Social & Emotional Wellbeing Programme for Children

Attachment-Based Intervention Targeting

  • Resilience

  • Self-Esteem

  • Critical Thinking

  • Positive Mental Health

  • Self-Awareness

  • Social Awareness

  • Emotional Literacy

  • Relationship Building

Evidence-based – 80% of children improved their Emotional Wellbeing!*

*Based on pre & post measures of Strengths & Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ)

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Our Programme

1463763215_bullet-yellowDesty wants to enable all children to achieve their best and be happy. We empower children by supporting their social & emotional wellbeing.

1463763215_bullet-yellowDesty is a fun, web-based, interactive tool where children can tell their own story, explore their feelings and develop coping strategies. 

1463763215_bullet-yellowDesty is the child’s online mentor.

1463763215_bullet-yellowChildren also benefit from support from their offline mentor who may be an educator, health care professional or carer.

1463763215_bullet-yellowThe offline mentor receives training and on-going support from Team Desty.

1463763215_bullet-yellowTogether Desty and the child will travel across Desty Island to develop self-awareness, emotional literacy skills, critical thinking and problem solving.

‘I can calm down more and I can talk more to the adults in my life. I could let people know how I felt without talking if I didn’t want to because I could type it or add pictures.’

Martin, Aged 8

‘It’s fun and it helps you to express your feelings when you sometimes can’t. I am happier and have someone new to talk to.’

Jason, Aged 7

‘Making the avatars for the people who you can talk to when you are worried. This helped me to remember who they are. I liked getting the certificates too because I like certificates.’

Molly, Aged 9

‘I think Desty is fun and easy to use it would help people to talk.’

Nadine, Aged 8

‘I feel Desty is enabling him to express himself. He has been closed down emotionally and through using Desty the barriers are coming down.’


‘It helped him talk about people in his life that he would share his thoughts with and helped him understand that there are lots of people that were willing to help him.’


‘It was a boost to his self-esteem. He felt very special by the end. He received his certificate during celebration assembly, and was all smiles!’


‘The fact that it is computer-based and the student is in control is a massive positive – makes a huge difference to his sense of safety and motivation and willingness to engage in thought and discussion.’



“The Desty Programme is highly compatible with the ELSA (Emotional Literacy Support Assistant) ethos. In Autumn 2015 the pilot programme ran with a group of 20 ELSAs from Hampshire, yielding some impressive results. The ELSAs received specific training and online support throughout the pilot. Indeed it is this interactive support that makes this web-based tool quite distinct from any other stand-alone emotional literacy computer programme. I am genuinely impressed by the product.”

Sheila Burton, CPsychol, AFBPsS, Founder ELSA Network UK, Former Area Principal Educational Psychologist - Hampshire, Author 'Emotional Wellbeing: an Introductory Handbook'

Become an Accredited Desty Mentor

desty_mentorKey to the programme is the relationship between the child and their mentor with online and offline activities to explore together. To support mentors we have created the Desty Mentor Academy, delivering training online or offline depending on the group size and covering all aspects of the programme delivery from start up to completion. Facilitated by an accredited Desty Trainer, it will help you and your child get the most out of the Desty Programme.

A Desty Mentor may be a teacher, ELSA (Emotional Literacy Support Assistant) or other supporting professional including psychologists and social workers.

Remember we are there to support you all the way! We provide video tutorials, learning resources, and an online community to ensure you grow as a Mentor.


UK Pilot Programme

desty_downloadThe Education DESTY pilot programme ran from September to December, 2015 and included 20 ELSAs (Emotional Literacy Support Assistants) working in schools in the Hampshire area.

What We Discovered:

  • Talking with children about their feelings is so much more successful if there are activities on which to focus.
  • The discussions that arise between children and their mentors when creating avatars, choosing and drawing pictures are rich and revealing.
  • The Desty Programme is a visual learning programme so literacy skills are no barrier.
  • Desty becomes the child’s friend, all the while strengthening the child’s bond with their mentor.
  • When children learn to recognise and understand their feelings, they can then find their own ways to regulate challenging emotions.