Jigsaw – providing 1:1 mental health support for young adults

Jigsaw provides a vital service supporting the mental health of young adults aged between 12 – 25 years old. They have a webchat facility providing 1:1 support – here are the details, reproduced from their website.

 

Jigsaw Live Chat is a new way to get support if you’re aged between 12 – 25 years-old. Our trained staff host 1:1 webchats, Monday-Friday from 1-5pm.

Login and talk about what’s on your mind or send us an email anytime.

We accept our final chats 30 minutes before chat closes. If you’d like to chat after this, you can send an email or log in at another time. Register to chat or email with us.

Live chat

What do I need to know?

  • What happens when I request a chat?
  • How do I get the most out of my chat?
  • What do I do if there is a technical difficulty during my session?
  • Is the service confidential?
What happens when I request a chat?

When you request a chat, there will be a text box where you can tell us a little bit about your reason for your visit. We will ask you to fill out a brief questionnaire about how you are doing at the moment. At the start of your chat, our staff member will welcome you, introduce themselves and invite you to say a little more about what you’d like support with.

Can I be anonymous?

You need to register to use this service. When registering you will be asked to provide an email address, a username and some demographic information. You can be as anonymous as you choose. This means you don’t need to provide your first name if you prefer. You can also use an email address that doesn’t identify you (i.e. doesn’t contain your name).

Do I need a referral?

No, you can just log in whenever you like during opening hours. Or send us an email anytime.

How to get the most out of my chat?

Chats sessions will last approximately 40 minutes. To get the most out of your session, we recommend:

  • Using a good internet connection if possible to minimise disruptions
  • Having a think about what it is you most want help with. Your clinician will also help you with this in the session
  • Staying focused on the chat and responding promptly
  • Avoid multitasking or having multiple browser windows open
  • If you need to step away from the chat, let us know.

How long will it take to get a response to an email?

We will respond to your email as soon as possible. We aim to respond within two days but there are times when it may take longer than this.

What if I am in crisis?

Jigsaw is not a crisis service. If you or someone you know needs immediate help, check out crisis support options.

What if I’m attending other mental health services?

Do let us now if you are already linked in with another support service, in particular any regular therapeutic sessions you might have. For example at Jigsaw, in HSE mental health services, student counselling services or another online service.

Having contact with multiple services, particularly if they are not working together can be unhelpful and confusing for you. If you are attending another service, please let us know and we can talk about the best next steps.

I’m looking for information on face to face services.

Find your local Jigsaw contact details here.

What do I do if there is a technical difficulty during my session?

If there is a problem with your internet connection:

Check your internet connection. If you are unable to reconnect, you can access a new chat when your connection is restored. Although it may not be with the same person, the person you speak to will be able to see the details of your previous chat so you can pick up where you left off.

If there is a problem with our internet connection:

If you do not hear from us within five minutes of the chat being disrupted, we will probably need time to resolve the issue. We will email you to let you know what has happened as soon as possible.

If there is a problem with the chat platform:

We will highlight on this page and will email you to let you know what has happened as soon as possible.

Confidentiality

Is this service confidential?

The information that you share in chats and emails is confidential to the Jigsaw Live Chat team. We will not share information without your consent unless we are concerned that you or someone else is at risk of harm.

In such circumstances we may need to share your personal information with third parties such as an Garda Síochána, emergency services or Tusla, The Child and Family Agency to ensure that you or another person at risk gets the appropriate support.

In addition if we are concerned that you or another person is at risk of harm, we may ask you for more information, such as your full name, your address, or contact details for a next of kin who we can contact. It is up to you if you wish to provide this information.

Protecting your information

Jigsaw Live Chat provides confidential and preventative webchat and email services directly to young people. We are committed to doing this while also keeping your data safe.

The information here explains why we collect data, what data is collected, what we do with it, and what you can do to exercise your rights or to get more information.

What information do we collect?

Personal information is any information that can be used to identify you. For example, your name, date of birth, email address, IP address, as well as information relating to your health or personal circumstances.

We retain personal information that you provide, when you:

  • register with us
  • seek assistance and support, for example, by logging in, emailing us or engaging in a chat session
  • otherwise give us personal information.

How do we use your information?

We use your information in the following ways:

  • To give you the information and support you ask for and ensure that Jigsaw staff offer you the best possible service.
  • For internal administrative purposes (like accounting and records), and to let you know about changes to our services or policies.
  • To evaluate what we are doing and understand ways to improve support for young people. We may contact you directly about this. If we use your information in relation to evaluating our services, and for research and analysis, any information that could identify you will be removed.
  • To look in to and respond to complaints, legal claims or other issues.
  • If we need to use your information for other reasons, we will tell you about it and get your permission.

