It’s important to ensure that there is advice and help available when a child or young person has emotional or mental well-being problems, although most will manage the ups and downs of life with the support of parents, family and friends. If, however, your child or young person isn’t managing then there is a range of advice and support on offer.
Talk to your school pastoral leader or SENCO, as they will be able to consider ways to support your child. Pastoral staff can support children through group or individual interventions to address issues such as bereavement, attachment, anxiety, social stories, friendships, self-regulation/anger. They may include support through an Emotional Literacy Support Assistant (ELSA) or Wellbeing Worker.
Local Area Teams (LAT) are a key part of York’s early help response to working with children, young people and families from pregnancy through to adulthood. Early Help aims to support practitioners to work together to improve outcomes for children and young people.
If you’re struggling with your feelings, you're not alone. Young Minds have loads of practical tips and advice from young people just like you, as well as information on getting the support you need.
TEWV (the local NHS children’s mental health provider) has developed the Recovery College Online. In the Recovery College webpages, you can find out about approaches to self help and advice and information, and some films about mental health support. This information is useful for children and young people, families, and professionals who might be offering support to families. Anyone can access the website: you have to complete a registration form first, which includes the first part of your postcode, eg YO23. Don’t worry, this isn’t used to track you, the Recovery College is only available in certain areas, and the website needs to know that users are from the areas it covers.
Emotional Literacy Support Assistants (ELSAs) have been in place in York schools since 2010. The initial pilot was so successful that when central funding ceased, York chose to develop a mainstreaming strategy to sustain the model. York Educational Psychology (EP) Service delivers the 6-day ELSA course annually and offers access to geographical support groups on a termly basis. ELSAs are school staff, typically teaching assistants/pastoral staff, who support children and young people with social and emotional difficulties and emerging mental health needs, which can create barriers to learning. The role of the ELSA is to deliver planned time-limited interventions in schools and settings on an individual or small group basis. The training covers a range of topics including:
o Emotional Literacy
o Self-esteem and Resilience
o Active Listening and Solution-focused Conversations
o Early Trauma and Attachment
o Understanding Anger
o Loss and Bereavement
o Therapeutic Stories
o Nurturing Classrooms
o Social Skills and friendship skills
Interventions usually last for at least half a term and focus on the achievement of specific outcomes. ELSAs develop nurturing relationships through typically weekly sessions with the child or young person, but often also work hard to engage the parent(s)/carers. ELSAs often deliver an intervention in collaboration with the School’s Wellbeing Worker (SWW) or with their support. The ELSA training course continues to be in high demand. York is now part of the national ELSA Network and has been instrumental in establishing the north east regional network.
The School Wellbeing Workers (SWW) are managed by the Local Authority (LA), clinically supervised by Child Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) and linked to a cluster of schools. Their focus is to work with children and young people (cyp) and school staff around emerging and developing mental health need. The SWW will provide:
• Consultation, advice and support
• Training and continued professional development
• Facilitating pathways to different care and support- including specialist services
• Working in partnership to deliver evidenced based direct work to children and young people
The School Wellbeing Service is a consultation school based service.
• Requests and access for the involvement of the SWW should be made in collaboration with a pastoral lead/SENCo for each school.
• Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) will notify the SWW of any children or young people who have presented to CAMHS, when there is an emotional or mental health need, and where they have not met CAMHS criteria.
• Other professionals such as school nurses and local area support practitioners can also notify the SWS of CYP where there are concerns about emotional and mental health in order for us to initiate a consultation within school, this will allow the SWW to consider the support that could be put in place for the CYP.
• Requests from parents/carers should be directed to the pastoral lead/SENCo within school.
Who we work with:
The service is targeted at emerging and developing emotional and mental health need. In particular at CYP who are presenting with mental health needs and concerns, that are below an intervention from specialist CAMHS and above what school pastoral structures can support.
This is provided by Mind, and offers free sessions.
For more information and a referral form, please see York Mind website
This is the children and young people’s mental health service run by TEWV. You may be referred here by your GP or on the advice of school, you can also self-refer. The service offers support and intervention to young people experiencing mental health difficulties (including the diagnosis of ADHD and ASC) from age 5 to 18 years.
To self refer, you can contact the Single Point of Access (SPA) at Orca House to contact the service. You will be offered a telephone conversation which may last up to 30 minutes, during which you may be sign posted to a different appropriate service or you may be offered a face to face or video assessment. The number is 01904 615345
The team are based at Orca House, York. YO10 3JB.
The TEWV website (opens in a new tab) outlines more information about the service
Eating disorders, such as anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa are best treated with specialist support; getting help early means a much better rate of recovery.
There is a specialist eating disorder clinic at Orca House; if your child or young person appears to have an eating disorder, then your GP is likely to refer for assessment, or self referral may also be made, by calling 01904 615345. If the circumstances appear urgent, then you should be assessed and able to start treatment within a week of referral. If the circumstances seem less urgent, then treatment should start within a month.
You should expect that your child or young person with work with a mental health worker, a dietician and also GP or paediatrician to ensure that physical health is maintained and improved.
There are a number of organisations offering advice and information about eating disorders, including Beat.
There is also guidance and information on the NHS website.
If you have a concern that a child is vulnerable or at risk of significant harm please contact the Children's Front Door:
Phone: 01904 551900
Post: The Children's Front Door, West Offices, Station Rise, York, YO1 6GA
Outside office hours, at weekends and on public holidays contact the emergency duty team, telephone: 01609 780780
If a child or young person is in crisis, the mental health crisis team will be able to offer advice and support by telephone 24/7. The service is for young people under the age of 18 years who present following an episode of deliberate self-harm, acute and uncontained emotional distress or display high levels of risk taking behaviour requiring immediate attention in the community. The children and young people’s crisis team is provided by TEWV, and their phone number is 08000 516171.
The Educational Psychology (EP) Service offers consultation and support to school staff when there has been a critical incident within the school community, such as the death of a member of staff or pupil. Research suggests that children and young people are best supported directly by trusted and familiar staff who can offer ongoing support, so the work of the EP Service is focused on helping Senior Leaders and key staff to manage the situation within school.
There are many websites that can offer advice and information about emotional and mental well being and health, including: