For #ChildrensMentalHealthweek lets talk about Romani and Traveller children's well-being

7 February 2020
Two girls sat on a bench eating lunch and one girl stood behind looking mean at one of the girls

We are proud to be supporting #ChildrensMentalHealthWeek2020 raising awareness about the importance of children and young peoples mental health. Join us by sharing this story to help shine a light on some of the issues that can impact on Romani and Traveller #ChildrensMentalHealth

This years #ChildrensMentalHealthWeek theme is Find your Brave. Bravery comes in all shapes and sizes and is different for everyone. For Romani  and Traveller young people this can sometimes mean feeling brave enough to talk about ethnicity and heritage in school. 

Young people often experience racist sentiment in the media and elsewhere. In fact the Children’s Society found that 63% of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller children had been bullied verbally or physically while in school because of their ethnicity. This coupled with lack of positive representation of Gypsy, Roma and Travellers long-standing history, language and culture in many schools can lead to inaccurate stereotypes being formed and many young people feeling like they have to hide their identity. This undoubtedly impacts on children's self - esteem and confidence.

 'Being Me' is a short film based on young peoples real life experiences that explore these issues from their own perspectives.

Being Me was created as part of the  'It’s Kushti to Rokker' project, a campaign aimed at encouraging us all to be more open about our mental health and to start conversations with those who might need our support. You can watch the full series of 'Its Kushti to Rokker' films, download our information pack for parents and families and our toolkit for practitioners here: 

If your a teacher and want to help your Gypsy Roma or Traveller students find their brave and feel valued and included why not check out these resources we recommend for #ChildrensMentalHealthWeek2020 that can be enjoyed by ALL students! Or If your reading this and your a parent why not share some of these resources with your child's school? 

Roads from the Past

“It’s so complicated. What are we supposed to call you? Where do you come from? What have you got to do with each other? I’m confused! ‘Roads from the Past’ is a response to these questions. It’s a short- animated film about the history of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller people in Britain, from ancient times up to the present day. This resource is useful for anyone but especially for teachers or other people working with children. 

Children's Books by Richard O'Neil 

Richard O'Neil has published a range of children's book, which represent Romani history and heritage. Find out more here: The award winning Author Richard also tells his original stories in nurseries, primary and secondary schools, libraries, museums, theatres, conferences, universities and the workplace. His stories are of amazing characters, adventure, every day life, family and community, success and enterprise.  Beautifully and skill fully crafted to create a fantastic blend of old, new, and totally original stories and performances, reflecting and celebrating, old and current British culture, to educate, inspire, empower and entertain. 

Crystals Vardo 

Crystal’s Vardo is the extraordinary story of a young girl’s journey through Romani history in a quest to piece together the shards of her ancestry. Interwoven with music, humour and storytelling, this is a story that will both shock and delight.Crystal's Vardo is an interactive play that aims to raise awareness of Gypsy and Traveller issues and in turn help tackle the problems of racist bullying in schools and elsewhere. The play is suitable for schools, theatres and training events. For more information, please visit the Crystal’s Vardo page

Gypsy, Roma and Traveller History Month Resource

There are activity sheets with facts about Gypsy Roma and Travellers and their history to help bring Gypsy, Roma Traveller history month into the classroom for all to enjoy. The aim of the resources is to help people begin to understand the way of life of Gypsy, Roma and Travellers and the purpose of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller History Month. You can download your free copy here: https://www.twinkl. assembly-pack 

Promoting Equality and Tackling Racism: A Tool for Teachers and Practitioners

This resource is designed to be an informative and practical tool to help those working with Gypsy, Roma and Traveller young people
in the Welsh school system. static/574451fe37013bd0515647ac/t/59102277ff7c502e783836 3e/1502876574094/GRT+Toolkit+-+Promoting+Equality+and+Tackling +Racism.pdf 

Out of Site

This education pack has been created by Show Racism the Red Card and is aimed at tackling racism towards Gypsy, Roma and Travellers. t/5da6f0db32e76a5df11ea1f3/1571221735047/ Out+of+Site+Education+Pack.pdf

A Gypsy/Traveller Perspective on History, Culture and Traditions of the Community in Scotland

To be used by schools to help both teachers and pupils better understand the heritage, history and positive contributions to
society of Scotland’s Gypsy and Traveller people, and to tackle the discrimination and prejudice that these communities often face. http://

Travellers’ Times

The Travellers’ Times bi-annually magazine that brings you the latest news, features & information for Gypsy, Roma and Traveller people by Gypsy, Roma and Traveller people. The website is designed to be used by Gypsy,
Roma & Traveller communities and non-Travellers alike. Contact: to add your school or organisation to the mailing list to receive free copies of the magazine.


YTT News/Lisa Smith