Best For You


Mental health support for young people in Harrow

Lots of different services and organisations in Harrow offer support for young people. This page contains information about all of the different ways to get support.

 

If you need urgent help, for example because you’re in crisis:

Two young people, one wearing a beanie and one with shoulder-length hair. Text reads ‘It’s OK to say that you’re not OK’. One of the people has a skateboard, the other has lines around their head with the words ‘anxious’ and ‘sad’.

 

How to use this page

 

This page has a lot of information about different ways to access mental health support. It is split into different sections:

 

Accessing NHS mental health support 

For information about NHS mental health services in Harrow.

 

Other mental health support

For information about non-NHS organisations who offer free mental health support for young people in Harrow.

 

Support for specific things

For organisations that are experts at supporting young people in specific things, for example, supporting young people who have experienced bereavements or who are LGBTQ+ or seeking asylum.

 

Youth groups and other activities

Because we know that spending time with other people doing things you enjoy is good for your mental health.

 

Accessing NHS mental health support

 

You can make an appointment with your GP to talk about mental health. GP stands for ‘general practitioner’ – they’re doctors who have done extra training to be able to treat common medical conditions and refer people to other services for more specialist treatment or support. You can find out more about GPs (and how to register with one) on the NHS website.

 

Your GP can refer you to Harrow CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services).

As well as the Core CAMHS Team, you might be able to see people from:

The Central and North West London Community Eating Disorder Service for Children and Young People

This service is for young people aged 17 or under who have an eating disorder (or who think they might have an eating disorder). Your GP can refer you to this service; you can also self-refer by calling them. You can find out more on the CNWL website.

The Harrow and Hillingdon Early Intervention Service

This service is for people between the ages of 14 and 35 who are experiencing their first episode of psychosis. Your GP needs to refer you to this service. You can find out more about the Harrow and Hillingdon Early Intervention Service on the CNWL website.

 

Other mental health support

 

Counselling at The Mix (UK wide service)

The Mix offers up to eight sessions of free phone or online counselling to young people living in the UK who are aged 25 and under. You can get in touch yourself using a form on their website. Find out more about counselling at The Mix on their website.

Mentoring at the Julian Campbell Foundation

The Julian Campbell Foundation offers a mentoring programme for young people aged between 11 and 25 who are struggling to manage their mood or need some extra support to deal with emotional or stressful situations. You don’t need a diagnosis to be part of the mentoring programme. You can get in touch yourself by emailing them.

Find out more about the Julian Campbell Foundation on their website.

Creative arts through Arts for Life Project

Arts For Life Project is based on the Harrow and Hillingdon border, but accepts referrals from throughout London and surrounding areas.

Arts for Life Project offer one-to-one, person-centred therapeutic support for young people aged between 6 and 25. Anyone aged 16 and above can refer a young person through an online form.

Creative Crew is a weekly project for young people aged 6 and above who love the arts and are able to engage in a group setting. It allows young people to engage with the therapeutic power of the arts within a group. Through fun, relaxed activities, young people develop emotional intelligence and strengthen mental health. Anyone aged 16 and above can refer a young person through an online form.

Skills For Life is a course-based programme that helps young people aged 6 to 25 develop essential life skills, including technical, physical, wellbeing, and communication skills. Young people are put into suitable groups for the programme. Anyone aged 16 and above can refer a young person through an online form.

Together Thrive uses three different types of support to help young people aged 8 and above with complex challenges (including mental health concerns) progress back into society. It includes support at home, clinical therapeutic support, and mentor support. Young people aged 14 and above can refer themselves through the online form; parents and professionals can also refer through the same form.

The project also has programmes for parents and carers.

Find out more about Arts For Life Project on their website.

Therapeutic interventions through Harrow Horizons

Harrow Horizons is a mental health and wellbeing service for children and young people (aged up to 18, or up to 25 if they have an Education, Health and Care plan) who live or have a GP in Harrow. They support young people who don’t meet the criteria for specialist CAMHS intervention.

They can help with lots of different things, including mild to moderate emotional and behavioural disorders, mild to moderate self-harm, body image, compulsive behavioural patterns, and some eating issues. These are just some examples: you can see the full list on their website.

They can’t help young people who need long term therapy or drug-based therapy; young people with severe eating disorders, psychosis, or personality disorders; or young people who are in crisis or needing emergency support.

Young people can refer themselves. Parents, carers, and professionals can also refer young people by email, phone, or face-to-face.