We keep your data in accordance with our data retention policy. We review our data retention periods for personal information on a regular basis.

Who do we share your information with?

When we collect your personal information we use strict procedures and security features to prevent unauthorised access. So that Jigsaw can keep your information safe, it is stored electronically by Microsoft Azure on a secure server. To help look after the Jigsaw Live Chat IT system, there are developers in MHI (New Zealand) who can see your information; they do not store or share your information.

We will not sell your details to any third parties.

Other Information

If you need any more information about the way your personal data will be used, if you want to exercise your data rights, or if you are unhappy with the way we have handled your personal data you can get in touch with our Data Protection Officer:

Data Protection Officer

Jigsaw – The National Centre for Youth Mental Health

16 Westland Square

Pearse Street

Dublin

D02 V590

Email: data.protection@jigsaw.ie

Telephone: 01 472 7010

Jigsaw is a registered charity, CHY 17439.

Changes to this policy

We may change our privacy policy from time to time, so please check back every now and again

To see more about Jigsaw and the supports they offer click the link https://jigsawonline.ie/

 

Alcohol and the adolescent brain – a webinar with Professor Susan Tapert and The Alcohol Forum

Calling all parents of teenagers! Would you like to be able to help your teenagers to avoid getting involved with alcohol during their adolescent years? This webinar organised by the Alcohol Forum based here in Letterkenny gives you the chance to understand how the adolescent brain develops and the impact alcohol or cannabis use can have on it – putting you in a better position to have those important conversations with the teenagers in your life.

Alcohol and the adolescent brain

We all have an important role to play in supporting young people to avoid, delay and minimize alcohol use as they pass through adolescence. Hosted by the Alcohol Forum, this webinar will feature the latest international research on brain development during the teenage years and the impact that alcohol use can have. Professor of Psychiatry, Susan Tapert, from the University of California will outline her ground-breaking research on adolescent brain development, the impact of the repeated use of alcohol and cannabis drugs during adolescent and young adult years and brain markers predictive of substance misuse. The Alcohol Forum will be launching a new resource for young people: Alcohol – Its a No Brainer – All you need to know about alcohol and the teenage brain.

Who’s it for?:
 This webinar will be of interest to professionals and organisations working with young people and parents including those working in the fields of well-being, mental health, education and substance use.

When: Jun 11, 2020 05:00 PM Dublin

Topic: Alcohol and the Adolescent Brain

Registration: In advance – https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_q7b3s5brQJudVUkGxr-GUw

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Questions for Speaker: If you have any questions in advance of the seminar that you would like to be addressed as part of the content, these can be emailed to helen@alcoholforum.org. There will also be an opportunity to ask questions during the seminar.

Socially stranded teens, mental health and the pandemic

From the RTÉ website updated / Tuesday, 7 Apr 2020 07:14

"Our current situation is unlikely to help parents who were afraid of the effect of too much screen time and social media"
“Our current situation is unlikely to help parents who were afraid of the effect of too much screen time and social media”
Opinion: recognising the need for social contact will be key to helping young people cope in the coming weeks and months.

Our house is home to three teenagers. Last week, when social distancing first came into practice and teenagers were being criticised for not complying, our eldest became indignant. “Adults are giving out that we’re not respecting the science about social distancing” she said, “while they’ve been ignoring the science on global warming for years”. Since Greta Thunberg’s rise to prominence, global warming has come to be associated with young people. Social distancing since the coronavirus outbreak, not so much.

A so-called “Corona challenge” has been described in the mainstream media in recent days. It’s unclear how widespread these incidents are (our teens hadn’t come across this at all on social media), but reports have associated it with young people. Minister for Health Simon Harris recently mentioned an incident when someone thought it would be funny to run up to him and cough in his face. In that case, the perpetrators turned out not to be teens, but an older couple.

RTÉ Brainstorm podcast on how to mind your mental health during the lockdown

Whether these distinctions in behaviour are well founded or not (it wasn’t only teens out for walks together), it’s made me think about how young people are affected by the coronavirus and whether this differs from older adults. How do pandemics affect the general population? Here, the research has suggested what will probably seem obvious to most. Firstly, information is really important to assess risk and take relevant precautions and, secondly, communication about steps being taken is key to managing uncertainty, a key factor in anxiety.

A recent review of quarantine studies was published in The Lancet by Samantha Brooks and colleagues. They observed that a key determinant of people’s ability to cope psychologically was having an understanding of why quarantine was important and exactly how long they would be in lock-down. But this review also suggest that those between 16 and 24 years of age might be particularly at risk of poorer psychological coping.

As a developmental stage, young adulthood is a particularly sensitive period in psychological development. We know that 75% of all mental health problems first occur during this period. Good data for Ireland on this group comes from MYWORLD_2, a landmark national survey of over 8,000 young adults published recently. Approximately half of this representative sample showed high levels of anxiety in 18-25 year olds even before the pandemic.

