Young People in Mind


Young People in Mind had two inter-related aims:

  • To increase access to counselling and other psychological therapies to 16-19 year olds, especially those at high risk of mental health difficulties and at points of transition.
  • To improve integration between voluntary sector YIACS and statutory mental health and other services to improve support for young people.

Run for one year to March 2016, and coinciding with the implementation of local CAMHS transformation planning processes, the project became an important opportunity for the YIACS to be actively involved in improving local mental health services for young people.

Delivered through a consortium of nine YIACS led by Youth Access, Young People in Mind was funded by the Department of Education.  Working together, the Young People in Mind consortium focused on achieving the following:

  • Offering 850 assessments and 4250 sessions of one to one counselling and other psychological therapies in local community-based settings
  • Supporting improvements in referral pathways and assessment processes between YIACS, specialist CAMHS, Adult Mental Health Services (AMHS), Children Services and Education
  • Encouraging better information sharing, with young people’s consent, between YIACS and other local services e.g. CAMHS, Education, Children's services.
  • Helping reduce the risk of young people falling through service gaps and failing to access early help by formalising transition arrangements between YIACS, CAMHS and AMHS
  • Encouraging more joint commissioning between CAMHS and AMHS to improve YIACS’ capacity to work across age boundaries


  • 1092 young people were offered and took up an assessment between 1st April 2015 and 26th February 2016
  • 77% of these 1092 young were assessed as having one or more vulnerability factors in their lives. 41% had two or more risk factors.
  • Depression, anxiety and low self-esteem were the top presenting issues at assessment.
  • 25% of the young people presented with self-harm and 20% of the young people presented with suicidal thoughts.
  • Following an assessment, the majority of young people (86%) chose, and were offered, one to one counselling or other psychological support from the YIACS.
  • At the cut off point for data submission, 83% of young people offered help following assessment were stated as achieving a ‘good outcome’
  • Of the 9 YIACS involved in Young People in Mind, 8 were specifically named in their local CAMHS transformation plan.
  • Since the project ended all 9 YIACS have increased their access to local funding and continue to offer services to young people.