Self-esteem sessions for children as young as eight to be set up in North Herts

Kelsie Woolass pictured with Gaynor Dawson, at Enhance and Inspire

Kelsie Woolass pictured with Gaynor Dawson, at Enhance and Inspire - Credit: Archant

A woman who runs workshops in Hitchin and Letchworth to help teenagers boost their self esteem has been besieged with requests from parents to set up a similar programme for children aged eight to 10.

Gaynor Dawson, founder of coaching service Enhance & Inspire, told the Comet her workshops which help girls aged 11 to 13 with their self esteem are so in demand she has started running weekend group sessions.

She said anxiety, stress, self harming and eating disorders are just some of the conditions she addresses.

Now she is setting up workshops for the under 10s, which will be available to both boys and girls.

Gaynor said: “It is very, very sad but it is hard being a child these days. It has surprised us just how many parents have asked for these classes.”

She said more and more parents were concerned that their pre-teens were displaying problems with food and body issues.

“I think the internet and social media has a lot to answer for,” she said. “They are just not happy in their own skin, they don’t feel that they are good enough.”

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Parents divorcing and girls on a quest to achieve perfection were also common issues she dealt with.

Gaynor founded her one-to-one coaching service after studying psychology while raising her three children.

Her youngest developed a ‘food phobia’ aged five, and after learning about NLP – neuro linguistic programming – therapy, a goal-orientated approach to problem solving, she started her company.

Since November 2012 she has been taking her workshops to schools throughout North Herts teaching groups of girls how to improve their self esteem.

Gaynor, whose offices are based in Bucklesbury, in Hitchin, said: “This is a sweeping statement, but girls tend to internalise.

“It is really sad but I think if we can teach them this when they are young, then they will grow into emotionally healthy adults.”

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