GREATER awareness of the mental health services available to Carlow families in crisis is needed right across the county, according to a local election hopeful. Fianna Fáil candidate in the Bagenalstown Municipal District Josie Daly pointed out that mental health has impacted many families, but when families are in a time of need they are unaware of all of the services available to them.
“As a mother of three, I am acutely aware of the pressures that face young people in society. Young people are now subjected to online coercion and bullying, which is impacting on the mental stability of our vulnerable young people,” said Josie.
“Drugs are also a major contributor to people’s mental health, as they are readily available and too easily accessed. Government need to implement mandatory programmes delivered by trained professionals to educate secondary school students about the dangers of using illegal drugs and the importance of protecting themselves online,” she urged.
“In addition to this, we need to pay more attention to our own mental wellbeing to be able to care for our families and to able to deal with the stresses of everyday life,” said Josie.
“Carlow Regional Youth Services works tirelessly to provide early intervention counselling services for young people aged from 12 to18 years. SHIP is a self-harm intervention service and Talk It Over is an additional service, which helps people suffering from bereavement. Pieta House is also an excellent counselling service for self-harm and suicidal distress,” explained Josie.
She also praised the seven-day-a-week services of Kilkenny-based charity Teac Tom, which are also available to Carlow families. These services include play therapy for toddlers and children, counselling for children, teenagers and adults who are suffering with their mental health, from addiction, bereavement, anxiety, depression and suicidal distress. Teac Tom also offers family counselling.
“I was overwhelmed by the services that Teac Tom provides and the amount of people who use the facilities, but it astounds me that they do not receive government funding to sustain this service,” she said.
“At present, Teac Tom is a voluntary service that solely depends on the goodwill of people fundraising. I would strongly recommend that people familiarise themselves with this fantastic service.”
If you would like to reach out to Teac Tom, contact 056 7796592 or 087 6566377; alternatively, you can drop in to the house at 15 Ormonde Road, Kilkenny city.