Public sector news in brief

SURREY: Surrey County Council this week launched a campaign aimed at raising awareness of mental health problems among young people.

Called ‘Feeling Good Week’, the campaign aims to encourage children to share their thoughts and feelings through events at schools, including massage and yoga workshops, as well as puppet shows. It is estimated that more than 10,000 children in the county may have mental health problems.

DEVELOPMENT AGENCY: The East of England Development Agency has launched the next phase of its Space For Ideas campaign, aimed at encouraging businesses to set up in the area and to help local firms develop. The latest phase involves promoting a series of essays written exclusively for the agency by ‘leading thinkers’ such as Edward de Bono and environmentalist Jonathan Porritt.

WESTMINSTER: Westminster City Council has launched a community engagement campaign on the issue of civic renewal. The campaign lasts a year and targets community groups and businesses, seeking their views on the way the council has handled civic renewal in the past and where they believe improvements are needed.

ENVIRONMENT: The Environment Agency has pledged to work closer with the farming community over the issue of water pollution. A spokeswoman said that it was important not to be seen as dictating to farmers and to make sure they had access to information about ways of avoiding water pollution. The comments were made as the agency welcomed the Government’s latest strategy in tackling water pollution.

LIVERPOOL: A campaign to promote creativity among young people has been launched by Liverpool City Council. ‘Liverpool Creates’ involves a ‘festival of creativity’ at the city’s St George’s Hall. It is hoped the campaign will take place annually ahead of Liverpool becoming the European Capital of Culture in 2008.

HEALTHCARE: The British Medical Association has launched a campaign this week calling for more students from working-class backgrounds to enter the profession. A report released this week said that the profession is unrepresentative of the public because the majority of hospital doctors, GPs and dentists come from high social classes. Medical schools are being urged to avoid discrimination against those from low social classes.

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