New Research Launched: ‘Youth Mentoring as a Support for Young People in CAMHS’

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Sarah November 25, 2022

New Research Launched: 'Youth Mentoring as a Support for Young People in CAMHS' 

Foróige are delighted to launch ‘Youth Mentoring as a Support for Young People in CAMHS - An Exploratory Study’ by Dr Charlotte Silke and Dr Bernadine Brady, UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre, University of Galway.

This new research focuses on the experiences of young people who participate in our Big Brother Big Sister programme while also involved in CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services). The findings suggest that there are lots of benefits to young people who take part in our Big Brother Big Sister programme - including improved coping & wellbeing, more confidence, stronger self-identity and more.

Download and read the full report here.

At the launch event on 24/11/2022, we were thrilled to be joined by TDs, Senators, colleagues from the HSE and CAMHS as well as our friends from the Children’s Rights Alliance, Mental Health Reform, the Board of Foróige, Big Brother Big Sister staff, parents, mentors, young people and more. 

The main findings on the benefits for the young people involved with the BBBS-CAMHS partnership are:

  • Improved Relationships and Social Skills - “I think I have changed in my trust and friendships… I can definitely trust more people” – Young Person
  • Greater Functioning and Independence - “They do exceptional work in moving young people on in getting back into being able to function in their life the way most young people do” – CAMHS Staff
  • More Confidence - “[BBBS] boosted him, boosted his confidence and made him feel like that he was a nice person and a good person and worth getting to know” – Parent
  • Enhanced Mood and Positive Affect - “They’re invaluable in service really, in helping young people from a mental health perspective” – CAMHS Staff
  • Improved Coping and Wellbeing - “It has given her a little bit more resilience” – Parent
  • Stronger Self-Identity - “That relationship as I say is incredibly positive…it has really built her up as a person” – Parent
  • Increased Engagement - “I think that the skills that they build on through the mentoring programme are transferable so they transfer to school, into their friendships, making new friendships” – CAMHS Staff.

Mary Butler T.D., Minister of State for Mental Health and Older People launched the research, saying “Today’s report is most timely and welcome, and I thank everyone involved for their assistance to help identify improved options around mentoring for young people involved with CAMHS. The Big Brother Big Sister programme plays an important role in our communities and I look forward to seeing the impact of further cooperation between Foróige and HSE CAMHS. Developing all aspects of mental health care remains a priority for me, and for Government. We are seeing good progress being made on implementation of Sharing the Vision, underpinned by the record funding for mental health and suicide prevention given in the recent Budget.”

Barbara Daly, Chairperson of Foróige, closed the launch by saying “Behind each of these findings is an individual young person, with an individual story and an individual struggle. These young people are at the heart of what Foróige and the Big Brother Big Sister Programme are all about. We provide them with support, based on their individual needs and challenges, in a way that is both practical and powerful. I'm very grateful to Dr. Charlotte Silke and the team in the UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre, University of Galway for their hard work and dedication to this research and we are delighted to continue to partner with CAMHS in the support of young people.”

Download and read 'Youth Mentoring as a Supportive Resource for Young People in CAMHS' here.