Relaxation Sessions Hosted For Children by Health Trust

22nd May 2023

The Fostering and Adoption Service in the South Eastern Health & Social Care Trust has partnered with Relax Kids Belfast to host sessions for adopted children and families living across the Trust area, to support their mental, emotional health and wellbeing.

The programme focuses on introducing and reinforcing a range of tools and techniques to help calm both their minds and bodies; to learn how to self-regulate whilst building upon their self-esteem and confidence, in a fun and supportive environment. The techniques include meditation, mindfulness and relaxation to try and make the children and their families feel happier and emotionally healthier.

A parent of a child who attended the sessions said, “The lady that hosted the sessions was lovely and had a very calming approach, which worked really well for my child. I really feel he has learnt something from it. Thank you for the opportunity to allow us to take part.”

Another parent who benefitted from the sessions commented, “My child definitely was able to learn some helpful strategies that we have been using over the past few weeks.”

Head of Service, Fostering and Adoption, Nuala Hanna added, “This is a fantastic resource that the South Eastern Trust is delighted to deliver to our adopted children and families. The post adoption service works closely with our adoptive families to identify concerns in relation to mental health and Relax Kids Belfast has greatly assisted in providing the children and parents with techniques and strategies to help them.”

Sinead York who hosts the sessions from Relax Kids Belfast said, “It was a pleasure to work with the children from Adoption Services, giving them lots of beneficial and practical tools to help with transitions, to improve their mental health, emotional regulation, feel happy, relaxed and confident.  By the use of  movement, play, yoga, breathing exercises, affirmations, mindfulness, and visualisations the children were able to find inner peace and calm, you could really see them develop these skills over the course of the three sessions.

“It was also lovely to seem them build relationships with each other and for the parents to do the same. Several children took the time to tell me how they used their new skills at bedtime, in school or when they were feeling sad, angry or worried.  The parents/carers were also given a Relax Kids pack which included lots of information on what we covered during the sessions, this meant they were able to encourage the children to practice at home, which seemed to really work well.”