We see children and young people with emotional and mental health needs. We sometimes find they are struggling with relationships at home or with peers or teachers. They may experience lack of confidence, low self-esteem, stress or anxiety, which impacts upon life (e.g. school work, or socialising).
It is OK to feel sad, worried, or angry, or sometimes just like you don't fit in. Other people may have talked to you about this already to try and help. If these feelings are not going away or are getting worse and stopping you from doing the things you used to enjoy, we would like to help you. When referred to our services, you will meet with someone who wants to talk with you and try out things that might help. We will work with you, and often your family, to understand and help you with your problems. We want you to feel supported and safe when you come to see us.
CAMHS Early Help (Trailblazer and CWP teams) have been developing a number of videos for parents, teens and school staff on a range of mental health and wellbeing topics. Link to the YouTube channel is below and we are also adding new videos regularly.
When you come to your first appointment, which is called an initial assessment, the staff may talk to you about why they have been asked to see you and they will give you the opportunity to talk about how you are feeling. Then we can work together to find the best way to help you. You might find it useful to write down things you would like to say or questions you may have before your appointment.
Some questions you might want to ask during your first appointment are:
- How often will I have to come here?
- Will the person I see at the first appointment be the person who I will always see?
- If medication is talked about you may want to ask what it is, how much, how long for, are there any side effects to look out for and what happens when I no longer need it?
- How information is shared about the treatment and care being offered to you or your relative – who will know and why?
- How the care and treatment offered by the service is reviewed and monitored – including how your views will be included in this?
Other things that can help:
- Make a diary of any feelings or issues that you are worried about.
- Write things down beforehand that you want to ask about or check out.
- Allow plenty of time to find the place where the appointment will be.
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If you are a child or young person who is really struggling with your mental health, or you care for a young person who is struggling, there are trusted adults you can talk to for support. These include people at your school and in the wider community, such as:
- your teacher or a school counsellor
- school health nurse
- your family doctor, also known as a GP
- social worker
- Families Plus or Families in Focus
- community paediatricians
Children and young people need to be referred by a professional. PLEASE PROVIDE MORE INFO
CAMHS is a service for all and we are keen to ensure that every Child or Young person referred to our teams feels able to access services and engage in treatment. We recognise that there may be barriers which have historically stopped young people from reaching out or engaging with services (e.g. protected characteristics such as race, ethnicity and culture; gender; sexuality; age; and ability).
- Please do talk to your health professional about factors you feel are important for us to know (no topic is off bounds) or whether we need to adapt treatment to support you. This could be anything from translation services, clinician's awareness of issues faced by the LGBTQIA+ community, understanding of cultural factors or adaptation of therapy materials.
- We recognise it can be hard for young people to talk about sensitive topics. Whilst we are not perfect, we are making steps to ensure we continually improve to ensure CAMHS services are inclusive for all.
We aim to provide a safe space for young people to talk. If you don't feel you can talk to your health professional, for any reason, then you can contact the Team Manager or join one of the participation groups (to enquire please email firstname.lastname@example.org). Please help us shape the future of our services!
SWLSTG has also made a commitment to actively moving towards anti-racism and we are keen to ensure this culture is embedded into the fabric of CAMHS. If you have any feedback please contact email@example.com.
What is Transitions Work?
When young people turn 18, they are no longer supported by CAMHS and may need ongoing support from an adult mental health service. The period of transitioning out of CAMHS can feel unsettling, especially when other changes may be taking place in your life. It can feel daunting not knowing what adult mental health support is out there and where to go to ask for help after leaving CAMHS. This is why we have a transitions team, we are here to help guide you through the process of leaving CAMHS and navigate the support that’s out there for you.
Who is this service for?
Young people in CAMHS, approaching 18 who may need ongoing support from adult services once they leave CAMHS.
What do Transition Workers do?
Transition workers support young people and their families through the process of identifying and accessing the most appropriate service to continue supporting them beyond the age of 18. This may include:
- An assessment of the difficulties the young person is experiencing, what they would like support with and their goals for the future.
- Information sharing around what support is available to young adults in the local area and how these services work as this may be different to CAMHS.
- Making referrals to adult mental health services on behalf of the young person and liaising with professionals in those teams to ensure a smooth transfer of care.
- Completing a transition passport with the young person containing important information about the young person and their needs to be shared with their new team.
- Attending joint appointments with the young person and their new adult team.
- Providing a comprehensive Transition Support Plan for the young person to be shared with relevant people in their lives including parents, GP, the new team and school/ college.
What to expect?
Once you turn 18, you are responsible for your own healthcare decisions which can feel daunting and so part of our goal as transition workers is to help prepare you for these changes and make sense of your feelings around becoming an adult. Some people may find that after they finish their therapeutic work with us, they don’t need any further support from other services. In these cases, we have a ‘Leaving CAMHS Guide’ that details some of the services that are available through self-referral should you ever feel like you may need support again. Some of the services will be for when if you are ever experiencing a mental health crisis and need more immediate support whilst others will be for support with more general mental health difficulties.