A new project to provide information for young people in the Western Trust area who require support to deal with mental health issues has been launched.
The Young Minds Matter initiative has been developed by the Western Trust Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) and Voice of Young People in Care (VOYPIC).
Young people themselves joined CAMHS staff and VOYPIC to co-produce a colourful, child friendly range of information materials including a DVD, information leaflet and art wall displays which explains to families and young people what CAMHS do, where to find them and what to expect when they become involved with the CAMHS Service.
The resource materials will be distributed to schools, colleges, GPs practices, leisure facilities, community and voluntary groups across the Western Trust area over the coming months.
They will be available on the Western Trust’s website to ensure easy access to all young people and families who have been referred to CAMHS.
Dr Anne Kilgallen, Western Trust Chief Executive officially launched the CAMHS resources on Friday.
Dr Kilgallen said the project was an “excellent example of what can be achieved through collaborative working between staff and our young people”.
“Today’s event demonstrates the strong partnership between CAMHs staff, other agencies in particular VOYPIC, young people and parents through the work of the CAMHS User Forum. These wonderful resources show how our staff continue to strive to make improvements to our services by listening to service users on what changes are needed through the eyes and voices of young people who have direct experience of the journey themselves.”
Dr Kilgallen continued: “I would like to pay tribute to everyone involved in this project over the past year. This is a wonderful opportunity for us to come together from across many services and agencies to celebrate these collective achievements and an excellent example of how well we work when we work together for the benefit of our young people and their parents/carers.”
Deirdre McGrenaghan, Western Trust Head of Service (CAMHS) and chair of the WHSCT CAMHS User Forum Deirdre said: “The CAMHS User Forum brings together CAMHS staff, other organisations, young people and parents who have used our service. Today’s event is a celebration of the great work done by the forum over the years and particularly the wonderful creativity of our young people who have experienced the CAMHS journey.”
Deirdre continued: “I would like to thank everyone involved for their hard work and dedication to this project, we are very proud of their achievements – well done!”
Caoimhe Coyle, Western Team Leader, Voice Of Young People In Care said: “We are delighted to be involved with the launch of the new information leaflet and animation resources. Over the past year we have worked in partnership with young people and the CAMHS user forum to develop this new range of creative products for young people. The resources are accessible, informative and explain why young people might need support from CAMHS, what that support might look like and how it can help. The young people involved wanted to ‘Break the Stigma’ around mental health and used their own experiences of CAMHS to design these resources.