Mental health support team

Our Mental Health Support Teams work in more than 150 primary, secondary and specialist schools across Sutton, Wandsworth and Merton and in colleges in Merton, Wandsworth, Croydon, Richmond and Sutton. You might also have heard our teams referred to in the past as "Trailblazers", EWP or CWP teams. 

Each of our teams covers a "cluster" of between 10 and 15 schools and is led by a senior mental health clinician, such as a Clinical Psychologist, Psychotherapist or Counselling Psychologist. All teams include Wellbeing Practitioners who lead the 1:1 work with parents and young people. Many of our teams also include senior practitioners from a range of professions, including psychology, creative arts therapies, family therapy and CBT.

What do we do?

We are an early intervention service that aims to:  

  • Work together with schools to develop Whole School Approaches to Wellbeing and Mental Health that enhance the wellbeing of the whole school community, including children, young people, families and staff. 
  • Provide advice, consultation and resources to help children and young people get help when they need it. 
  • Offer accessible and timely evidence-based mental health and wellbeing interventions that support children and young people at an earlier stage. 
  • Strengthen collaborative working and links between schools and mental health services. 

We focus our support at the ‘Getting Advice’ and ‘Getting Help’ levels of need to provide wellbeing and mental health support and advice at a preventative or earlier stage.

getting help image 

We do this by supporting schools to embed a whole school approach to mental health and wellbeing through: 

  • Workshops, groups and webinars on Mental Health and Parenting
  • Parent coffee mornings on a range of mental health and wellbeing topics
  • One-to-one guided self-help for parents and young people
  • Staff training and workshops
  • Contributing a mental health perspective to the curriculum and to school policies
  • Consultations and signposting to appropriate services. 

Some of our teams also offer specialist consultation and intervention services to school communities, including art psychotherapy, occupational therapy, EMDR, support with emerging emotionally based-school avoidance (EBSA) and Trauma-informed training and consultation. Check with your school's Mental Health Lead to find out what's on offer in your school community.

Who can we help?

As well as our school-based workshops and group work, we offer 1:1 support to: 

Young people who are: 

  • Starting to struggle with common mental health issues, such as low mood, anxiety and difficulties with emotional regulation
  • Not currently receiving support from CAMHS or Children and Family Services
  • Able to attend 6-8 weekly sessions in school
  • Keen to explore CBT-based guided self-help: a structured, practical approach, which includes completing some tasks between sessions
  • Experiencing difficulties that are straightforward enough to benefit from an early intervention approach

 Parents of primary school children who are: 

  • Looking for support to understand and manage tricky behaviours, such as difficulties at bedtime, tantrums, not following instructions, etc.
  • Keen to explore new ways of supporting their child(ren) with common fears and worries, like separation anxiety, specific phobias, trying new things, being sick, etc.
  • Able to reliably attend a series of between 4 and 8 weekly sessions (these can be delivered face-to-face, in school, or online)
  • Not currently open to CAMHS or Children and Family Services
  • Experiencing difficulties that are straightforward enough to benefit from an early intervention approach

How do we get in touch?

We are a school and college-based service. If you are interested in receiving support from one of our teams, speak to your school/college’s Mental Health Lead. Generally speaking, our referrals are made through schools/colleges. Parents and young people can self-refer but we will always link in with the school/college's Mental Health Lead when a referral is received. 

If you would like further information about our service and the work we do, please email:  

We also run webinars throughout the year for parents of both primary and secondary students on a range of wellbeing and mental health topics. Please book via Eventbrite.

Feedback from young peope

“It was very helpful. A lot of the things I learned I will probably use for the rest of my life”.  

"It made me feel like I was listened to and it made me more certain that there are people here to help me and care for me. When I’m upset I tended to think of the worst thing but now I have different methods to cope with the moment so it will be easier for me to get out of the sadness. Now I can distract myself, do a valued activity or challenge my thoughts or problem solving". 

I was able to express my thoughts and life as a whole in an unbiased space without judgement. They gave me the information needed to progress with my personal problems, identify and solve them. Not once did I feel uncomfortable or misunderstood. I would refer a friend to this service if they went through similar issues." 

"They supported me in the ways I felt and how to handle these emotions. It was really good and I really enjoyed having someone I can talk to about how I feel and how to stop those thoughts."

Feedback from parents

“We have come away from the sessions with more tools to support our child, and an open mind. One of the greatest takeaways from our sessions was the normalisation of anxiety. Having always struggled with anxiety as a child and an adult myself, I wish this service had been available when I was young so that my parents could have supported me better. We have been able to implement the tools and techniques we were taught and we have seen a difference in our child's anxiety. Whilst there are no quick fixes, or fixes at all, for anxiety, this has helped us communicate with our child about their anxiety in a non-judgmental and open way which will greatly benefit our family in the long-term.”

  “I have learned ways to support my daughter's emotion regulation. I have found that validating her feelings have helped a lot. We also use sensory strategies to help her regulate and she is much less worried than she used to be.  I have a so many tools in my toolbox and all have helped in so many ways.”

 “You have changed our lives. We were desperate before and did not think things could get any better. The skills and strategies have helped us to respond differently and be more calm. We are now both using the skills and feel more confident. We are enjoying spending time as a family and are very grateful. There are still challenges but we feel more confident managing them now and have hope for the future.”

Feedback from schools

“The relationships built with the team have made working within the cluster a pleasure and an excellent support to students, parents and staff. Our students have shown much improvement in their ability to manage their emotional wellbeing and low level mental health concerns.”

 “Thank you so much for all the support you have given to so many of our young people in school. This will have made such a difference.”