Find out more about Harrow Horizons one the Barnardos website.

Support from HeadsUp Harrow

HeadsUp Harrow is a partnership of five local charities. It offers mental health services to young people across Harrow who face additional barriers to support.

Their services include support from therapists and counsellors, peer support, mentoring, activities, and courses.

Their services are available for young people aged 11 to 25 who live or go to school in Harrow and:

  • have a diagnosis of ADHD or autism
  • are LGBTQ+ or questioning their sexuality and/or gender
  • are from a refugee or asylum-seeking family (or are an unaccompanied minor)
  • self-harm or have experience of sexual exploitation, abuse, or neglect

You can refer yourself or a professional (like a teacher or doctor) can refer you on the Mind in Harrow website.

Find out more about HeadsUp Harrow on the Mind in Harrow website. 

Mentoring through Ignite Youth

Ignite Youth offer 1:1 and small ground mentoring to young people who live in Harrow. They teach young people skills to cope with stress, support them to set goals, and help them to make changes in their lives.

They accept referrals from social workers, teachers, and other youth work practitioners.

Find out more about mentoring on the Ignite Youth website.

Support through The Wïsh Centre for young people who self-harm

The Wïsh Centre offers therapy to children and young people aged between 12 and 25 (who live, work, or go to school or college in Harrow) who are self-harming or have experiences sexual exploitation of violence.

They also run self-harm peer support groups for young people aged between 13 and 16. The group supports young people so they want to (and are able to) stop self-harming.

They also run an arts based therapy group for young people aged between 16 and 25 and offer four to six sessions with an emotional mental health practitioner.

Parents and carers, teachers, medical professionals, and social workers can refer young people. Young people aged 14 or over can also refer themselves.

The Wïsh Centre do not accept referrals if young people are using class A drugs or have a recent history of violence or exploitation of others. They risk assess referrals if young people have made a recent suicide attempt.

Find out more about The Wïsh Centre and how to refer people.

 

Support for specific topics

 

ADHD and autism

Centre for ADHD & Autism Support (for young people diagnosed with ADHD or autism)

Young people aged between 11 (in high school) and 25 with a diagnosis of ADHD or autism can access individual support in person, or over email, phone, or webchat. Counselling is also available if the young person meets the referral criteria.

Girls Group is for young women aged between 11 (in high school) and 16 with a diagnosis of ADHD or autism can access this group, which has discussion groups and creative activities to help girls understand their diagnosis and learn strategies to help them manage. 

WhyTry is a 10-week CBT-based course that supports young people in areas such as peer pressure, self-esteem, and understanding decisions and consequences. CALMS is a 6-week programme that helps young people explore their differences and learn to see the positives in an autism or ADHD diagnosis.

There is also a Creative Club, Young Persons Film Club, and Lego Therapy, as well as support for siblings and parents.

You can find out more and contact the Centre for ADHD & Autism Support about services through their website.

Kids Can Achieve (for disabled young people and their families)

Kids Can Achieve offer after school and holiday activities and 1:1 activities for disabled young people.

They also have a family service, where workers provide information, signposting, and referrals. Kids Can Achieve offer counselling and creative therapy for people who have autism, ADHD, or a learning disability (and their family members).

Find out more on the Kids Can Achieve website.

Bereavement

Grief Encounter (bereavement)

Grief Encounter offer up to 30 one to one weekly counselling sessions. The sessions can be at school, online, or at their centre in North London (NW7). They do not accept referrals for grandparent-related bereavement(s) unless the grandparent who died was a primary caregiver. You can get in touch about counselling yourself through an online form.

They also offer workshops, a residential retreat, fun days, and a choir. You can contact them about these by email.

Grief Encounter have a confidential phone helpline and online chat that is open from 9am to 9pm on weekdays.

Find out more about Grief Encounter on their website.

Winston’s Wish (bereavement – UK wide service)

Winston’s Wish offer one-off or ongoing advice, guidance, and bereavement support for young people up to the age of 25 (and their families). They have a helpline, which is open between 9am and 5pm on weekdays.

They also have online peer support groups (for young people aged between 7 and 12, for young people aged between 13 and 17, and for young people aged between 18 and 25, as well as for parents and carers), which are overseen by Bereavement Support Practitioners. They’re informal; young people can just go to one or keep going every month. You can get in touch and book a space on these yourself through the Winston’s Wish website.