From RTÉ Radio 1’s Drivetime, Della Kilroy reports on new research about teen mental health

This was not just worrying: anxiety here related to experiencing what psychologists consider to be clinically significant symptoms. Neither was this “business as usual” for this age group as these scores were significantly higher that was reported for a similar age group less that 10 years previously. The top stressors reported by young adults were college, the future and finances.

The real reasons for this massive surge in mental health difficulties are often debated. Social media is often blamed, but high self-expectations and long term consequences of recession related financial instability may be just as important.

How are these individuals, who are already showing significant difficulties, likely to cope now? With some difficulty, is the answer. Social isolation (including the inability to gather in peer groups, no sporting outlets etc.), boredom and a lack of routine are likely to compound the mental health difficulties already being experienced.

From RTÉ Radio 1’s Ray D’Arcy Show, interview with Tim Lomas, author of The Positive Power of Negative Emotions which shows the necessity of sadness, anxiety, envy and boredom

Of course, this is unlikely happen immediately. Unlikely physical illness, the psychological fallout from emergencies such as the present one may not be felt right away. If anything, young people may respond positively initially to college closures and the suspension of usual routines as the prospect of one big long break may initially bolster all moods.

But even beyond young people, the delayed effects arising following being caught up in an emergency are well known. The graph below from the HSE’s Psychosocial & Mental Health Needs Following Major Emergencies guidance document illustrates that it’s often only when physical/medical needs start to resolve that emotional needs are felt. What this graph also suggests is that while immediate (acute) needs may resolve quickly, psychological needs can take longer to resolve.

But how can sitting at home as a young person be considered as any sort of emergency? In truth, we don’t know for sure because our current situation is unprecedented. But clues about the likely answer can be found in a number of places. For one thing, we know that the effects of social isolation and loneliness are damaging. A review based on data from more than 70 studies found that chronic loneliness and isolation was associated with significantly increased mortality. Relating these chronic effects to the current situation, the author Julianne Holt-Lunstad suggested there was a risk that people would start to habituate to being isolated and find the habit hard to break even when restrictions were lifted.

Sound alarmist? Not according to scientists who study post traumatic stress disorder, a type of mental health disorder affecting some individuals who experience a traumatic event. Compared to the present pandemic, they argue that the effects of major disasters like 9/11 or Hurricane Katrina or the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami at least had finite endings. We’re stuck in something where we don’t know when it will end and many of our normal needs and coping strategies have been disrupted in the meantime.

The opportunity to get dressed up, go out, and meet up is sorely missed by this group and they’re already starting to talk about big post-coronavirus parties

Among these needs, the need to connect socially is paramount. Aristotle defined humans as essentially social animals and modern neuroscience still holds this to be true. The “social brain” hypothesis suggests that our brains have evolved to allow us to connect with others on a large scale so as to solve problems and gain acess to physical and emotional support.

In her book Inventing Ourselves: The Secret Life of the Teenage Brain, Sarah Jane Blakemore argues that developing this ‘social’ brain takes time and effort, and most of all experience. One way of thinking about the brain is like a tree that is pruned by learning experience. Unlike other animals who reach maturity relatively quickly, humans are slow to mature because they need time to gather the experiences to map out their social worlds and know how to respond adequately.

Sarah-Jayne Blackmore’s TED talk on the mysterious workings of the adolescent brain

But weren’t young people getting that primarily from TikTok and Snapchat anyway, modes of interaction that are alive and well if the number of memes floating around are anything to go by? Well, yes: certainly taking a phone from a teenager is like akin to taking a gazelle’s thigh bone from a tiger. However, that’s all well and good as a supplement to other social activities, including schools and colleges, hanging out in each others houses, going on night’s out and so on.

We all understand the limitations of social media such as the lack of depth, and the frequent misunderstandings. Video clips and memes do allow us to connect at a certain level – we share, we laugh together, we are entertained, we can feel connected and we feel we know what’s going on. One interesting example has been the increased use of Houseparty, an app where young people video chat in groups in a virtual house. Just as in a real house party, you can choose to join or leave conversations. Just as friends of friends might join in at a regular party, same here.

Humans are slow to mature because they need time to gather the experiences to map out their social worlds and know how to respond adequately

Of course, this virtual contact can’t meet all social needs. The opportunity to get dressed up, go out, and meet up is sorely missed by this group and they’re already starting to talk about big post-coronavirus parties. But in the meantime, this is what they have. Our current situation is unlikely to help parents who were afraid of the effect of too much screen time and social media.

