News 9 April

Timely digital mental health service for 11-18 year olds launches in Herefordshire amidst the coronavirus outbreak

Children and Young People across Herefordshire now have access to Kooth.com. The service will provide young people in Herefordshire with safe, free and anonymous online mental health support. The service does not have any waiting lists or thresholds and does not require any referrals to be used by a young person and is free at the point of use. Kooth.com is provided by XenZone, the UK’s leading experts in digital mental health and is available to over 5m children and young people across England. 

Kooth which is accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), allows children and young people to chat to a qualified counsellor when they need to. They can do this through an instant messaging via an online drop-in session or a booked session. Young people using the service are also encouraged to read and write useful articles, participate in moderated online forums and keep track of their mental health through online journals and goal trackers. 

The Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust has commissioned Kooth as part of The Children and Young People’s Plan which is overseen by the Herefordshire Children and Young People’s Partnership (CYPP). The plan contributes to delivering the health and wellbeing strategy for the trust which recognises children and young people may benefit from preventive mental health support. 

Elaine Cook-Tippins, Community Services Manager for Children and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) in Herefordshire said, “We’re delighted to add Kooth to the services and resources available to support children and young people in Herefordshire with their emotional well-being. Young people in the county can now use Kooth to access digital resources and online support to help them maintain their well-being and look after their mental health, particularly during this challenging and unprecedented time” 

Dr Lynne Green, XenZone’s Chief Clinical Officer added, “Children and young people across the Worcestershire and Herefordshire areas can now benefit from being part of a safe, moderated online community, allowing them access support from professionals as well as their peers. Our qualified counsellors are on hand to support them through challenging and uncertain times such as these. We are seeing an increasing need for our service and a change in presenting issues from Children and Young People as they struggle to adapt to loneliness and isolation and home relationships”

About Worcestershire Health & Care NHS Trust 

Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust provide services for people of all ages, across a range of settings, experiencing both physical and/or mental health conditions. Since April 2020, they are the main providers of mental health and learning disability services in Herefordshire and Worcestershire, and continue to provide community hospitals and community based nursing and therapy to the population of Worcestershire.