The Prime Minister has recognised teaching assistant and author, Helen Cousin, with the Points of Light Award. Helen’s award coincided with Time to Talk Day on 6th February, the national day encouraging conversations and changed behaviour and attitudes about mental health.
Helen, from Misterton, founded Help Me, I’m Fine, which provides training courses in primary schools to help teachers identify children who are unhappy, worried, or suicidal after her 16-year-old daughter, Maisie, took her own life in 2017.
In a personal letter to Helen, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “I know you do this with no thought of praise or reward, but allow me to offer my own recognition of your strength after losing your daughter, Maisie, and how through Help Me, I’m Fine, you are supporting the emotional health of children in primary schools.”
Helen said: “It is an honour to be chosen for the Points of Light award. After losing my beautiful 16-year-old daughter, Maisie, to suicide in 2017, our lives were turned upside-down. Thanks to the support of my family, friends and our amazing community, I have been able to turn our tragedy into something that will hopefully encourage others to speak out about their mental health.
“In just over two years, Help Me, I’m Fine has raised £35,000 to support schools with THRIVE training, giving our children the tools they need to self-regulate and get through life’s difficult transitions.”
Helen has also published a book, The Knot, to help primary school children understand how to cope with their feelings, with all profits going back into the charity. It is a beautifully illustrated book, that explains in light-hearted rhyme how worry knots can be dispelled, how even teachers get worry knots and how they cope with them.