Black dog returns to Barking school to raise mental health awareness
PUBLISHED: 17:00 08 July 2019
A black dog is standing vigil in a Barking secondary school in an effort to get pupils talking about mental health.
Elvis the dog returned to Eastbury Community School after a UK tour of public spaces, schools and universities. He has been at Eastbury since 2017.
Mental health charity Sane puts sculptures of black dogs around the country to raise the profile of mental health.
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The black dog is an age-old metaphor for depression seen in mythology and folklore.
"I am extremely proud of all of our students and staff who have done so much to increase understanding and support young people who are overcoming mental health issues," said David Dickson, executive head at the school.
"Over one in ten children experience mental health issues. If we can address these early, we have a better chance of providing effective interventions."
Councillor Evelyn Carpenter, lead for educational attainment and school improvement, said: "We're proud that our schools are playing their part in helping address stigma that surrounds discussing mental health issues, because the wider impact goes beyond just what happens inside the [school] gates."