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New mental wellbeing support for children and young people

by Sandra Issar

The past few months have been hard on everyone, including children and young people.

Research reveals that the coronavirus outbreak has caused an increase in anxiety in young people, and more than a third of children report being more worried, sad and stressed than before lockdown

Public Health England’s new Better Health – Every Mind Matters campaign – provides NHS-endorsed tips and advice, developed in partnership with leading children and young people’s mental health charities, to help young people build resilience and equips them to look after their mental wellbeing.

The campaign also provides parents and carers with the knowledge to support their children.

The NHS-approved advice includes:

Be there to listen: Ask the children and young people you look after how they are doing regularly so they get used to speaking about their feelings

  • Stay involved in their life: Show interest in their life and the things that are important to them
  • Support positive routines: Be a positive role model and support positive behaviours including regular bed routines, healthy eating and getting active
  • Encourage their interests: Being active, creative, learning things and being a part of a team are all good for mental health. Support children and young people to explore their interests
  • Take what they say seriously: help the children and young people you look after feel valued in what they say and help them work through difficult emotions.

Cllr Sean Donnelly, Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, said:

“The past few months have been hard on everyone, including our children but fortunately there are lots of things we can do to support them at this time.


“Better Health – Every Mind Matters will help you find what’s right for your children – whether it’s listening to them talk about the challenges they’re facing or helping them develop skills to cope with their emotions.”

A range of agencies offer resources or free, confidential advice specifically for young people, many of which are available 24/7.

24/7 mental health support for young people

Urgent mental health support is available to children and young people from the NHS 24 hours a day, seven days a week and is operated by people locally. You can access free support anytime on 0800 051 1508.

Samaritans is another organisation that offers free mental health support to people of all ages at any time by calling 116 118.

Shout is a 24/7 text service, free on all major mobile networks, for anyone in crisis anytime, anywhere. Text 85258 for support.

Local support services

Knowsley Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) is a referral service for children and young people in Knowsley whose emotional, behavioural or mental health issues are causing them problems in their school, family or social life. The service is available on 0151 290 4999 between 9am-5pm, Mon-Fri. They also have a crisis line available until 9pm on 01744 627 618.

Kooth is a service for young people in Knowsley, aged between 10 and 19 years, to access free counselling and wellbeing support. The online support is free, safe and anonymous and you can get advice on a range of topics developed by young people themselves, chat to the friendly Kooth community or speak to a member of the Kooth team.