New mental health support for young people in Reading

Primary interest
Families and Parenting

No5 Young People is providing two new ways for young people to talk about their mental health worries and receive help during this difficult time. One is driven by their young ambassadors who have volunteered to answer mental health-related questions via video and the other is a new helpline offering support from a qualified counsellor.

New mental health helpline

Alyson Brickley, Director at No 5 Young People said:

The No5 Young People’s mental health helpline has been created to provide telephone support from qualified young people’s counsellors. Knowing the additional strain of coronavirus on young people’s wellbeing and mental health, we wanted to do something to help those in our local community. Young people from 11-25 years of age can access this free helpline and receive a call from a counsellor trained to help young people.


Social distancing, self-isolation, being unable to see friends and family and unable to attend school, and fears around the virus, can make young people anxious and distance themselves. Talking to someone who won’t judge you about how you’re feeling is in itself helpful. Our trained counsellors can also offer practical advice over the phone.

Accessing the helpline
  • Simply text TALK followed by your first name and postcode to 07786 202430 to request a phone call from one of our trained counsellors.
  • The support line is open from 5-8pm, Monday to Friday.
  • The No5 helpline is not a crisis line. If you are in crisis please contact the Samaritans 24/7 phone line on 116 123.
  • A counsellor will call you back to offer support – our hope will be to respond later the same day, but depending on demand it may be the following day.
  • Calls will last up to 30 minutes.
  • This service is not counselling, but an opportunity to get support from qualified young people’s counsellors.
No5 Young Ambassadors are sharing their tips

No5 Young Ambassadors are also answering mental health-related questions posted to them by other young people every Thursday by video. Young people asking questions will not be named in the video answers. You can ask questions through social media using #AsktheYAs. Or you can direct message No5 who will pass on your question and a Young Ambassador will answer it the following Thursday in a video post shared through social media. Carly Newman, Operations and Relationships Manager at No5 explained:

No5 Ambassadors wanted to do something to help young people during coronavirus. They suggested an opportunity to share their experiences and answer questions via video. We jumped at the chance! Please come forward with your questions. These could be around feeling anxious, low self-esteem, loneliness or perhaps motivation. Our Young Ambassadors want to share what has worked for them so get in touch via Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram using #AsktheYAs or direct message.

The Young Ambassadors have been managing a daily prompt under hashtag #MakeItForMay. Posting a different theme every day on No5’s social media platforms to encourage young people to be creative. Themes have included ‘bloom’, ‘newspaper’ and ‘reborn’. Abbie, the lead Young Ambassador, talked about why she wanted to get involved:

I think it’s important for young people to be creating content for other young people as so much of what we consume is made by adults who grew up in a different world to us. I’m excited to be involved as I’m very passionate about supporting young people in my local community and to be building my creative skills alongside this!

Further information