Samaritans: ‘Put wellbeing ahead of exam grades’

Mental Health Week - volunteers with Ballymena Samaritans are always available to listen and offer support.
Mental Health Week - volunteers with Ballymena Samaritans are always available to listen and offer support.

Samaritans has issued a timely appeal for people to put wellbeing ahead of grades this exam season.

By keeping results in perspective, it says young people are more likely to do themselves justice.

The call echoes the theme of this week’s Mental Health Awareness Week, which is focusing on coping with stress.

Samaritans volunteer, Jacquie, who is also the director of Ballymena branch, said: “Learning to manage your emotions – build resilience, develop communication skills and positive ways to cope with difficulties - is as important as learning to read and write.

“Naturally, every parent, teacher and employer puts a value on good grades, and students put themselves under pressure to achieve. We would urge anyone involved in exams and supporting young people with their studies, to ensure students look after their emotional health. That way they are likely to cope better with the stress of exams, and achieve better too.”

The charity has a programme of teaching resources for teachers, called Developing Emotional Awareness and Listening (DEAL). It also promotes wellbeing in the workplace and has a set of resources for businesses, entitled Wellbeing In The City.

Ballymena Samaritans has a strong outreach team, going out to schools, clubs and organisations.

The branch can be contacted on 028 2564 4846 between 7.30pm and 10.00pm or e-mail ballymenasamsoffice@gmail.com