Winston’s Wish also run drop-in sessions that give families and professionals the chance to to find out more about their services. These were suspended due to COVID but are beginning to restart. You can find details on the Winston’s Wish website.

Bereavement Care (for people who have experienced bereavement)

Bereavement care offer a range of serviced for children, young people, and adults. They have a free visiting scheme where people can talk in confidence with a trained volunteer, support programme for children and young people, and friendly support groups.

Find out more about Bereavement Care on their website.

Bullying

Zap through Kidscape (for young people aged 9 to 16 who have experienced bullying)
ZAP is a free workshop for children and young people aged between 9 and 16 who have been affected by bullying. ZAP aims to boost confidence and self-esteem and give young people assertiveness skills.  
 
The workshops are currently taking place online. A young person’s parent or carer needs to attend with them; there is a separate workshop for parents and carers. 
 

Criminal exploitation and county lines

St Giles Trust (for young people who are criminally exploited; have families in need of support with poverty, housing, gang involvement, or substance misuse; or have a parent in prison – UK wide service)

St Giles Trust offer community-based support for young people who are involved in gangs, serious violence, and offending. They also have services for children who have a parent in prison, for families affected by gangs, and for families experiencing poverty.

You can get in touch yourself by filling out a form on the St Giles Trust website.

Rescue and Response (for young people involved in or affected by county line activity)

Rescue and Response is delivered in partnership between four organisations and is funded across London by the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime.

It involves one to one support, specialist support for young women, and family and housing support. The service includes a structured programme around topics like healthy relationships, violence against women and girls, identity and equality, trama, and safety planning. Professionals can refer through an online form.

Find out more about Rescue and Response on the Abianda website.

Young Women’s Service at Womens and Girls Network (for young women* who have experienced or are at risk of gendered violence)

This service is for young women aged between 11 and 18 (up to 21 for care leavers) who have experienced (or are at risk of) any form of gendered violence, including domestic violence, sexual violence, child sexual exploitation, gang associated violence, forced marriage, and so on.

The service welcomes trans and intersex young women. It also welcomes non-binary young people who feel the service would best meet their needs and experiences.

They offer advocacy, group work, and counselling.

Find out more about Women and Girls Network.

Only Connect (for people who have been released from prison)

Only Connect offer keyword support to people who are released from prison to help make the transition of leaving prison as smooth as possible. They support people with things like employment, housing, and opportunities to help them remain crime-free.

Find out more about Only Connect.

London Gang Exit (for young people who are affected, associated, or affiliated with gang related issues or serious youth violence)

This service is designed to complement existing local services and fill gaps in provision. It provides traditional one-to-one, confidential support to young people aged between 16 and 24 who are associated with or involved in gangs and are at significant risk of harm from gang activity, or pose risk to themselves or others. They consider referrals outside the age range on a case-by-case basis. 

LGE empowers young people to move away from gang lifestyles. Young people must be motivated to end their gang involvement and willing to work with the service. 

Young people can refer themselves. Family members, carers, friends, and other organisations can also refer young people. 

Find out more about London Gang Exit.

Ignite Youth (for young people leaving prison, who are at-risk of becoming involved in gang activity or re-offending)

Ignite Youth provide support and opportunities for these young people in Harrow.

Visit the Ignite Youth website to find out how to get in touch about this support.

Disability

Kids Can Achieve (for disabled young people and their families)

Kids Can Achieve offer after school and holiday activities and 1:1 activities for disabled young people.

They also have a family service, where workers provide information, signposting, and referrals. Kids Can Achieve offer counselling and creative therapy for people who have autism, ADHD, or a learning disability (and their family members).

Find out more on the Kids Can Achieve website.

Education and employment

Spear Programme (for 16 to 24 year olds not in education, employment, or training)

The Spear Programme is for young people aged 16 to 24 who need help to start their career and find long-term employment. This includes young people struggling with low confidence or mental health difficulties, as well as young people with criminal records or no qualifiations.

The six-week-long programme involves coaching to overcome challenging attitudes and behaviours, practical training (such as CV writing and pretend interviews), and ongoing support for a year.

You can find out more about the Spear Programme and register your interest on their website.

Gambling

GamCare Young People’s Service (gambling – UK wide service)

GamCare’s Young People’s Service can support anyone in the UK aged 18 and under. They can support people who are experiencing harm (or at risk of experiencing harm) because of gambling – this includes young people who are gambling themselves and young people who are affected by someone else’s gambling.

