Young people and key stakeholders gathered at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Letterkenny on the 8th of May to discuss the mental health services in the CHO 1 area.
The event was held with an aim to engage with young people, HSE staff, community and voluntary groups working with young people and to discuss services in the CHO 1 area and to inform the CHO 1 Mental Health Services Reform funding application to Genio.
Rural access and early intervention were among the issues identified as key priorities locally.
Grace Diver, 20, who is from Moville, Co. Donegal is a youth advocate from the Rural Resource Centre.
Grace spoke at a conference last year in the Radisson Blu Hotel about her own mental health issues and the services and has since partnered with the HSE to make a change in the services for young people.
Grace shared her views on what needs to be done to improve the services and wellbeing of young people in Donegal, “I’m from east Inishowen myself so the services are quite far away for young people and they aren’t easily accessed and there’s the lack of transport. So what I would like to see is the services coming out into the small communities and into the small areas to give better access and better support for young people. I think it would make a massive difference.”
The event had a lot of people giving their ideas and thoughts on what can be done in the plans ahead for the future of the youth that are struggling with their mental health and who need more accessible care.
When asked about her thoughts on the event, Grace said, “This is the second conference now I’ve been with other young people and other opinions and things like that. We have definitely come a long way with the HSE and we can start to see things moving and things start changing so it’s just about getting there and achieving that.”
One main strategy that is trying to be fully implemented is early intervention so that young people can get the help they need at an earlier age rather than later on in life when the issue has grown.
Grace also shared her thoughts on this strategy to combat mental health: “Early intervention is the key to stopping people before it gets too far and then they need more help whereas if we had early intervention maybe all people need is one to one support and just learning how to look after themselves and self-help and self-care. Then there is the need, if it needs to go further, for young people if they are suffering more than intended but one to one support and just having someone there would be a big step.”
Rosaleen Keenan who is the Senior Manager Performance and Service Innovation, CHO 1 Mental Health Services commented, “Today’s event, based on meaningful engagement, will enable a collective approach to the development of youth mental health services with young people and key stakeholders.”Tags: