Information for young people about the different places you can go for help, when you need support for how you're feeling.
Finding the right support isn't always easy, especially if you're not feeling well, but it's important to remember that there are lots of places you can find help. You're not alone, and you deserve support.
This page covers the following types of support available:
"When I did reach out, everyone I told was so supportive and I really wish I'd done it earlier - the prospect of it was so much scarier than the reality."
Doctors can give you a safe space to talk and answer any questions you have. They can also:
See our page on visiting your doctor for more information.
Many schools and colleges have a school nurse, pupil support or counselling service. If you're not sure what support is available at your school you could ask a teacher or a member of staff you trust.
Close friends or family can sometimes be really helpful and comforting. They can:
See our page on talking to friends and family for tips on how you can start the conversation.
If you would like to find support in your local area run by charity organisations, you can search for services using the Anna Freud wellbeing directory.
For example, this might be counselling support, or peer support groups where you can meet with other young people to talk about your experiences and share tips.
Some local Minds also offer services for young people. You can use our online map to find your nearest service.
If you have a job, some workplaces offer free wellbeing support. To find out what support there is, you could ask your manager or HR team.
For example, some companies offer an Employee Assistance Programme, where you can talk to a counsellor in person or over the phone, in confidence for free.
These are specialist mental health services for children and young people, run by the NHS.
If you have a mental health problem or any other health problem, or are having problems at school or home, your local council can provide extra support. This might be a safe place to stay, help with money, support at school and activities outside of school.
To find out what help they offer in your area, you can speak to your local council or ask a parent or teacher to do this for you.
"If you feel uncomfortable saying your thoughts aloud, an alternative would be to write them down and give them to who you feel comfortable with."
You can talk to someone confidentially who is trained to listen and support you, over the phone, by text or by webchat. Here are some examples:
For a full list of charity organisations that offer support, visit our useful contacts page.
There might be other message boards or online groups that you find. But sometimes you might see posts, images or comments that are upsetting. It's a good idea to look for groups that:
"Check in with yourself: are message boards helping or hurting your mental health?"
There are a number of self-help books you can read, that are recommended by health professionals, such as the Reading Well Shelf Help scheme that you can get for free at your local library.
Doing little things to look after your wellbeing can be really important. It might be:
For more ideas on taking care of yourself, visit Childline for tips on things you can try when you are feeling overwhelmed or stressed.
"It can take quite a while to figure out what type of support is best… I’ve found the best support includes a range of things."
This information was published in June 2019. We will revise it in 2021.
References are available on request. If you would like to reproduce any of this information, see our page on permissions and licensing.