They provide information, advice, and guidance; self-help tools; and interventions. You can get in touch yourself by phone, email, or the form on their website.

Find out more on the GamCare website.

LGBTQ+

Mosaic LGBT+ young persons’ trust (for people who are LGBTQ+)

Mosaic run a weekly youth club for LGBTQ+ people aged 18 and under. Part of this is a Culture Club, with discounted or free trips that give young people the chance to explore their identity or learn about LGBT+ culture. They also offer retreats.

Young people can talk to mentors: older LGBT+ people with similar lived experiences. Mentoring helps you to better manage practical issues (like relationships, family, or school). You do not have to be part of Youth Club to speak to a mentor, and you do not need permission from a parent or carer.

Mosaic also offer online counselling with counsellors who identify as LGBT+. Counselling helps you understand your emotions and experiences, and teaches you about tools and strategies that can help you manage.

You can get in touch yourself through a form on their website, or you can contact them by email or phone. Mosaic make sure that financial difficulties never block access to their services.

Find out more on their website.

The Proud Trust (for people who are LGBTQ+ – UK wide service)

The Proud Trust is based in Manchester but has an online web chat. You can also use their website to find your nearest LGBT+ Youth Group.

Find out more on the Proud Trust website.

Migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers

Paiwand (for migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers)

Paiwand provides social opportunities and sports activities for young people. They understand that it can be tricky to arrive in the UK.

Paiwand also offers mentoring for refugees and asylum seekers aged between 11 and 18. They help young people to learn, find work, and make friends in the local area while improving their mental health and learning skills.

Paiwand offers culturally sensitive counselling, including talking therapies in Dari, Farsi, Pashtu, and English. Right now (May 2022), referrals are only open for young people aged between 12 and 25 who have a refugee background and live, work, or study in Harrow. You can self-refer or someone else can refer you.

Find out more about Paiwand’s services and refer yourself on their website. 

Young Roots (for refugees and asylum seekers)

Young Roots supports refugees and asylum seekers in Brent* who are aged between 11 and 25.  They have some groups for young women only to provide a safe space for those who feel less comfortable accessing mixed-gender activities.

They run an advice and support hub with youth and sporting activities alongside one to one casework support, access to legal advice, and access to counselling. They also offer support with English language skills and trips for young refugees.

You can get in touch yourself through a form on their website. You can also email or phone them. Find out more about Young Roots on their website.

* and neighbouring boroughs

Freedom From Torture (for survivors of torture – UK wide service)

Freedom From Torture offers trauma-focused therapy to help with the effects of trauma, including complex trauma, depression, and other mental health needs. They also offer further services, including creative group activities, social groups, and physical therapy to help survivors rebuild their lives. They offer practical advice for survivors who are seeking asylum.

You can get in touch yourself by filling out a form on the Freedom from Torture website.

Sexual health

North West London Sexual Health and Contraception Services

This NHS service provides testing for STIs, post-exposure prophylaxis against HIV (PEP), pre-exposure prophylaxis against HIV (PrEP), pregnancy testing, contraception, emergency contraception, and HIV care.

Find out more about sexual health and contraception services (including Caryl Thomas Clinic in Wealdstone) on their website.

Substance misuse

St Giles Trust (for young people who are criminally exploited; have families in need of support with poverty, housing, gang involvement, or substance misuse; or have a parent in prison – UK wide service)

St Giles Trust offer community-based support for young people who are involved in gangs, serious violence, and offending. They also have services for children who have a parent in prison, for families affected by gangs, and for families experiencing poverty.

You can get in touch yourself by filling out a form on the St Giles Trust website.

Compass Harrow (drugs and alcohol / substance misuse)

Compass Harrow work with children and young people who need support around their own or another person’s drug or alcohol use. They accept referrals for young people under 18 (and can then work with young people until they turn 24).

You can get in touch through their referral form, by calling them, or by dropping into their hub during opening hours.

Find out more about Compass Harrow on their website.

Violence and abuse

Young Women’s Service at Womens and Girls Network (for young women* who have experienced or are at risk of gendered violence)

This service is for young women aged between 11 and 18 (up to 21 for care leavers) who have experienced (or are at risk of) any form of gendered violence, including domestic violence, sexual violence, child sexual exploitation, gang associated violence, forced marriage, and so on.

