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Dumfries & Galloway Council are committed to supporting our young people to deal with the impacts of COVID-19, Our Council has invested in setting up a community based young people's mental health support service that is now being delivered within Dumfries & Galloway across all 12 ward areas.

Low Level Mental Health Support in Communities

The Community Mental Health Project is based on a successful two-year 'Youth Information in Schools Project' pilot programme that was delivered from 2018 - 2020 (and has now been extended until July 2023), focussing on low-level mental health support to young people.

This work is targeted at a time when young people's mental health has heightened during the COVID-19 pandemic and additional support is required to reduce the impact on young people and reduce additional pressure being placed on more formal mental health support provided by the NHS. The work is focussed on low level mental health support being offered within communities and online for all Ward areas across Dumfries & Galloway.

In line with Scottish government requirements, all Youth Information Workers delivering the project are qualified to work with children and young people and have successfully completed an accredited counselling skills training course through COSCA (Counselling & Psychotherapy in Scotland).

The young people that this is targeted at may be those who:

  • You have concerns surrounding their well-being including mental and emotional health.
  • Are considered vulnerable (using our professional judgement)
  • Are at risk of offending.
  • Are struggling with a loss/bereavement or significant change.
  • Struggling with low self-esteem or confidence.

Youth Information Workers who can offer:

1-2-1 Support

These support programmes aim to help young people to learn strategies to cope with their difficult feelings and work is focussed on individual needs. These programmes are weekly 45-minute sessions for around 6-12 weeks. Partners can refer a young person for 1-2-1 support using the referral from below. Young people can also self-refer by speaking to a Youth Information Worker.

Group Work

These programmes are designed to focus on young people's overall health and wellbeing with a specific focus on a targeted or identified groups. Programmes are run weekly for 12 weeks and examples of programmes are:

  • Seasons for Growth (Loss and Bereavement)
  • Living Life to the Full (Confidence and Self Esteem)
  • Your Resilience

The group work and issue-based programmes are usually delivered with between 6-10 young people (depending on the venue) and the content of the sessions will be flexible to the needs of each group.

How to make a referral

To refer a young person please use the links below:

Community Based Mental Health Referral Form

For more information, please download a copy of the referral process:

Referral Process (CBMHP) (PDF) [239KB]

Young people may approach the service directly, they may have contact through other projects delivered by the Youth Work Service across Dumfries & Galloway or through other statutory or voluntary services such as Social Work, Youth Justice or Third Sector Organisations.

The project is voluntary for young people to participate in, and referrals should be completed with the young person's consent. A referral may be accepted or signposted elsewhere if it does not meet the criteria.  A number of criteria points for potential referrals have been identified and can be downloaded below.If a young person does not meet the criteria, this will be discussed with the professional or person who made the initial referral.

The 'Community Mental Health project' sits within Dumfries and Galloway Council's Youth Work Service and is part of a wide range of informal community based and school support for young people throughout the region. This is a confidential service for young people.

Further information:

Youth Work Services
Tel: 01387 251322