Service Update

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Friday 30th June 2023

Isle of Wight Youth Trust experiencing unprecedented demand for its services

After the most challenging of times for us all, the urgent and growing mental health needs of children and young people has been well documented. The Youth Trust, the Island’s largest independent charity dedicated to supporting Island children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing, is experiencing record numbers of referrals for it’s services.

Effective immediately, referrals for young Islanders aged 18-25 seeking one-to-one counselling support will be temporarily paused to enable us  to safely manage our waiting list. Youth Trust support services for those aged 5-17 remain unaffected and those aged 18-25 will still be able to access support from the Youth Trust through their group Wellbeing Programme.

The demand for Youth Trust services in 2023 has been unprecedented, with an average of 132 Island children and young people reaching out to us for support each month – in 2022 the average was 80.

Meghann Ayres, Isle of Wight Youth Trust Clinical Lead explains:

“Pausing referrals for one-to-one counselling support for 18-25-year-olds is not a decision we have taken lightly. We understand the very real challenges our young people are facing, but we have reached a critical juncture where we must ensure we can safely support those waiting to access our services.”

All those aged 18-25 who are already on the Youth Trust waiting list will be contacted directly by a member of the Youth Trust team to discuss the support options available to them. Those aged 18-25 currently in sessions with a member of the Youth Trust team will be unaffected. 

We are absolutely committed to reinstating our 18-25 one-to-one counselling support as soon as possible, further details about our group Wellbeing Programmes can be found on the Youth Trust website, alongside further sources of support for young Islanders including contact details for the Isle-Talk Talking Therapies service, Isorropia Foundation and Kooth.


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For further information please contact Michelle Moorman, Fundraising and Communications Manager: 01983 529569.

Notes for editors

  1. The Isle of Wight Youth Trust is an independent charity which has been supporting and championing the mental health of Island children and young people for 40 years. Offering free, therapeutic counselling and wellbeing services for those aged 5 to 25. Children and young people can contact the Trust directly to access support, they do not need to be referred by a professional.
  2. In the 2022/23 financial year the Youth Trust received 1171 referrals and provided therapeutic support to 811 individuals, approximately 10% of those they support are aged 18-25.


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