Belfast Policing and Community Safety Partnership Pilot Report, Ligoniel, Belfast, 2018.

"The District Policing and Community Safety Partnership (DPCSP) sees the Take Five Resilience Project as an excellent example of early intervention which builds skills in young people, through the school setting, which ultimately benefit the wider community and society in general."
Richard McLernon, Safer City Coordinator: North Belfast District Policing and Community Safety Partnership, Belfast City Council

Ligoniel Primary Schools sits overlooking the city of Belfast, Ireland and has a total of 180 pupils - this report documents the in-depth and detailed evaluation of the tailored whole school resilience building project at Ligoniel Primary School.

Take Five in Belfast Report Jan 2018 Cover.jpg

Belfast Policing and Community Safety Partnership Pilot Report, Ligoniel, Belfast, 2018.

Ligoniel Primary Schools sits overlooking the city of Belfast, Ireland and has a total of 180 pupils - this report documents the in-depth and detailed evaluation of the tailored whole school resilience building project that Ligoniel Primary School undertook during 2017, through high-quality quantitative and qualitative data – including analysis of impact on children who live lives filled with great intergenerational challenge.

The project was funded by the North Belfast District Policing and Community Partnership (DPCSP) as part of a wider programme of work to support emotional resilience and community cohesion, with the aim of enhancing community safety in North Belfast.

The report states that the DPCSP see the ‘Take Five’ Resilience Project as an excellent example of early intervention which builds skills in young people, throughout the school setting, which ultimately benefit the wider community and society in general.

The data and the graphs

Examples of quantitative impact from a 5-week impact study Please note – LPPSS means Low Pre-Practice Self-Score. Basically, these are the children who are struggling the most at the point of measurement.

Impact on ability to concentrate

  • On average, across all weeks, all Year 3 students, reported a 15% increase in ability to concentrate pre-post practice
  • On average, across all weeks, Year 3 LPPSS students, reported a 23.3% increase in concentration pre-post practice

Reduction in stress in the body

  • On average, across all weeks, all Years 3 students, reported a 22.7% reduction in stress in the body pre-post practice
  • On average, across all weeks, LPPSS students, reported a 34.2% reduction in stress in the body pre-post practice

Feeling Positive about themselves

  • On average, across all weeks, all Year 6 students, reported a 6.7% increase in feeling positive about themselves, pre-post practice
  • On average, across all weeks, Year 6 LPPSS students, reported a 10% increase in feeling positive about themselves, pre-post practice

The films and quantitative data

The report is also host to an impressive 19 short films which set out to share the array of voices in reflection of the many people who are ultimately involved in a project when a whole school intervention, such as this is undertaken. The films hear from the amazing children, the Principal, teachers, parents, funders and the two Health and Wellbeing Workers whom helped bring ‘Take Five’ to Belfast.

The films find that children enjoy the practices and have developed strength and resilience; learning to be calmer and help them to get rid of stress in times of need. While the adults notice the growth in self awareness of the children and celebrate this growing awareness. Many references are made to the sustainability of the project and how the project has become self-sustaining successfully.

Hidden Observations

Within the data of the report lie a number of hidden observations, which may be overlooked and Helen Whitney, Co-founder of Each Amazing breath summarises that:

  • There were positive shifts in concentration, calmness, and a positive attitude towards self and life in general – showing that ‘Take Five’ helps children achieve academically and helps to close educational gaps.
  • The data across all year groups, and all questions, also indicates that the cohorts of children who had Low Pre-Practice Self-Scores (LPPSS) made proportionally greater gains post practice, than the whole co-hort – meaning the most vulnerable children are most positively affected by ‘Take Five’.
  • The report also finds a correlation between less stress in the body, increased feelings of calm, and increased ability to concentrate.
  • Small, but consistent daily shifts help embed a growing sense of internal success.

Each Amazing Breath acknowledge that resilience building is often about noticing small, sometimes very small, shifts and even these small shifts are worth celebrating and part of the growing sense of internal success!

In addition to the qualitative and quantitative feedback the report also shares:

  • Back ground into ‘Take Five’ and the delivery team
  • Information on Ligoniel Primary school including celebration news from their launch involving the Lord Mayor of Belfast and Councillor Nuala Mcallister and a glimpse of the children’s practice cards
  • Measuring resilience and evaluation methodology, including pre-post practice shifts and LPPSS
  • Conclusion and Gratitude.

Overall this celebratory report showcases the - growing sense of personal resilience these children are developing and the growing body of evidence that ‘Take Five’ practices and Each Amazing Breath’s whole school resilience building model is successful at helping children become more resilient and helps improve mental and emotional wellness.

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