Supporting Young People

Our youth counselling service can help young people to build confidence, resilience and self-esteem.

Bullying: Youth Counselling for Victims & Bullies

What is bullying?

Bullying can range from name-calling, and hitting or kicking, to cyber bullying – threats or name-calling via
Internet messaging/SMS or social media. Bullies upset their victim by picking on their sensitive points. There is no set age at which bullying starts or stops, everyone can experience bullying at any stage in life.

How does it feel?

The person being bullied can feel a whole range of emotions, from feeling upset or shut out, to feeling suicidal and self harming. Often, the person feels alone, helpless, powerless and afraid that if they tell anyone, the bullying will get worse. This can affect their health, their confidence, their self esteem and their work. Some people even feel ashamed and think they have brought it on themselves.

There is no excuse for bullying – bullying is abuse, whether it is violent or not.

Remember: No one has the right to bully you.

A national helpline exists to help you find out more about available support services.

How we can help too

People of all ages come to the Change Project every year for help with problems like this. We help all sorts of people in all sorts of situations, and we can help you. If you think you are the Bully, and you want to change, we can help you too: Behaviour Change.

Youth Counselling: Relationship Issues

Adults are sometimes dismissive of the relationship problems experienced by younger people.
They say things like,‘Someone else will come along’, or, ‘you’re only young, you’ll meet someone else’.

But young people experience the same range and intensity of difficulties with relationships as older people, including sexting, controlling behaviour, two-timing, or breaking up with someone they love. All these problems and others, are important. How you deal with them can make the difference between feeling worthless and unloved, and feeling confident and self-assured.

Your relationship problems might be with family members or friends – not just a partner – but they can cause just as much stress. The Change Project’s youth counselling service can help. We don’t judge anyone, and what you say is confidential.

Young People’s Counselling.

Youth Counselling: Changing Abusive Behaviour

Change offers confidential support for young people ages 11-18 (up to 25 for young people with additional needs) who want to change their behaviour, and develop improved awareness of healthy communication in relationships. We help young people to look at their abusive behaviour and find safe, non-abusive alternatives.

How do you behave with your family, your girlfriend or boyfriend?

Have you…

  • Smashed things up and scared those around you?
  • Tried to control your partner’s behaviour with her friends and family?
  • Checked your partners phone and text?
  • Hit out or hit someone close?
  • Screamed and shouted? Punched something or someone?
  • Used weapons to hurt people?

It doesn’t have to be like this. If you are worried about hurting someone you care about call us.

Youth Counselling: Active Listening in Schools

What is it?

We train suitable students to become Active Listeners who can then help to assist victims of bullying and victimisation. They can also help those students with emotional issues that are having an effect on their performance at school.

Who is it for?

We train up to 24 selected students aged 11-18 years to become a listening point for other students who may find it easier to talk to a trained peer than with a member of staff.

How does it work?

We deliver six group sessions, each lasting 1.5 hours, or an equivalent period of time depending on the school calendar. Sessions involve discussion, role play, hand outs and time for questions and evaluation.

The training covers:

  • Active Listening techniques
  • Basic empathy
  • Reflective responding
  • Body language
  • Summarising
  • Using Questions
  • Conflict resolution
  • Confidentiality
  • Safeguarding children and young people

Students who successfully become Active Listeners gain a certificate and a badge of office on the completion of training.

Healthy Relationships Programme

We have teamed up with arts charity Tender Education & Arts to deliver the Tender Healthy Relationships Programme which has been delivered to schools across London and Essex for the past 13 years.

Who is it for?

Tender Healthy Relationships is a 10 hour project which works with one class of students in either Year 7,8, 9, 10 or 11.At the end of the project the group will share back to their peers, spreading the message across the community as a whole.

How does it work?

Our team of trained facilitators work with a core group of around 25 to 30 year 7-11 students for the whole 10 hours. We can be flexible about how we deliver these 10 hours; 2 full days, 5 x 2 hour sessions etc. Our aim is to help students develop skills for building healthy and respectful relationships. We achieve this through open, creative workshops that explore the healthy and unhealthy aspects of relationships, empowering students to consider their attitudes and behaviour in an age appropriate way.

As part of the project each participating school will receive an hour long CPD accredited INSET training session for a minimum of 20 staff. This short training session aims to develop understanding of the issues that can arise for young people as they begin to engage in intimate relationships.

Young people are the group most at risk from abusive relationships. The session equips school staff with an understanding of these issues, helping them to support their students more effectively. Run in an informal, discussion-based style, participants will cover vital information about risk factors for young people, an exploration of why abuse occurs, and guidance on approaching the issue with young people.

The Aims of the Project

We aim to empower participating young people to:

  • Understand the components and characteristics of healthy and unhealthy relationships.
  • Discuss attitudes towards relationships constructively.
  • Recognise early warning signs of an unhealthy relationship.
  • Identify where and how to seek support.
  • Advocate respect and equality in their peer groups and communities.
  • Develop communication skills.
What topics does this project cover?

Each project is responsive and aims to focus on the issues which are of most importance to young people.

  • Different types of abuse – physical, sexual, emotional/psychological, financial.
  • The scale of the problem – In the UK 1 in 3 women experience abuse in a life time (NICE guidance 2014)
  • The relevance of the issue to the group – Younger women (aged 16 – 24) is the age group most at risk of an unhealthy relationship (Office for National Statistics)
  • Early warning signs of an abusive, controlling partner.
  • Excuses used by perpetrators to control their partners
  • Challenges of leaving an unhealthy relationship.
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