Beyond the Headlines: Childhood and Wellbeing in a Changing World

Monday 20 May, 6 – 7.30pm | Online

Building on the momentum of Mental Health Awareness Week 2024, this online Coram Society event will delve into mental health research insights and tackle the crucial question: what should we do?

Young people around the world are said to be facing a dramatic decline in their physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing. New technologies, changes in social norms, and paradigm-shifting events are restructuring childhood with uncertain but concerning consequences.

Research from diverse fields is building a compelling case: children and young people are innovators and pioneers in this changing world, but need urgent support from schools, families, communities, and governments to navigate it with safety, agency and awareness.

We will be drawing on the expertise of individuals from within and outside Coram to consider key drivers of youth wellbeing including sleep, play, relationships, movement, and technology. In the context of passionate discussions among those with an interest in childhood and young people, we hope to centre a nuanced, productive, and critical lens that offers constructive routes forward.

We are pleased to be joined by the following speakers:

  • Harriet Gill – Harriet is the Managing Director of Education and Wellbeing for Coram and is responsible for Coram Life Education and Coram Beanstalk’s vision for children and young people to develop social and emotional skills for the future. She has been a leader within children and young people’s charities for 30 years.
  • Tim Gill – Tim is an independent scholar, writer and consultant on childhood, and a global advocate for children’s play and mobility. He is the author of Urban Playground: How child-friendly urban planning and design can save cities and No Fear: Growing up in a risk averse society.
  • Laura Wyatt Smith – Laura is a certified coach, consultant, facilitator and speaker, currently undertaking a Churchill Fellowship investigating the impact of smartphones on young people’s wellbeing. In pursuit of these insights, she has recently spent time in Silicon Valley meeting educators, parents and others in the world of technology.

Please note that the event will be recorded.


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