“I enjoyed being part of making the Thrive programme and I like that it will help other young people in their lives.”

In our last co-construction blog, we looked at the principles of co-construction and how young people at Power2 are becoming involved in creating and designing the programmes that will make a difference in their lives and the lives of others like them.

In accordance with those principles, over the past few months young people have been coming together to design our newest programme, Power2 Thrive.

The idea for Power2 Thrive came about in an online Young Leaders session over a year ago. In the middle of a full and frank discussion about mental health, talk turned to Teens and Toddlers and the benefits that programme had had for them. They felt that Teens and Toddlers, and the relationship with their toddler in particular, had helped them recognise their strengths and their own worth and improved their wellbeing, but that a more specific focus on mental health and wellbeing was required, especially in response to the additional impacts the pandemic has had on young people’s mental health.

Image of 20 smiling faces on Zoom call

From there, an idea was born – a variation on Teens and Toddlers that retained the core of the teen-toddler mentoring relationship, but that focused more closely on mental health and wellbeing. With that in mind, last summer and into the autumn we brought together several groups of young people to map out what the programme should look like.

In the sessions, young people were invited to discuss what wellbeing meant to them and what associations they make when they think of ‘mental health’ or ‘wellbeing’. They discussed what aspects of Teens and Toddlers they most enjoyed and were most beneficial and then put down their ideas for sessions and topics to be covered during Power2 Thrive. They also gave suggestions for how our staff can best support young people: “it felt good to have my ideas listened to, like when I talked about giving trigger warnings for topics that might upset people, this is now going to be part of the instructions for the team at Power2.” (Ciara)

Later on, the groups reconvened and went over the ideas from previous sessions. Together with our staff, they agreed exactly which topics and sessions should be included, developed activities for the student workbook and mapped out the full 16-week Power2 Thrive curriculum – “I believe the programme will help young people to have the space to think for themselves rather than being told what to do which is the usual way at school and at home. The programme includes topics that are usually not discussed in an open and safe environment for young people.” (Amira)

With the programme complete and the new workbook designed and printed, Power2 Thrive launched in April 2022, funded by grants from KKR, Young Manchester, and Manchester Health & Care Commissioning, and will be rolled-out further over the coming year. As Rahul, one of our youth collaboration team, said: “The project will benefit the young people that take part. Their confidence will grow, as will their self-esteem. It will also help them figure out who they are and maybe even help them decide what they want to do in the future.” Nicola added: “I think people who do the Thrive project will learn how to communicate with people. They will get to know themselves more. They’ll know that they don’t need to hide their mental health, that it's ok.”

We’re so grateful to all the young people who’ve played a part in creating Power2 Thrive. Here’s what some of them said about their experiences during the co-construction:

“I loved that we were kept updated throughout the process and we can see our feedback has been used throughout. It shows that Power2 does value us as members, and it wasn't just a 'tick box' consultation.”


“From being involved in the project I felt more confident, and I gained friends. I learnt different things and I got to learn about things I wouldn’t normally.”


“The Power2 updates on how it was progressing was really nice, I felt like I was really part of the whole process. I am grateful that I can give back to a similar programme that have helped me whilst at school.”