Helpline for children and young people during the Coronavirus outbreak

Helpline for children and young people during the Coronavirus outbreak

Anyone concerned about a child or young person's mental health (or the child or young person themselves) can phone the helpline and speak to mental health experts who will provide advice, guidance and support over the telephone. The helpline should not be used for situations which are life threatening (when emergency services should be notified by phoning 999). The helpline will also help to reduce pressure on NHS 111, who are having to manage an increasing number of Covid-related calls.

The children's mental health helpline in Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire is being launched by Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust, which runs local children's mental health services. In Swindon, during the day on weekdays the helpline is provided by Swindon Borough Council.

Donan Kelly, Service Director for Mental Health for Oxon and Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire said: "When children and young people need non-emergency mental health care, support or advice they should call the 24/7 Children's Mental Health Helpline".

"Our clinicians will be able to provide the help and support to direct people to the most appropriate service. We will also be able to signpost children and young people's to resources they can access by themselves to maintain good mental wellbeing, as well as working closely with local voluntary sector organisations."

Conservative Cllr Pauline Church, Cabinet Member for Children, Education and Skills at Wiltshire Council said: "We are all experiencing a period of upheaval but it is particularly difficult for children and young people as their normal routines have disappeared and they have to stay at home. For those children who require this support, having the chance to talk to someone outside of the home at any time of the day will be an enormous benefit and we are pleased to have this essential service available for our children and young people."

Here is how to contact the children's mental health helpline:

Wiltshire:

The number to phone:

9am 5pm on a weekday 01865 903777

5pm 9am on a weekday or on weekends 01865 901000

Other useful sources of support: https://www.onyourmind.org.uk/

If you are over 18, a mental health helpline for adults in Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire has been set-up by Avon and Wiltshire Partnership. The number is 0300 3031320 and more information can be found here: http://www.awp.nhs.uk/advice-support/24-hour-support/

by Charlie Monro,