The service welcomes trans and intersex young women. It also welcomes non-binary young people who feel the service would best meet their needs and experiences.

They offer advocacy, group work, and counselling.

Find out more about Women and Girls Network.

CouRAGEus Project (for Black and Minoritised young women* who have experienced (or are at risk of) any form of gendered violence)

This project offers specialist advocacy support and counselling for Black and Minoritised young women* who have experienced (or are at risk of) any form of gendered violence, including domestic violence, sexual violence, child sexual exploitation, gang associated violence, forced marriage, and so on.

* This is defined as including BME, LGBT+ and Disabled young women. They welcome trans and intersex young women. They also welcome non-binary young people who feel the service would best meet their needs and experiences.

Find out more about CouRAGEus.

Solace Children’s Creative Therapies (for young people affected by domestic or sexual violence)

This service offers therapy for young people aged 4 and above. Therapists work with young people with art making, play, drama, and talking as appropriate to help the young person better understand their feelings and improve their self-esteem.

Young people must be living in a safe and stable enough environment – the perpetrator can no longer be living with the family (or in a relationship with the mother or carer) and any contact must be deemed to be safe. 

There is a waiting list for referrals. 

Find out more about Solace Children’s Creative Therapies.

DVIP YUVA (for young people using violence or abuse)

This service offers confidential, one-to-one support for young people aged between 11 and 18 (up to 25 years old for people with additional needs) who use violence or abuse and want to change their behaviour and improve their awareness of healthy communication and relationships.

Parents, carers, and professionals can refer a young person. The organisation prefers referrals from professionals if possible.

Find out more about DVIP YUVA.

Young carers

Harrow Carers (for young carers aged 17 and under)

Harrow carers offers a range of support. They can help your school understand your role and provide practical support and advice, and they also offer outings, activities, and educational events to give young carers a break from their role and introduce them to others. They can provide 1 to 1 support and family support too.

You can get in touch by calling or emailing them.

Find out more about Harrow Carers’ support for young carers on their website.

Honeypot (for young carers aged 5 to 12 – UK wide service)

Honeypot offer a range of services to support young carers aged between 5 and 12, including respite breaks for children, social and emotional active learning breaks, online workshops, face-to-face workshops, and financial support through a wellbeing fund. 

Find out more on the Honeypot website.

Other

St Giles Trust (for young people who are criminally exploited; have families in need of support with poverty, housing, gang involvement, or substance misuse; or have a parent in prison – UK wide service)

St Giles Trust offer community-based support for young people who are involved in gangs, serious violence, and offending. They also have services for children who have a parent in prison, for families affected by gangs, and for families experiencing poverty.

You can get in touch yourself by filling out a form on the St Giles Trust website.

Freedom From Torture (for survivors of torture – UK wide service)

Freedom From Torture offers trauma-focused therapy to help with the effects of trauma, including complex trauma, depression, and other mental health needs. They also offer further services, including creative group activities, social groups, and physical therapy to help survivors rebuild their lives. They offer practical advice for survivors who are seeking asylum.

You can get in touch yourself by filling out a form on the Freedom from Torture website.

A phone charging on the floor. It’s pastel-coloured screensaver says ‘You won’t feel like this forever’. A notebook next to the phone says ‘Best For You’ on the cover.

 

Youth groups and other activities

 

Ignite Youth (youth group)

Ignite Youth offer activities such as music, boxing, football, and multi-sports. You need to book a place for some sessions, so get in touch before you turn up.

Find out more about activities on the Ignite Youth website.

Young Harrow Foundation (website with signposting to activities)

You can use the Young Harrow Foundation’s website to find activities including art and creative activities, cultural activities, and sport or physical activities. You can also search for uniformed youth groups (like Scouts and Guides) and youth clubs.

Find activities on the Young Harrow Foundation website.

Harrow Youth Stop (careers guidance for unemployed young people)

Harrow Youth Stop provides free careers information, advice, guidance, and support services for unemployed young people aged between 16 and 19 (up to 24 years old for those with special educational needs). They offer one-to-one support.

Find out more about harrow Youth Stop on their website.

A comic titled ‘bottling up your feelings isn’t good for you’. Panel one: one bottle asks another if they’re alright – the bottle says ‘well... no’. The first bottle is thinking ‘I’m so worried about them’ and the second bottle is thinking ‘I could try and open up about how I feel...’. In the final panel, both bottles have open lids – they’re smiling and there’s confetti and stars around them.