Healthwatch Northamptonshire (HWN) was commissioned to engage with CYP to inform the objectives of the The Northamptonshire Children and Young People’s Future in Mind Local Transformation Plan for Emotional Wellbeing and Mental Health. The starting point was to establish the views and awareness of CYP across the county about eating disorders.
Young Healthwatch Northamptonshire (YHW) carried out a survey asking CYP aged 9 to 24 across the county about, their knowledge and awareness about eating disorders, if they had one themselves or knew someone who did and if they knew where to go for help and which wellbeing services they were aware of.
The survey was sent to all schools in Northamptonshire and to partner organisations to include in their newsletters, was shared in HWN’s newsletter, website and social media. 2,017 responses (5 times the expected response) were received in total – 1,966 surveys from three colleges and seven schools, as well as from various youth groups in Northamptonshire.
In addition, YHW set up a focus group with 20 young people within the LGBTQ community to gain their views on the same subject.
Using the findings from the survey and focus group, HWN was able to make key recommendations concerning building awareness of the issue, improving information about it and how to engage better with the various groups likely to experience it.