It’s #readforempathy day today (June 11) in many libraries – encouraging people to read stories that will help understand others’ point of view.

The idea is: ‘read stories, build empathy, make a better world’.

Here are some ILC suggestions for some great reads that might open your mind to others’ experiences:

Boys Don’t Knit – T.S.Easton

One boy’s reaction to having been a criminal, and his rehabilitation.

My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece – Annabel Pitcher

A close look at a family surviving the death of a child, and the way a close-knit group of people can fall apart.

Am I Normal Yet – Holly Bourne

An account of life post-mental health crisis, with a girl trying to stay sane in new circumstances. And a dash of romance too.

Stargirl – Jerry Spinelli

Peer pressure, non-conformity and bullying are all explored in this bewitching account of American high school life. With added ukulele.

Noughts and Crosses – Malorie Blackman
What if it were white people that history had suppressed and insulted, rather than black? Noughts and Crosses turns the world on its head, and makes you think.

The Bone Sparrow – Zana Fraillon
Take a look at life from the perspective of a refugee, born in an immigration detention centre. Understand forces that might have driven someone to leave their country and come to yours.

Mental Health Resources in the ILC

Looking after yourself can sometimes seen pretty daunting. Here in the ILC, we are able to help you to help yourself by pointing you to books and other resources.

We have a section on the shelves (currently sitting above the DVD collection in Area A,) called Shelf Help. Here you’ll find a small selection of books on a variety of topics including grief, sexuality, gender, bullying, and learning difficulties.

We also have a number of other books on a variety of topics in amongst our regular shelves including drug use, or sexual health.

Further to this, in our fiction shelves, we have books with a wide variety of topics including those listed above.

All you need to do to find any of these books is to do a search using the “library Search” shortcut you’ll find on the desktop of any school computer. You are also more than welcome to ask any of the school’s librarians if you’re unsure of where to find things. You could search for something like “cancer” and find a variety of books that might help you to deal with whatever you may be going through.

Other help around the school

You should be able to talk to any teacher on site, but especially your tutor, Assistant Head of House, or Head of House. Ms Lilley at student reception usually has an ear spare to listen and signpost you in the right direction too. Other that that, though, the school nurse comes in every Tuesday lunchtime for a drop in session, and there is a counselling service you can request through HOH.

Help online

The websites listed below are designed to help with mental health, or to provide information about a number of different topics.

Live Life To The Full – Stress, Anxiety and Depression

Mood GymCBT for anxiety and Depression

Kooth – Connect to a real counsellor online

Brook – Sex, Sexual health and Gender

YoungMinds – Information and support for mental health

Childline – Information and advice