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The Prince of Wales visits the West Midlands

The Prince of Wales visited the West Midlands to learn about initiatives across the region that are supporting people’s mental health and wellbeing.

His Royal Highness started the day at St Michael’s Church of England High School in Sandwell, learning about the award-winning, student-led initiatives available to pupils to support their mental health. 

The Prince of Wales was initially invited to visit the school in a letter sent by twelve-year-old student Freddie Hadley last October. Whilst unable to visit at the time, His Royal Highness replied to the letter with a message on X on World Mental Health Day, and today surprised Freddie and his fellow students, commending them on their work to tackle mental health challenges faced by pupils.

St Michael’s employs a “whole school” approach to mental health and wellbeing, including through pupils’ group ‘Student Voice’, which was launched in 2012 and consists of up to 100 students who work together on initiatives ranging from fundraising to working with elderly members of the community. 

His Royal Highness then travelled to Woodgate Valley Urban Farm, which is dedicated to supporting children and young people struggling to access education, and those experiencing mental health challenges.

The Prince of Wales met staff and volunteers on the six-acre site - which includes the farm, woodlands and orchards - and heard more about therapeutic programmes for children including the upkeep of a variety of animals living at Woodgate Valley.

On his final stop, in Aston, His Royal Highness officially opened a new employment skills training and community outreach centre for Betel UK, a charity for people affected by homelessness and addiction. 

In 2018, The Prince and Princess of Wales visited one of Betel’s cafes inside Coventry Cathedral. Today, at the new, one-of-a-kind facility called Anchor Point, The Prince of Wales heard from those who have been supported by Betel with their journey to recovery and employment, as well as touring the six social enterprises including a café, theatre and beauty salon that are housed within the centre and provide work and training to those overcoming drug and alcohol addiction. 

Channel website: https://www.royal.uk/

Original article link: https://www.royal.uk/news-and-activity/2024-04-26/the-prince-of-wales-visits-the-west-midlands

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