Hello – my name is Lisa Campbell and I am so very excited to introduce you to Wonderful Me!!!!
Wonderful Me! is all about equipping and enabling churches to journey well with children and families in their communities through training and support in relational practice and an inclusive, trauma informed approach to children’s ministry.
I love this verse from Isaiah 58:12 which says:
Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins and will raise up the age-old foundations; you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls, Restorer of Streets with Dwellings.
… and repair and restoration in the lives of our children and young people is so needed right now. According to the 2021 NHS survey on the Mental Health of children and young people in England, 1 in 6 children aged 5 – 16 are identified as having a probable mental health condition – that is 5 in every classroom. We are living in the middle of a mental health crisis.
I believe that, as the church, we are called to be repairers of broken walls and restorers of communities … to create safe spaces that enable every child to feel welcomed, to be included and to flourish in the knowledge that they are each wonderfully made by a loving God.
But to do this well, we need to be informed!
Over the past 20 years or so there has been some significant research and discoveries made in the area of neuroscience and brain development – research that has transformed our understanding of child development, of behaviour, of emotional well being and mental health and has shaped our strategies, responses and approaches.
That has largely been thanks to new technology which began to emerge in the 1990s, such as MRI scans which meant we could actually see how the brain develops, and see the physical affect that experiences such as trauma have on our brains. And, as a result, our knowledge of the brain and how it develops has grown exponentially over the past couple of decades. But, in my experience, the incredible learning that has taken place in the past 20 years or so hasn’t always filtered through to the people who would most benefit from it – those who are working grass roots, day in day out with children!!
Thankfully, it has started to creep in to the world of education and some schools are beginning to explore how that knowledge might shape their practice but I guess that what I have noticed from being in education and from working closely with educational psychologists and specialists through my role as SENCo (Special Educational Needs Coordinator) but also through being hugely involved in faith based children’s ministry and church leadership, was a bit of a disconnect opening with very little of this knowledge and wisdom being discussed within churches.
And Wonderful Me! has come out of that! My hope is that I can draw on some of the rich learning and research that has emerged recently, bring my own professional experience of journeying with children with a whole range of different life experiences and needs and sprinkle it with some useful and practical strategies that will sharpen and enrich our practice as we have the huge privilege of journeying with children and their families in our communities.
Ultimately, I believe that, as the family of God, we have the opportunity to create safe spaces where every child feels seen and heard and can flourish – growing in their understanding of the wonder that they each are! That is what Wonderful Me! is all about!!
I will be offering training on areas such as:
Bringing a PACE (Playfulness, Acceptance, Curiosity, Empathy) relational approach, Understanding, supporting and responding to dis-regulation and challenging behaviour
Supporting children with additional needs
… as well as coaching and consultancy for churches and children’s ministry practitioners.
To stay in the loop, head over to the wonderfulme.org.uk website where you can find out more and sign up to our newsletter – and don’t forget to like the facebook page to keep hearing more updates!