A PROJECT which supports students with mental health issues is expanding so it can reach more young people.

Following successful work with students at the Sir John Colfox Academy over the past two years, ASPIRE is now able to help pupils at Mountjoy School. Now in its 11th year, ASPIRE is a partnership between voluntary company BEST (Bridport Enterprise Supporting Training) Ltd and the BYPAT (Bridport Young Person’ Action Trust) charity.

Recent funding support from West Dorset MENCAP and Bridport Lions Club has enabled its co-ordinator, Charlotte Storey, to begin working with Mountjoy.

Charlotte will focus on the sixth form whilst providing training sessions for the school’s teaching assistants so they, in turn, may offer student support that complements the ASPIRE programme.

Mountjoy deputy headteacher, Tracey Page, said: “We are really looking forward to working with ASPIRE to further our pupils’ life opportunities and future goals and enable them to be the best versions of themselves possible going forward into adulthood.”

Linda Simpson, chairman of West Dorset MENCAP, added: “Our charity is delighted to support ASPIRE, which is already providing valuable support to young people in our local area. We are extremely pleased that Charlotte will now be extending her support to pupils at Mountjoy and ensuring they are offered the best opportunities for developing their skills.”

Charlotte’s work at the Sir John Colfox Academy has been described by staff as ‘potentially life changing’ and continues throughout the school holidays.

Lions Club president, Sheila Burton, added: “We are delighted the ASPIRE project can now offer support to the students at Mountjoy School. Looking after the mental health of our young people now will have a tremendous benefit in the future. The Lions Club of Bridport continues to raise funds to give help wherever it is needed in our community.”

For more details about ASPIRE, contact a.c.woodgate@btinternet.com or call 01308 423767.