Getting help: mental health and community supports

Many of us will experience times in our lives when we need some extra support, whether that’s with our mental health or with concerns and practicalities around a particular situation.

Here you will find information about and links to a variety of supports and services which may be helpful for young people and parents.

Urgent support

If you or someone you know are in immediate distress or crisis, please reach out and know that there is support available.

  • Pieta

    Pieta supports people and communities in crisis. Its helpline (1800 247 247) and text service (51 444) operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Its email response (mary@pieta.ie) operates from Monday to Friday between 8am to 8pm. You will also find contact details, and information for a Suicide Bereavement Liaison Service on the Pieta website.

  • Samaritans

    The Samaritans is a confidential, emotional support service for anyone in the United Kingdom and Ireland, and is available 24 hours a day for people experiencing feelings of distress or despair, including feelings that may lead to suicide. You can call the Samaritans on 116 123 or email the team at jo@samaritans.org.

  • St Patrick's Support and Information Line

    The Support and Information Line from St Patrick’s Mental Health Services is a telephone and email service, run by experienced mental health nurses. It is available from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday: call 01 249 3333 or email a query to info@stpatsmail.com.

  • Text 50808

    Text 50808 is a free text service, available 24 hours a day and seven days a week. It provides everything from a calming chat to immediate support for people going through a mental health or emotional crisis. If you need support, you can text HELLO to 50808, anytime day or night.

Mental health supports

If you are looking for support for or information around a mental health difficulty - whether for yourself, a young person in your life, a family member or friend - you may find the following organisations helpful.

  • Alcoholics Anonymous

    Alcoholics Anonymous supports people who desire to and are taking steps to recover from alcohol addiction. You can contact its team by calling 01 842 0700 or emailing gso@alcoholicsanonymous.ie. If you are deaf or hard of hearing, you can text 087 146 0387 with your query.

  • Aware

    Aware provides support, information and education for people affected by stress, depression, bipolar disorder and mood related conditions. Its support line is available at 1800 80 48 48 from Monday to Sunday, 10am to 10pm, or by emailing supportmail@aware.ie.

  • Bodywhys

    Bodywhys is the national organisation supporting people living with eating disorders. If you wish to contact someone at Bodywhys for support, please use the email support service, alex@bodywhys.ie. You can also call its helpline on 01 210 7906.

  • Health Service Executive

    The Health Service Executive (HSE) provides resources and information on mental health services in your area from its YourMentalHealth.ie website. You can also call its infoline on 1800 111 888: this is a Freephone number.

  • SeeChange

    SeeChange is a national organisation dedicated to ending mental health stigma, which is informed by people with lived experiences of mental health difficulties. It provides numerous resources combatting mental health stigma, as well as offering a workplace anti-stigma programme. You can call 01 541 3715 to speak with its team.

  • Shine

    Shine aims to empower people with mental ill-health and their families through support, information and education. You can contact its counselling service by email at phil@shine.ie if you are seeking emotional support, relapse prevention, access to individual or group support, information for a recent diagnosis or to support friends and family of a person experiencing mental ill-health.

Other supports

  • Supports for carers, parents and families

    Family Carers Ireland offers a range of supports and services for family carers, along with providing helpful resources on its website.

    EPIC is a national voluntary organisation supporting and advocating for children and young adults who are currently in care, prearing to leave care, or have experience of being in a wide range of care settings. You can get in touch with its team by visiting the EPIC website, calling 01 872 7661, or emailing info@epiconline.ie.

    One Family works to create structural change which enables positive, equal futures for all members of one-parent families in Ireland.  It supports individual parents and families through times of change, as well as being there for people experiencing crisis pregnancies. You can visit the One Family website for more information, or call its Askonefamily lo-call helpline on 1890 662 212 or 01 662 9212.

    Parentline is a national, confidential helpline that offers parents support, information and guidance on all aspects of being a parent. You can call Parentline on 01 873 3500 between 10am and 9pm from Monday to Thursday, or on Fridays from 10am to 4pm.

    The Parents Centre from the Department of Children and Youth Affairs aims to provide helpful resources and trusted information for parents.

  • Supports for children and young people

    Barnardos works with children affected by adverse experiences and their families through a number of different services, including early intervention and community supports. You can visit the Barnardos website to find out more and contact its services, or call 01 453 0355 for more information.

    Childline is a 24-hour national listening service for all children and young people under the age of 18 in Ireland, providing by the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children. It is private, confidential and non-judgemental. Any child or young person in Ireland can get in touch by calling 1800 666 666, texting 50101 or chatting online on the Childline website.

  • Support and information around COVID-19

    One of the key ways we can support ourselves and young people in our lives during the COVID-19 pandemic is to seek and follow balanced, reliable information so that we can better understand the reality of the situation and the steps we can all take to protect against it.

    The HSE regularly updates its websites and channels with information about coronavirus. Here, you can find out about symptoms of the virus, and ways to protect yourself and others from it. A range of posters and resources share this information in several different languages. A series of guides for children on what to expect at a coronavirus testing centre or drive-through test centre is also available.

    The World Health Organisation provides regular updates on coronavirus across the world, as well as offering helpful advice on measures to prevent its spread. You can read its advice and watch videos on how to protect yourself and others against coronavirus.

    The Irish Hospice Foundation has launched a COVID-19 Care and Inform Hub on its website, offering support and advice on grief, loss and bereavement care during the ongoing pandemic.

    Meanwhile, we have compiled a series of further supports and guidance for young people dealing with the pandemic.

  • Supports for the LGBT+ community

    Since 2003, BelongTo has supported lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI+) young people, aged between 14 and 23, across Ireland. You can call BelongTo on 01 670 6223 from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, or email info@belongto.org for information on or to get involved in their supports and services. You can also chat in confidence with a trained crisis volunteer over text by texting LGBTI+ to 086 180 0280. This service is available 24/7 and is anonymous.

    Gay Switchboard Ireland offers a confidential telephone support service for the LGBT+ community, including parents, families, friends or anyone with questions or concerns relating to sexuality. The switchboard operates seven days a week and can be called on 01 872 1055.  

    Transgender Equality Network Ireland (TENI) supports the trans community in Ireland by working towards a society where trans people can participate fully and are understood and respected. You can find out more about its projects and services on the TENI website, or by calling 01 873 3575.

  • Supports for trauma and violence

    The It Stops Now campaign from the National Women’s Council works to achieve an end to sexual violence and harassment in third-level education.

    People affected by sexual violence can call the National 24 Hour Freephone Helpline on 1800 778 888 for support and information. You can also find your local Rape Crisis Centre here for a safe space to access both practical information and supports to help you move forward from trauma.  

    One in Four supports people who experienced childhood sexual abuse and their families through counselling, advocacy work and other supports. You can contact the team on 01 662 4070 or send them a message through the One in Four website to find out more.

    Women of any age affected by domestic violence, or friends and family seeking to support women and children who are experiencing domestic violence, can call Women’s Aid national Freephone helpline on 1800 341 900. This is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Its text service for deaf and hard of hearing women is available daily on 087 959 7980, while an online chat service is available Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 7pm to 10pm from the Women’s Aid website.