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 0207 328 0918

Adolescence Now: Understanding & Supporting Today's Adolescent

Date published: 26.06.2024

On Saturday, June 22nd, the Brent Centre for Young People and Westminster School co-hosted an adolescent mental health conference titled ‘Adolescence Now: Understanding & Supporting Today’s Adolescent.’

The event took place on the enchanting grounds of Westminster School, located just a stone’s throw from Parliament. This setting helped set the tone for the day as one where conversations about how to best support young people could evoke real change. Throughout the day, over 150 in-person and online attendees delved into meaningful discussions about the diverse range of challenges faced by today's young people and how professionals can best support them.

To kickstart the day, following the opening address, we heard from three Westminster School pupils as they delivered presentations on topics and issues they deemed both personally and societally important, including discussions around equality, mental health, and wellbeing. Listening to these young people helped to centre a key theme for the day: listening to and understanding young people.

Over the course of the day, we heard from distinguished speakers on a diverse range of topics related to adolescent mental health. Following each presentation, there was strong engagement from the audience, which opened up the dialogue and allowed for practical discussions about working with young people. The presentations were as follows:

Dr. Anthony Ogoe, Child & Adolescent Psychotherapist – The Process of Racialisation and the Adolescent Mind: Undoing the Mask of Piety.

Dr. Sara Flanders, Psychoanalyst, Brent Centre for Young People – The Virtual World and the Gendered Body.

Dr. Felicity Tyson, Child & Adolescent Psychotherapist, Brent Centre for Young People & Shanice Richards, Dramatherapist, Respond – Now You See Me, Now You Don't: Supporting Adolescent Development in Psychotherapy with Young People with Autism and Learning Difficulties.

Dr. Andrew Browne, Child & Adolescent Psychotherapist, Westminster School & Fiona Henderson, Child & Adolescent Psychotherapist, Westminster School – Meeting the Mental Health Needs of Adolescents Today: The Nature and Significance of the Assessment for Psychotherapy.

The conference closed with a panel discussion, giving presenters and attendees the opportunity to reflect on the day, discuss topics in further detail, and offer food for thought to take away from the event. During the panel, we heard questions submitted by the Brent Centre Youth Panel, which once again helped to return the focus to the experiences of young people. The panel session sparked intriguing debates on a variety of issues as we heard from multiple perspectives from both panellists and the audience alike.