Headstart Hull

big lot

Hull is one of only 12 areas in England to received funding from the Big Lottery Fund to develop a local ‘HeadStart’ project. The pilot aims to help young people aged between 10 and 14 cope with the pressures of modern life.

A recent national study showed almost half of young people aged 10 to 14 have suffered sleepless nights due to stress and anxiety; HeadStart aims to address this and design new services to help those in need.

HeadStart Hull forms just part of this Big Lottery Fund's £25 million HeadStart project, aimed at improving the mental health and resilience of children aged 10-14.

The project is currently still in the pilot stage, and will run until July 2016. Currently, there are 13 schools taking part, with universal and targeted interventions in place.

We are extremely proud of the progress made to date and we have some really exciting projects starting shortly will engage young people and increase resilience.

HeadStart Hull End of Year review

Please click here to read the end of year one review.



The social media campaign #HeadStartHull week ran from Monday 26 January 2015 - Sunday 1 February 2015. The campaign aimed to provide young people with trusted information on internet safety whilst highlighting the possible effects of playing unsuitable age rated video games. Parents and carers also benefited from #HeadStartHull week as jargon-busting guides have been shared, along with information on where parents and young people can go for help if they’re worried about online activity or the content of video games.  Please follow HeadStart @HullHeadStart

Click here to find out more about the campaign. 

Latest HeadStart News

Click here to view trusted websites and useful links.


Some of the projects being delivered as part of HeadStart Hull include:

The Care Monkeys

A digital app, The Care Monkeys, was devised and designed by five girls working in conjunction with the Cornerhouse Project and as part of Lifestyle. 
The app aims to provide young people with advice and support on common issues, such as bullying, exploitation and abuse, in a safe digital environment. Containing a host of information, including useful articles, top tips, and videos, young people are able to download the app and easily access the information and help which they need. 
Designed specifically with those in vulnerable situations in mind, the app also offers the ‘Hide this App’ feature – allowing the user to hide the app and it disappear instantly from the screen.

The app has featured locally in the media, including this article on the Hull Daily Mail, with an official launch on BBC Radio Humberside at the end of anti-bullying week in November 2014.

The app is currently being promoted within schools. 

Find out more about the app here.

HeadStart Hull YouTube Channel

As part of the innovative, digital work being undertaken for HeadStart Hull a YouTube channel has been developed ready to be shared across social media and linked with The Care Monkeys app. 
HeadStart Hull have developed a number of short films with young people in Hull which cover a range of topics such as bullying and fitting in.

The films have acted as a platform for discussing with the young people involved issues that may affect them and what potential solutions can be found. The work has allowed team work, creative thinking and learning of new skills. But also provided a safe place to talk openly, reduce stigma and build confidence.

The films will be featured on the HeadStart YouTube Channel, which you can find here.

Youth Mental Health First Aid Training

Youth Mental Health First Aid Training has been offered to teachers and support staff initially in the 13 pilot schools. A number of staff have already undertaken the training with positive feedback shared, further training dates have been planned with more staff already booked on to this. Schools will also be assisted in gaining the Quality Mark as part of this initiative.


Social Mediation and Self-Help, or SMASH for short, take referrals from schools to work with groups of young people on a restorative and peer to peer support basis. The programme started during the first school term this year in 5 of the HeadStart pilot primary schools and 2 of the HeadStart pilot secondary schools.
Feedback from the schools and families has been extremely positive and the young people’s confidence and self- esteem improving.