The YAFTA Project teaches acting classes in schools with a focus on the development of psychological skills to support individual student growth, mental health and wellbeing. 

The school environment is one of the most influential places in a child’s life. Outside of their home environment, children spend most of their time at school. It is this space that provides the opportunity for boundaried and structured mental health support through acting classes that offer a non-invasive, therapeutic way of fostering positive mental health.

With our many years of experience training actors, working psychologically in the film & TV industry, and researching in the field, we understand the psychological benefits of participating in acting classes.

Our team of qualified, trained acting tutors and mental health professionals have developed a creative, engaging and inclusive programme aimed at supporting children before their mental health may reach a point where more intensive interventions are required. 


It is our mission to use acting classes to support the psychological development and mental health of all school-age pupils to help provide preventative and protective support against the development of mental illness in adulthood.  We aim to help schools to recognise and utilise the benefits of acting for screen to support the psychological health of their students from the ages of 4 years to 18 years old.


50% of mental illnesses begin before the age of 13


9% Children and young people with diagnosable mental health problems are more likely to be assessed as being behind in their schooling, with 9% assessed as being two or more years behind. (3)


1/4 of children and young people with mental health problems report not going into school due to concerns about what others think about their mental health problems. (2)


18x children and young people with mental health disorders are eighteen times more likely to be excluded from school than those without (1)

Statistics taken from 1) Meltzer, et al. (2003). Persistence, onset, risk factors and outcomes of childhood mental disorders. | 2) Time to Change (2014). Students missing out on education because of mental illness | 3) PQ 207563, 5 September 2014 | 4) Knapp, et al. (2016). Youth Mental Health: New Economic Evidence | 5)  Childhood mental health and life chances in post-war Britain: Insights from three national birth cohort studies (2009) | 6)  Goodman, et al. (2011). The long shadow cast by childhood physical and mental problems on adult life. | 7) HMIP (2016). Children in Custody 2015-16: An analysis of 12-18 year olds’ perceptions of their experiences in secure training centres and young offender institutions. | 8) Healthcare Commission (2009). Actions speak louder: A second review of healthcare in the community for young people who offend. | 9) Parsonage, et al. (2014). Building a better future: the lifetime costs of childhood behavioural problems and the benefits of early intervention. Centre for Mental Health. 

Acting classes have helped me when meeting new people. I feel a lot more comfortable and confident expressing myself and I understand my emotions better.

Morven Robinson

YAFTA Student

Before YAFTA I was quite shy, it has given me so much confidence. I always leave the class on a high with a huge smile. It has enabled me to communicate better in the outside world too.

Sophie Martin

YAFTA Student

YAFTA Classes have provided me with more confidence and helped me develop a more positive outlook on life and career.

Poppy Crabb

YAFTA Student


If you are interested in offering YAFTA Acting Classes in your school, please contact us.

We look forward to hearing from you. 




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