This animation has been developed for professionals within education as an introduction to trauma and recovery, and to facilitate the work they do in supporting students who have been affected by trauma.

About the Animation

This animation was commissioned by the We Love Manchester Emergency Fund (WLMEF); the charity set up after the Manchester Arena attack on 22 May 2017. Trustees of the WLMEF recognised that there were many young people caught up in the Arena attack and heard reports of the challenges they faced returning to school, college or university. The Trustees wanted to help professionals across educational settings better understand how trauma might impact their students and it was decided that a short animation would be an accessible way of beginning to do this. It is hoped that this animation will be a lasting legacy of the WLMEF.


We would like to acknowledge the bravery of the young people who came forward and thank them for sharing their stories.

We would like to thank the Manchester Resilience Hub for their clinical expertise and advice throughout the development of this project.

Young People's Voices

The narrative in this animation is provided by a group of young people who had been present at the Arena on the night of the attack. They came together in August 2018 to describe their on-going journey of recovery. Their hope was that their experiences would help educational professionals better understand trauma and be able to offer support to other young people who might have experienced trauma. They also wanted other young people to know that they are not alone in their recovery from trauma.

Download Resource Pack

The animation is an introduction to trauma and recovery and has been developed to support educational professionals in understanding and supporting students who have been affected by trauma. It does not attempt to address the impact of surviving a terrorist attack.

The written materials have been developed with mental health clinicians and teachers to facilitate staff training and discussion.

Download resource pack

Using the Animation with Students

Professionals within education may feel that the animation would be useful for students to watch as part of a broader discussion on mental health. Recent statutory guidance means that health education will be compulsory in all schools from September 2020 and this includes a focus on mental health and wellbeing.

The written materials can be used as part of a lesson plan; they were written with this possibility in mind. However, there are some important considerations if the animation is to be used with students.

Trauma and adversity impact us all in different ways and at different times in our lives. None of us can know the trauma that individuals may have gone through or could be going through at any given time. It is therefore very important to give prior warning to students about the nature of the animation and to give some choice as to whether participation in the session is appropriate and what to do if anyone does become distressed.

Students need to know that hearing about other people’s reactions to trauma may mean they connect with their own experiences, which, although normal, can be distressing. Conversations about how students can look after themselves both during and after the animation can be facilitated using the final two pages of the downloadable resource pack; looking after yourself.

Having conversations with more vulnerable students prior to showing the animation can help students make informed choices about whether they feel able to watch the animation.

Below is a short script that can be downloaded and adapted to use with students in preparation for watching the animation.

Download script

About We Love Manchester Emergency Fund

On 22 May 2017 a terror attack at the Manchester Arena killed 22 people and injured many more. Following the attack people from all around the world started to donate money to show their love, support and solidarity. The We Love Manchester Emergency Fund (WLMEF) was established within days to coordinate, administer and distribute the money donated in response to the attack and was formerly registered as a charity on 30 May 2017. WLMEF received over £21.8M in total and has distributed the funds in various tranches as gifts to the bereaved families next of kin, to those physically and psychologically injured.

Further information can be found on the website and within the Annual report for 2017-2018.

Have you been affected by the Manchester Arena attack?

Trauma can have a long lasting impact on people and those around them. We know that everyone recovers in different ways and sometimes it can be years later that people recognise they are struggling and need some help. Anniversaries, memorials and legal proceeding can be difficult to navigate and can trigger distress and sometimes symptoms of post-traumatic stress.

Help is out there and it can take many forms; if you or someone you know would like further information or help you can contact a number of services.

Manchester Attack Support website

This website was set up with a number or organisations to provide information to and support to those affected by the Manchester Arena attack.

Manchester Resilience Hub

The MRH is an enhanced NHS mental health service set up to specifically help people who have been affected by the Manchester Arena attack.

You can contact MRH if you

  • have been directly affected by the incident
  • have a family member who was affected
  • were working at the Arena that night, either as staff, at the station, or an emergency responder

The Journey Of Recovery – Supporting Young People Overcoming Trauma

Trauma and adversity impact on everyone in different ways and at different times in life. Listening to other people’s experiences of trauma and recovery can create strong personal reactions, particularly if you or someone you care about has been affected by a traumatic event or bereavement.

If you think this animation could cause you distress, we advise that you watch it when you have support available to you during or after watching the animation.

Legal disclaimer

© Doodledo Motion Ltd. All rights reserved and no reproduction or copying of any part of this animation can be made without permission.

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