A new website is being launched to help Swansea Bay’s children and young people explore their mental health and wellbeing, which may have suffered during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The site, called tidyMinds, has been set up to help those aged 12 to 25 years old understand the way they are feeling and give information about where to get advice and support.
This new resource is part of Swansea Bay University Health Board’s (SBUHB) Children and Young People’s Emotional and Mental Health Delivery Plan, which looks at how people can work together to improve the emotional and mental health of children and young people.
The launch follows research by Swansea Council for Voluntary Service (SCVS), which identified a need for such a resource for young people in Swansea Bay, a fact made more pressing by the Covid-19 pandemic, as current information available on existing services can be difficult to navigate.
SBUHB’s Youth Board, which came up with the name tidyMinds, was also consulted.
Sian Harrop-Griffiths, SBUHB’s Director of Strategy, said: “The pandemic has seen an increase in the number of children and young people facing challenges with their mental health and emotional wellbeing, and this will support those who are seeking to understand their feelings, and find support.
“The aim is to provide a resource for children, young people and their families that is secure and reliable, which provides consistent and up-to-date advice for them to identify the support they require in relation to their mental health and emotional wellbeing including anxiety, low mood, anger and low self-esteem.”
The website is not designed to diagnose emotional problems or mental health conditions and those running the site cannot respond to enquiries from individuals relating to their health – anyone requiring urgent support is encouraged to call ChildLine on 0800 11 111 or The Samaritans if over 19 on 116 123.
Earlier this year, Swansea Bay UHB also commissioned an online counselling service, called Kooth, for children and young people in Swansea Bay. Kooth is available for young people aged 11-18 can be accessed here.
The tidyMinds website is a collaborative multi-agency undertaking between SBUHB, Swansea and Neath Port Talbot local authorities, Swansea Parent Carer Forum, and Swansea and Neath Port Talbot Councils for Voluntary Service.
SBUHB Chief Executive Officer, Mark Hackett, said: “The tidyMinds website is an excellent example of collaboration between the services and multi-agencies that support children and young people.
“Through improving access to this type of information, we hope to increase the mental health provision for young people and their families, and assist the professionals working to support them.”
Emma Woollett, SBUHB Chair, said: “This project is most welcome, particularly at a time when children and young people have so many challenges to face. We understand, as a health board, that whilst there are services that can provide support, it isn’t always an easy task to find them.
“We hope that tidyMinds will prove to be an invaluable first port of call to those seeking support.”
Amanda Carr, Swansea Council for Voluntary Service Director, said: “The tidyMinds website provides a one-stop shop to access self-help tools and information that young people, their parents and carers can use to support emotional health and wellbeing.
“Created through a strong partnership of statutory and third sector partners the resources can also be accessed by professionals working across partners’ agencies.
“We hope that it will increase understanding of the services that exist to support young people with their mental health and wellbeing.”
The new website can be viewed at www.tidyminds.org.uk