Post 8 – Children and bad news

(Image copyright BBC News)

Just a short and simple post following the tragic event in Manchester earlier this week.

Yet again our emergency services, especially the NHS have done an amazing and fantastic job in their response. As this is a mental health awareness blog, then I thought I would highlight the support to the emergency and medical teams, victims and their families by the mental health charities.

Mind and The Samaritans have been present in Manchester , around the town and at the vigils providing counselling and support. All the charities operate open lines for anyone who wishes to call. I think it’s worth highlighting that a lot of the people offering support are trained volunteers, alongside professionals from the charities, giving their time to listen and help people handle emotional impact.

Thes charities provide these services all year round to anyone feeling upset or overwhelmed , whether from a personal tragedy or public tragedy. I think that is simply amazing.

A lot of focus was placed on how you could talk and share this type of news to children. The mental health charities posted guidance and advice, through their own websites or via media outlets. Personally I thought that the best version was from the BBC Newsround programme and it’s as applicable to us adults as much as children. In summary,

  • share your worries
  • it’s normal to be upset
  • try and get balance with things that make you happy
  • such terrible events are rare

Newsround ended the guidance really well :

“The most important thing is that if you are feeling upset, don’t keep what’s troubling you about the news to yourself. Talking to an adult about what in the news is worrying you can help you to understand what is upsetting you, and help those feelings of sadness, anger or confusion to go away.”

The full page is available form here (

Have a peaceful weekend, Chris.


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