Those of us who own pets know they make us happy!
Interacting with animals has been shown to:
- increase self-esteem
- increase verbal communication
- develop social skills
- increase willingness to join in activities
- improve interactions with others
- reduce anxiety
- help develop empathic and nurturing skills
Following recent media reports linked to World Mental Health Day highlighting the rise in child mental health issues in schools, the positive effect of interaction with animals appears to be a way forward in helping to support children with mental health issues such as anxiety disorders, depression, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Although there tends to be no single cause for mental illness in children, the sooner mental health issues are recognised and addressed, the better chance a child will have of recovery, moving forward to take full advantage of their schooling and of life in general.
‘Promoting positive mental health in your workplace can therefore be hugely beneficial. Staff with good mental health are more likely to perform well, have good attendance levels and be engaged in their work.’
The Acas framework for positive mental health at work – July 2018
If you feel that Animals in Hands can support the work undertaken in your school, to help children experiencing these issues, through interaction with any of our animals, then please feel free to contact either James or Mo. If you are interested in finding out more about our services, we will be more than happy to give you a call to go over what we can offer in more detail.
Some schools have also used Animals in Hands to promote Community Cohesion by inviting into school the local playgroup, Nursery or Senior Citizens to share the experience of a visit by Animals in Hands.
Our facilitators can also link the animals to regions and countries other than the UK and explain why those countries are different from the UK.