The Brent Centre for Young People helps young people aged 11-21 with emotional and mental health problems, by providing a therapeutic space for them to think and talk about their worries, and help them move forward. Please read on for excerpts from the Brent Centre’s 2018 – 2019 report of progress so far, in order to hear in their own words how they are moving forward with their funding and making an impact in the community. Don’t miss the inspiring story at the end, of YP2 and her transition to safety, education and paid employment.
Irish Mental Health Support and Liaison Project
The Irish Youth Foundation (UK) grant of £4,000 has enabled us to maintain our Irish Project and the post of Mental Health Support and Liaison Officer. It has also helped us continue to provide Irish young people with our core services of Adolescent Exploratory Therapy and Psychotherapy and to increase access in outreach locations.
Work with young Irish people has also taken place in 4 schools and at Brent Youth Offending service. Mental Health continues to be one of the leading causes of morbidity in Brent, and Brent is still home to the highest number and proportion of Irish residents in London, as well as home to Lynton Close, the fourth largest Traveller site in London.
Aims and Objectives of the Irish Mental Health Support and Liaison Project
The aims of our Irish Mental Health Support and Liaison Project have remained constant as they continue to be highly relevant to the needs of young Irish People in our community:
– To improve the mental health of young people who are Irish or of Irish descent
– To build upon our existing psychotherapy provision and Irish project. We offer short and long-term individual psychotherapy, parent and family support
– To meet practical support needs of young people
– To raise the profile of the needs of Irish young people
– To further our understanding and sensitivity to intercultural work and better meet the needs of our community
– To support more young Irish people to access our in-house and outreach services
Excellent results for young people in therapy
Young Person 2 (YP2): a path to safety, finishing her studies and full-time employment
YP 2 is a young woman of Irish heritage. YP 2 was referred to the Irish Officer as she wanted to leave home but was studying and earning very little. During the work with the Irish Officer it became clear that YP 2 was the victim of abuse. The Irish Officer therefore focused on supporting the young person to develop and maintain their own safety. The Irish Project Officer also supported YP 2 to engage with local domestic violence organisations, the Police, social services and the local authority housing team.
Throughout this YP 2 managed to complete her studies and gain full time employment. With the support of the Irish Officer and YP 2’s progress in therapy- YP 2 was able to move into a refuge and then semi-permanent housing. Despite not being able to visit the Brent Centre due to the risk to her, YP 2 has been able to continue her weekly therapy via phone.
During this reporting period, the work of the Irish Officer has focused on supporting YP 2 to build a relationship with her new key worker and integrate into the community and support services in her new area. This includes ongoing work to identify a new appropriate therapy service. This will provide YP 2 with a supported and sustainable transition and also reduce the risk of YP 2 returning to her family home where she experienced abuse.