So what message should you be giving to the young people in your house? Well, according to the evidence, the poet Hesiod is probably still right: moderation is best in all things. Based on the MYWORLD_2 survey, spending more than three hours per day on social media was associated with poorer coping and greater difficult with mood and anxiety. Now that young people have to sit at home all day, could that be a rule of thumb? Whether it is or not, understanding the need for social contact, both for mental health and for developing brains, will be key to helping young people cope in the coming weeks.


The views expressed here are those of the author and do not represent or reflect the views of RTÉ.

Jigsaw offers online group chat for young people to support their mental health

Jigsaw provides on line group chat opportunities facilitated by Jigsaw clinicians for young people aged between 12 – 25 living in Ireland. You can get more information about them and sign up here https://jigsawonline.ie/young-people/live-group-chats/?utm_source=CM&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=Updates_7

Here is a timetable of which topics are covered during the week and at which times:

Monday at 12 pm: Managing Isolation and Loneliness

Monday at 4 pm: Support for Exam Stress

Tuesday at 11 am: Dealing with Family Conflict

Tuesday at 2 pm: Managing Anxiety

Wednesday at 12 pm: Coping with Feeling low

Wednesday at 4 pm: Managing Isolation and Loneliness

Thursday at 11 am: Support for Exam Stress

Thursday at 2 pm: Dealing with Family Conflict

Friday at 12 pm: Coping with Feeling Low

Friday at 2 pm: Managing Anxiety

If you know a young person who needs support in any of these areas and would like to take part in the group chat facilitated by a Jigsaw clinician please contact Jigsaw at the link above

Find more information, advice and support on https://www.jigsaw.ie/

Employability Project for 16 – 18 year olds not currently in full time education

You Turn

is an Employability Project for 16-18 year olds not currently in full time education / work. Including young people enrolled in school, but not attending school on a full time basis.

– Starting mid-September,

– Finishing Beginning of December,

– Approx 12 weeks,

– Meeting 1 day a week for 2 x hours. Refreshments provided at each session,

– 6 weeks of small group workshops with their key youth worker – Social Personal Development, Confidence Building, Interview Skills & CV Prep etc. In a non-school environment and approach.

– 3 weeks guest facilitator from various industries,

– 3 Trips away (including a visit to Dublin to visit Facebook Irish Head Quarters)

– 1-2-1 support

If you know any young people or parents that might be interested in finding out more, just ask them to contact Siobhán O’Connor at

The LOFT

Donegal Youth Service

16-18 Port Road, Letterkenny, Co. Donegal

Tel.: 074 912 96 40

Website: http://donegalyouthservice.ie

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/yicletterkenny

Teenagers and Digital Etiquette

Here are some good tips from Zeeko to help your children and teenagers – and indeed all of us – have good habits online.

Kids, in particular teens, can get very wrapped up in what they are doing when they spend time online. Our blog this week offers tips on helping kids to learn about digital etiquette.

Teach the “Grandma Rule”: As communication via social media becomes ingrained in our culture, children need to know social networking etiquette. A good rule is to only share or leave comments that you would feel comfortable with granny seeing or reading. If you hesitate or question how grandma would react, then you probably should not be posting. This concept helps kids define what behaviours are acceptable. Also, remind children that nothing is really private online, everything has the possibility of being shared.

Be in the know: Communication is key, because it is estimated that 70 percent of our teens actually take measures to hide their online activity from adults. These behaviours range anywhere from dimming screens, closing windows, or creating dummy social media accounts. It is important that we stay informed about trends, new social media hangouts, and what sites our kids frequent. Ask a child to friend you online and check their activity frequently.

Let them know it’s okay to “say no” to sexting: Sexting involves much more than sending a racy selfie to someone. Teens who sext can be emotionally hurt, bullied, and targeted by sexual predators. Even with the lurking threats, sexting is now frequently perceived as a safe alternative to sex and a normal part of adolescent development. Children need to know that they can decline a sext request. If a person truly cares about them, they will respect the decision to say no.

Take every opportunity possible to remind teenagers that what they see when they are using social media is only a snippet of people’s lives and may not always be a true reflection of reality.

Having an open communication style with your teenager will be a great help when it comes to conversations about social media. If your child knows that they can talk openly to you about what they are encountering when they are using social media, they will be more likely to regularly share their experiences.

Remind your teenager to exercise the same level of caution when they are using social media as they would when they are offline. If they wouldn’t share personal information with a stranger in the ‘real world’, then why would they share this information when they are online?

For older teens, encourage them to activate the safety settings on any digital devices that they are using, be that a smartphone, iPad or Tablet. Regularly reviewing these settings with your teenager is a good idea.

The important thing about safely navigating social media for all of us is knowing how to make smart choices with what you share and who you share it with!

For more tips on internet safety check out:

https://zeeko.ie/teenagers-and-digital-etiquette-zeeko-tips/