MY STRENGTHS TRAINING FOR LIFE (MST4LIFE)
All young people have the capacity for growth and personal development. My Strengths Training for Life (MST4Life) uses a distinctly strengths-based approach informed by clinical and sports psychology to support young people to achieve their goals.
The MST4Life programme has become a central component of a large housing provider's support and wellbeing offer to young people. Those who are currently NEET (Not in Education, Employment or Training) are particularly encouraged to take part in the programme.
MST4Life uses similar techniques to those used by sports coaches to help young people establish aspirations, set goals and utilise support networks to develop confidence, teamwork, problem-solving, and a range of other mental skills. All this is aimed at helping residents, many of whom have complex needs and are at risk of isolation, social disadvantage and poor mental health.
Just as successful sportsmen and women develop their mental skills to reach new heights in their sport, the programme helps young people develop the mental skills to navigate the job market, build healthy relationships, and manage their mental health.
Read the MST4Life impact case here.
The MST4Life programme includes 4 key stages. First, each programme starts with a stakeholder consultation to understand the specific needs of the young people and staff at a particular project better. From here, the main programme consists of two phases: 10 life skills workshops and a 4-day residential trip to an outdoors pursuit centre (see below for more detail). Finally, each programme is concluded with a follow-up meeting to receive feedback and see how the young people are progressing in the lives (2-3 months after phase 2).
In Phase 1 of the MST4Life programme, participants engage in 10 experientially-oriented sessions informed by both sports and clinical psychology.
These sessions are designed to be fun, allow participants to engage in a variety of ways, and focus on developing an awareness and practice of mental skills.
After Phase 1 of their MST4Life training programme, participants have an opportunity to attend a four-day residential in the Lake District
Alongside a range of outdoor adventure activities, participants take on a challenging hike in the mountains, putting their physical and mental skills to the test