At MeeTwo Education we are committed to undertaking research to understand the impact of the MeeTwo service and to learn more about early stage adolescent anxiety. If you would like to learn more or take part in our research please contact us.
Does a lack of access to advice and support affect wellbeing?
We are currently working with our partner schools to further understand the connection between wellbeing and the ease of access to advice and support.
In 2016 we conducted some preliminary research on this topic. You can read the full report here.
Peer Support: A review of existing research and how MeeTwo can supplement existing schemes.
Peer support schemes use students themselves to help others learn and develop emotionally, socially or academically. There is a growing body of empirical evidence supporting the case for peer support initiatives. Peer support models can help young people to deal with challenges and benefit both the mentor and mentee. Over a third of all schools in England have some form of peer mentoring or peer support provision. However, the current models rely on face-to-face contact and it has been shown to be difficult to replicate high quality peer initiatives nation-wide. The need to improve the quality of support for children remains strong. Research carried out by MeeTwo Education indicates that 60% of children say that they don’t have access to the support and advice that they need. The MeeTwo model builds on existing success but offers a standardised and measurable national service providing moderated peer support and expert help for all children aged 13-18. Read the full review here.
Why do young people need MeeTwo?
Adolescence is a time of rapid physical, mental and social change. Some kids cope well, but when asked, most young people report having worries. Teenagers struggle to ask questions, or express anxieties, particularly about issues to do with their bodies, their relationships, or their sexual experiences. Sex and relationships education (SRE) is not statutory and Ofsted describe current provision as “patchy.” A national study suggests 75 % of teens rate their SRE as very bad, bad, or OK (Sex Education Forum 2013). Even if SRE provision was more effective, talking to teachers or parents can feel awkward and fear of humiliation makes it difficult for young people to be honest with each other.
Although schools are good at pinpointing children who are in extreme distress, it is difficult for them to identify individuals who might be internalising personal problems. Because anxiety is a significant barrier to learning and development, teenagers would benefit from a resource that could provide tailored individual support. Existing platforms which allow young people to share information are not moderated, nor are they anonymous, so teenagers can’t safely exchange peer advice or compare their experiences in order to develop a more accurate understanding of what is, or is not, normal or age appropriate. Many on and offline services already deliver expert information, but a moderated peer advice model would empower young people to articulate both problems and solutions.