01 October 2013

October Opening of Jigsaw important for youth mental health

Following many years work on the issue, local T.D. and Minister for Children & Youth Affairs Frances Fitzgerald, said she "was immensely proud to officially launch the new Youth Mental Health centre Jigsaw Clondalkin," based beside St Peter’s Apostle Church in Neilstown in early October.

"A few years ago, young people in Clondalkin were going through a tough time coping with mental health issues. We were able to work with Headstrong and its founder, Dr. Tony Bates, to provide community outreach and support to young people who needed it at that critical time. Seeing the work that had been done on the ground, Headstrong chose Neilstown as a location for their Jigsaw project; a drop in centre offering a free confidential service with qualifies professionals to young people as well as bringing greater awareness of mental health to the wider community," the Minister said.

"I was especially pleased that the service was available in time for National Mental Health Day (October 10th), when the national spotlight was shone on this vital issue.

"Jigsaw is an innovative programme that works with communities to offer timely, accessible and appropriate, youth-friendly support for young people, as part of Dr. Bates’ Headstrong initiative to support youth mental health.

"I have been privileged to go through this journey with Jigsaw, from that initial contact in the community to seeing the project develop and the centre come to fruition. The Project Manager Debbie Scales, all the team at Jigsaw as well as the young people on the Youth Advisory Panel have really worked hard to deliver an open, caring and effective service to help people when they are most in need of support. This beautiful, welcoming facility created and designed by the Youth Advisory Panel for their peers is the perfect place for young people to access help and support when they need it.

"I would encourage any young person who may be experiencing negative mental wellbeing, whether great or small, and may feel they need support, guidance or just a friendly chat in comfortable surroundings, to contact Jigsaw Clondalkin on 01 5380087 or email Clondalkin@jigsaw.ie".