Earlier this month our 5th consortium meeting took place online. Our original plan was to meet in Wroclaw, Poland where our partners from Marshal’s Office of Lower Silesia were going to welcome us and host the meeting. Due to COVID-19, we were not able to meet face to face this time. Representatives from all partners attended the meeting and discussed the progress and upcoming period of the UPRIGHT project.

Implementation and evaluation

Irantzu Izco-Basurko from Kronikgune opened the meeting and welcomed participants. The focus was on the implementation and evaluation of the UPRIGHT programme. Louise Tidmand from Aarhus University presented the appendix with real-life examples of exercises from the Well-being for ALL manual and Carlota Las Hayas from Kronikgune showed us a proposal for an online e-learning system of the teachers on the Well-being for US manual; this is something necessary since some of our schools had to change to online teaching due to the COVID-19 restrictions and would also serve as a basis for the final version of the UPRIGHT intervention after the research project. Our consortium members have worked hard the last months in adapting the programme in order to meet the needs of our UPRIGHT schools and teachers during these uncertain times; at the same time that the procedures were to be scientifically and methodologically correct.

Silvia Gabrielli from Bruno Kessler Foundation in Italy followed up on their presentations with the deployment plan for the third school year. She presented the analysis of the implementation data from the second school year of UPRIGHT and discussed the areas of improvements with participants. The session ended on a debate with pilot sites regarding the start-up of the school year in the UPRIGHT regions, the current situation regarding the programmes and potential problems.

Maider Mateo and Nerea González from our evaluation team presented both the quantitative and qualitative results and the impact the COVID-19 outbreak has had on the mental health outcomes of the participating adolescents.

Partner’s corner

Participants from the University of Iceland, Aarhus University in Denmark, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and Marshal’s office in Poland all had their slots in the agenda where they discussed issues related to their work in UPRIGHT. The Norwegian team updated us on the status of upcoming scientific articles and members from our pilot sites discussed areas of improvement and strategies needed for the third and last school year of UPRIGHT.

External ethical advisory board meeting

The second day the meeting started with our external ethical advisory board. They were informed of the impact the COVID-19 has had on the project and the contingency plan on the implementation and the evaluation. Their contribution and recommendations are essential in identifying areas of improvement in the development of the UPRIGHT project.

The other sessions that day were on dissemination and the coordination of the project. The COVID-19 outbreak has both taken from us and given us dissemination opportunities. Sólveig Karlsdóttir and Dóra Guðmundsdóttir from the Directorate of Health in Iceland introduced a summary of conferences and events taken place 2020 and discussed further dissemination opportunities. Irantzu Izco-Basurko then presented the 2nd periodic report for the project, next consortium meeting and detailed plan until January 2021.

Overall, the meeting was a success, and we thank our coordinators, Kronikgune, for the organisation and all partners for their contribution. We will continue to develop the programme and realize that it might never be as important as now in times of uncertainty. It is our hope that the UPRIGHT programme will help students, families and teachers to adapt to new circumstances now and in the future.