September 2018

Families First News

Difference we're making

The Children’s Wellbeing Team attend Crucial Crew across Hertfordshire


The Children’s Wellbeing Team attend Crucial Crew across Hertfordshire


Crucial Crew runs across most of Hertfordshire educating approximately 10,000 Year 6 pupils each year and has been running for around 26 years in some areas. The scheme aims to provide vital safety messages and life skills to support these children into their next stage if life – Independence.

The schemes are organised by Alex Lang who voluntarily runs the Crucial Crew Charity which is responsible for six schemes and there are three other schemes are run by ASPECTS, in Bishops Stortford, and the District councils in St Albans and Welwyn Hatfield. The professionals that take part in these events are volunteers who give up their free time or teams, like the CWP’s, Firemen, NHS, & Police who are able to schedule their time for this vital education in to their existing roles.   Without funding, volunteers and professional agencies this scheme simply would not exist and it gets harder to achieve every year. 

CWP involvement

As we know, emotional wellbeing is one of the most talked about issues and as CWP’s a large part of our role is to provide Psycho-Education to help combat this growing issue.

In May the CWP’s attended Bishops Stortford Crucial Crew, organised by ASPECTS, for the first time as a pilot exercise with a view to promoting awareness around Anxiety in Children and Young people. We spent the week talking to 648 year 6 pupils talking about What Anxiety is, how it affects our bodies and looking at ways we can get help and practicing relaxation exercises.  

Bishops Stortford was a success and the feedback we received was positive so we got in touch with Alex Lang and made plans to attend the North Herts Crucial Crew event in July. There were 900 year 6 pupils who came through during those two weeks and once again the feedback was very positive.

As part of the events we have also increased awareness of Kooth .com, #Just Talk and - almost 100% of pupils were unaware of these links!

Feedback and effectiveness

In order to capture how effective the CWP’’s message is we asked every pupil the same questions and although we have feedback still coming in, the feedback is showing us that Yes, we are getting the message out there!

Do you know what Anxiety is? Before (62%) After (96%) That’s a 34% increase

Do you know what Fight or Flight means? Before (22%) After (89%) That’s a 67% increase

Do you know how your body reacts when you get scared or nervous? Before (79%) After (96%) That’s 17% increase

Do you know where you can get help if you need it? Before (88%) After (97%) That’s a 9% increase

Did you enjoy the workshop? 86% said YES!

The CWP’s have enjoyed spending their time on Crucial Crew and we know it has been invaluable to us as a team to spread the message that Anxiety is ok; it’s normal and absolutely manageable. It’s been a great opportunity for networking and letting the schools know that there is support our there for all Hertfordshire Pupils.

The future for CWP’s and Crucial Crew

The CWP’s are now planning to attend the Stevenage, Hemel Hempstead & Broxbourne Crucial Crews which are running up until Christmas, and hopefully, we will attend future Crucial Crews in 2019 as well.

All photos are from Bishops Stortford Crucial Crew – photographic consent for pupils obtained by ASPECTS.




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