Vital summer counselling service available to help support Falkirk youngsters' mental health and well being

Falkirk Council is well aware youngsters’s mental health and well being may be suffering – especially after the last year they have endured – and has ensured support will be available for them over the summer holidays.

Wednesday, 23rd June 2021, 12:33 pm

As Falkirk starts to return to a new form of normality, we may forget many youngsters have been through a tremendously traumatic time.

People cannot be unaware, too, of the number of tragedies which have seen young people in the area die before their time this year alone.

It is with this in mind that Falkirk Council – specifically Falkirk Children’s Commission – is offering support to young people over the school holidays, from July 5 through to September 3.

A summer counselling service is available to youngsters who may be struggling with their mental health and well being
A summer counselling service is available to youngsters who may be struggling with their mental health and well being

In a message to parents sent out this week it states: “The last 18 months have been difficult for everyone. Falkirk Council is offering a summer counselling provision with Relationships Scotland Central for young people aged 10 to 18.

"Counselling gives people a chance to talk with a trained counsellor about things they are dealing with. Young people can be referred via school or by self-referral. Those aged 10 to 12 will need parental consent.”

The message came with additional information about the counselling.

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It stated: “Counselling gives you a chance to talk with a trained counsellor about things you might be dealing with or difficult feelings. It is about helping you to make sense of things, work things out for yourself and make your own decisions without being judged or criticised.

“Counselling gives you time and space for you and nobody else.”

Youngsters may feel the need to attend a free counselling session if they are having low mood, feeling anxious or stressed, wanting to hurt themselves or others – basically they can talk about anything that may be troubling them at this time.

The advice states: “What you talk about is private between you and your counsellor. Only if you or another child or young person was at risk of serious harm would information need to be shared with another service.

"Parents/carers may want to know about your progress. We would encourage you to talk to them about your counselling, but we will not share information with them without your permission.”

Falkirk Children’s Commission is currently working together with local people – including children and their parents and carers – to develop a new design for services looking after young people’s mental health and well being.

A Falkirk Children’s Commission spokesperson said: “We do recognise there is a need out there and it’s about creating services which meet that need. We need to design something that will allow young people to get the help they need when they need it.

“Partners have come together to understand what the local needs are, what services we have for them just now and what needs to be changed. We are doing this together with local people – working with children and families, NHS mental heath staff and others to design mental health services together.”

Falkirk was chosen as one of only two children’s partnerships in Scotland to be part of an improvement project with Scottish Government and Healthcare Improvement Scotland.

People can call (01324) 670067 for more information on the summer counselling.

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