Promoting Mental wellbeing in VET Erasmus Project

General information for the Promoting Mental wellbeing in VET Erasmus Project

Promoting Mental wellbeing in VET Erasmus Project
July 7, 2020 12:00 am

Project Title

Promoting Mental wellbeing in VET

Project Key Action

This project related with these key action: Cooperation for innovation and the exchange of good practices

Project Action Type

This project related with this action type : Strategic Partnerships for vocational education and training

Project Call Year

This project’s Call Year is 2014

Project Topics

This project is related with these Project Topics: Early School Leaving / combating failure in education; Health and wellbeing; International cooperation, international relations, development cooperation

Project Summary

Learning mental health knowledge and skills will be an essential component of VET in the future since the number of students with mental health challenges is increasing rapidly. Cedefop (2016) has identified students with multiple disadvantage, possibly facing health and psycho-social issues one of the major groups in danger of drop-out. However, vocational education and training in Europe can have a positive effect on mental well-being. Promoting Mental well-being in VET was a Strategic Partnership project which was based on developing pedagogical innovation and the exchange of good practice in mental health promotion, focusing on teachers, tutors, directors and students in VET. In addition the target group included in-company trainers.

The priorities and objectives of the project were:
a) Reinforcing and establishing a pro-active and preventive view to the concept of mental well-being
b) Developing material promoting mental health
c) Piloting and testing new material
d) Translation of mental health promotion in VET through websites
e) Planning the training program for the development of competence in mental health promotion in colleges and internship companies

The project consortium consisted of four VET colleges in Finland, Spain, Denmark and the Netherlands, one higher education college in Lithuania, one expert association focusing in the promotion mental health and well-being issues in Finland and one umbrella organisation for VET in Belgium in order to ensure proper dissemination of the project outcomes.
The project activities were carried out according to the project plan. The materials, tools and the training programme were structured around five themes:
1) mental well-being as a resource,
2) self-knowledge,
3) emotions and interaction,
4) coping skills and
5) the learning community.

The project consortium piloted and evaluated the new material and the training courses. Meetings focused on training the new methods to other participants and sharing the existing best practices in partner organizations. The theoretical background of each new theme was introduced by a short lecture and a review on the topic. After the theory session the theme and best practices were practiced through functional activities. The choice of the best practices shared were always agreed upon during the previous meeting. The partners translated practices and introduced them in the meetings. There were 3-4 best practices presented at each meeting. The practices were introduced in a functional way by using learning-by-doing methods in order to participants to get idea how they work. After the meeting each presented practice was evaluated. Each organization also piloted the shared practices with their students or staff members. After each pilot, practices were evaluated by the participants (students, staff). Evaluation data was collected from the people who used the material and attended the training programme. The evaluation report describes the findings of the evaluation. One of the key components in the project was to share good practice and learn from each other – how mental well-being and mental health issues were being dealt in VET and how the issue could be further promoted in VET.

The teaching staff in all the participating VET colleges were aware of the project through internal dissemination. The awareness of the importance of mental well-being in connection with study success increased. The gained skills in mental well-being promotion can be used in teaching and guidance work in classrooms and distance education, work mentoring and other cooperation. The students have more understanding on their own mental capacity and how to promote it. Unfortunately the project was unable to get the in-company trainers to participate the training sessions. However, the trained teaching staff that is involved in companies through students’ on-the-job learning periods, is able to promote the ideas of mental well-being through their discussions and visits in the work places.

All the produced tools and materials are freely available in the project blog The project highlights the importance of the approach that includes everyone to support students’ mental well-being. The “whole college” approach provides a simple, low cost way of promoting mental health.

EU Grant (Eur)

Funding of the project from EU: 173914 Eur

Project Coordinator

Invalidisäätiö & Country: FI

Project Partners

  • Tietgen
  • ROC Da Vinci College