevent suicide in adolescents.

The Resilience Academy offers such programmes.

The Resilience Academy was originally developed in response to a 163% increase in people under the age of 18 presenting due to suicide or self-harm between 2011 and 2016 (Pieta House, 2016).

Resilience Academy programmes are in line with recommendations in relation to the development of school-based suicide prevention programmes (Surgenor, Quinn, & Hughes, 2016). In addition, the content was informed by in-house psychotherapists, interviews with school staff, focus groups with students, and input from industry experts in areas such as body image, cyber bullying, occupational stress, LGBT+ issues.

Service Demands

This is a demand led service, meaning that schools are requesting our Resilience Academy programmes. Schools are the experts in issues that affect their students – they understand the importance of mental health education for young people – however many are not in the position to facilitate this type of education in-house.

How are we funding the Resilience Academy?

The roll-out of the Resilience Academy is reliant on donations and contributions from voluntary sources. We are asking schools who are receiving the Resilience Academy to consider supporting us with a fundraiser or donation. This will allow us to sustain the Resilience Academy and reach more students.

1. Road to Resilience Programme

Road to Resilience Programme

The Road to Resilience Programme is delivered through a combination of:

  1. teacher (as the facilitator)

  2. recorded video messages from Resilience Academy Facilitators (within the presentations)

  3. a workbook for the students

The teacher will be the main person delivering the content with the support of a designated Resilience Academy Facilitator. This programme is for Junior Cycle groups.

Each module is designed to be delivered in one class period, with approximately 35 minutes for the presentation and activities, and 5 minutes allowed for set up. Students are signposted to helpful services for all topics covered throughout the programme.

The Road to Resilience Programme is delivered over four modules:
Teacher Support

The Road to Resilience Programme includes a session, ‘Nurturing Your Resilience’, for school staff which incorporates both signposting and wellbeing interventions for teachers. This presentation is delivered by Pieta’s Clinical Team and is available on the Road to Resilience online portal.

Before delivering the Road to Resilience Programme to students, teachers receive all necessary content, materials and contact details for their designated Resilience Academy Facilitator.

The Resilience Academy Facilitators are available to support teachers throughout the delivery of the programme.

2. Building Resilience An Introductory Workshop

Building Resilience ‘An Introductory Workshop’

Building Resilience ‘An Introductory Workshop’ is a 35-minute workshop for all post-primary school students where we share six ways for young people to build their resilience.

During this workshop, we share the services and supports that are available to students and give the students an insight into the work we do in the Resilience Academy.

What is Covered in the Workshop?

Teacher Support

When schools sign up for Building Resilience ‘An Introductory Workshop’, they receive a link to our online portal where they can access and download:

  1. a recorded presentation from Resilience Academy Facilitators for teachers to share with students

  2. worksheets with student activities

  3. teacher information booklet

Schools will also receive contact details for their designated Resilience Academy Facilitator.

The Resilience Academy Facilitators are available to support teachers delivering the workshop.

3. Resilience Academy 6 Week Programme

Resilience Academy 6-Week Programme

The Resilience Academy 6-Week Programme is currently on hold due to restrictions on visiting schools.

The programme is limited to 30 students per class. It is facilitated by two Resilience Academy Facilitators in the classroom.

In the initial session students are given a pre-intervention resilience questionnaire. The students are then guided through a variety of topics. Students initially learn coping techniques based on Cognitive Behaviour Therapy principles, for example; evaluating unhelpful thinking styles. After this session they are then asked to choose from a menu (which is confidential) of topics.

The topics are:

The students choose four of these. This choice enables students to pick topics that may be relevant to their current experiences in a confidential way. The top four selected by the class are then delivered for four weeks.

The Resilience Academy then concludes with a closing session. Students are prompted with a review of content and are encouraged to ask any questions they may have. Students are also signposted to helpful services for all topics covered. Post intervention questionnaires are then given to students.

Enrol Your School

The Booking / Expression of Interest form is an application for a Resilience Academy programme or course in 2021/2022. If you are interested, please complete the Booking form.

The School consent form must be completed by the school Principal before the Resilience Academy can deliver a programme or course to your school.

Amber Flag

Find out how your school can achieve Pieta’s Amber Flag

Amber Flag Initiative
Teacher feedback: Everyone is singing its praise - thank you for tailoring it during such a difficult year
Teacher feedback: Going very well - workbooks are great!
Teacher feedback: We felt very supported by Pieta and were happy with the support given to schools.
Teacher feedback: Both the teacher facilitation session and all of the materials were excellent.
Teacher feedback: Very well constructed. We found the session with teachers very helpful.
Student feedback: The course helped me with resilience a lot.
Student feedback: It was nice to have some reassurance from outside my family. Really enjoyed the course so thank you.
Student feedback: I think this is a good way to let teens know they’re not alone.
Student feedback: Very informative and insightful and I found the activities very helpful.

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