The Link Programme

Today, more than ever, joint working is essential for services to identify and best meet the mental health needs of children, young people and their families. Our programmes are continuing online and are freely available to all sites in England, connecting CCGs, local authorities, education colleagues and mental health professionals virtually. The Interim Approach to Joint Working is a programme focusing on the short term challenges in the locality as a result of COVID-19, and the closure of schools to the majority of pupils, and the actions needed to meet these challenges. The Link Programme builds on this and looks at medium to long term ways of working together in 2021 and beyond. 

The Interim Approach to Joint Working brings together education settings and mental health services to identify challenges as a result of COVID-19. You will collaboratively develop solutions to better support children and young peoples’ mental health and wellbeing. To find out more about the programme and how to get involved, click here.

The Link Programme is a major national initiative, specifically designed to enable collaboration between education and mental health professionals. In building collaboration across local areas, it seeks to get more children and young people the help and support they need, when they need it.

The national roll-out of the programme started in September 2019. It is led by the Anna Freud Centre, funded by the Department for Education and supported by NHS England. Clinical Commissioning Groups play a lead role in their local area, with the Anna Freud Centre offering support every step of the way.

The Link Programme is available free of charge, including to all schools and colleges. It is currently being delivered online through a combination of self-study and live, interactive workshops. Evaluation of the programme to date has found stronger communication and collaboration between the education and health sectors as a result of their involvement.

Find out more about the programme, how it is delivered and the benefits of taking part using the links below.

Register your interest in the programme

  • Now recruiting CCGs, schools colleges and mental health professionals to take part in spring 2021 - contact now
  • "We feel that the Link Programme was the last piece in the jigsaw to bring all these professionals together and really unify our activities in Telford and Wrekin" - Andy Cooke, Service Delivery Manager in Pupil Support Services at Telford & Wrekin Council, reflects on the impact of the programme in his locality.
  • Find out how Salford CCG successfully brought the Link Programme to their area -
If you are a school or college or mental health service and wish to take part, please use the map to contact your local CCG
Not currently recruiting
Previously engaged
Recruiting live
Link Programme complete
Programme Totals
CCGs engaged
Schools & Colleges trained

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