Urgent / Emergency Help

If you need urgent help or are very worried about someone’s mental health, call 111 or go to A&E. If you feel like harming or hurting yourself or other people, call 999 and ask for the police. If you already receive support from mental health services, you will have a care plan. This will include details of who you should call in a crisis. If you can’t find your care plan, ring 111.


Mental Health Crisis Helplines

If you’re in crisis and need to talk right now, there are many helplines staffed by trained people ready to listen. They won’t judge you, and could help you make sense of what you’re feeling.

  • Samaritans. To talk about anything that is upsetting you, you can contact Samaritans 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. You can call 116 123 (free from any phone), email jo@samaritans.org or visit some branches in person. You can also call the Samaritans Welsh Language Line on 0808 164 0123 (7pm–11pm every day).
  • SANEline. If you’re experiencing a mental health problem or supporting someone else, you can call SANEline on 0300 304 7000 (4.30pm–10.30pm every day).
  • BEAT. Beat provides Helplines for people of all ages, offering support and information about eating disorders no matter where you are in your journey. These Helplines are free to call from all phones. Helpline: 0808 801 0677, Studentline: 0808 801 0811, Youthline: 0808 801 0711. Helplines are open 365 days a year from 12pm–8pm during the week, and 4pm–8pm on weekends and bank holidays. Beat also provides online groups and support, and one-to-one web chat.
  • SHOUT. Is the UK’s first 24/7 text service, free on all major mobile networks, for anyone in crisis anytime, anywhere. SHOUT is a place to go if you’re struggling to cope and you need immediate help. Text Shout to 85258.
  • Papyrus HOPELINEUK. If you’re under 35 and struggling with suicidal feelings, or concerned about a young person who might be struggling, you can call Papyrus HOPELINEUK on 0800 068 4141 (weekdays 10am-10pm, weekends 2pm-10pm and bank holidays 2pm–10pm), email pat@papyrus-uk.org or text 07786 209 697.
  • Nightline. If you’re a student, you can look on the Nightline website to see if your university or college offers a night-time listening service. Nightline phone operators are all students too.
  • Switchboard. If you identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender, you can call Switchboard on 0300 330 0630 (10am–10pm every day), email chris@switchboard.lgbt or use their webchat service. Phone operators all identify as LGBT+.
  • Helplines Partnership. For more options, visit the Helplines Partnership website for a directory of UK helplines. Mind’s Infoline can also help you find services that can support you. If you’re outside the UK, the Befrienders Worldwide website has a tool to search by country for emotional support helplines around the world.



  • Kooth is a FREE, anonymous, confidential, safe, online wellbeing service, offering professional support, information and forums for young people. Kooth is for young people aged 11-25 and offers a range of features including; discussion boards, 1-1 chat, a magazine and a daily journal.Find out how to sign up here.
  • Qwell offers free, anonymous access to resources, an online community and live messaging with an online support team. Qwell is for those aged 26 and over
  • Headspace is your guide to mindfulness for your everyday life. Choose from hundreds of guided meditations on everything from managing stress and everyday anxiety, to sleep, focus and mind-body health. Headspace is free to download or premium access can be paid for.
  • Calm is the no.1 app for sleep, meditation and relaxation. Calm aims to help you improve your sleep quality, reduce stress or anxiety and improve focus.



In order to access NHS support with your eating problem, you should talk to your GP first. If you want some advice about how to approach your GP, see Beat’s leaflet about Talking to Your GP. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence guidelines about eating disorders on the www.nice.org.uk  website may also be a helpful tool to enable you to put into words what you are experiencing.

Below is a list of the services available through a GP or specialist mental health referral:

  • The EDICT service
    Community-based treatment team for young people under 18 based South of the Tyne. Contact Number: 0191 566 5500.

Support for Parents and Carers

  • Maudsley Parents, a volunteer organisation of parents who have helped their children recover from anorexia and bulimia through the use of Family-Based Treatment, also known as the Maudsley approach
  • Regional Carers Centres are situated throughout the North East. These offer a safe space for adults who provide a voluntary caring role to talk, be heard and receive support. The attached provides contact details for each local centre.
  • Young Minds Parents’ Helpline: 0808 802 5544, free, confidential online and telephone support to any adult worried about the emotional problems, behaviour or mental health of a child or young person up to the age of 25
  • Helpguide.org: USA website with information about helping someone with an eating disorder



Self-help Peer Support Groups

  • Overeaters Anonymous (OA) – Self-help peer support group for people with any type of eating distress/issues around food (based on the Twelve Step programme of Alcoholics Anonymous). Meets from 7.00pm on Thursdays and 2.00pm on Saturdays, in the Upstairs Meeting Room at George Street Social, George Street, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE4 7JN. Newcomers always welcome. Further information available on tel: 07866 075 252 (Thursday meeting) or tel: 077573 17467 (Saturday meeting), or click here.
  • Anorexics and Bulimics Anonymous (ABA) – Self-help peer support group for people with anorexia or bulimia (also based on the Twelve Step programme of Alcoholics Anonymous). Meets virtually via Zoom 6.30-8pm on Tuesdays. Newcomers always welcome. Further information available on tel: 07534 954 519 or click here.



Student Counselling Services

Universities and some colleges have their own counselling service which is free and confidential and is available to all students.



Counselling and Support for Young People

  • Streetwise : 0191 230 5400, for young people aged 11 to 25
  • WEYES : 0191 273 3997, drop-in sessions and counselling
  • YoungMinds : young people’s mental health and wellbeing



Other Counselling Services



Local Support

One way to gain some support is to contact NIWE (see Contact Us). You might also want to talk to your friends, family and GP. Sometimes it is hard to start the conversation but there are various sources of information in the local or national links provided that can help you do this, or you can download our list of Counselling Services in the North East.

  • The Recovery Colleges in Tyneside, Northumberland and Sunderland offer a wide range of free courses, workshops and events on mental health topics



National Support

The following may offer you further information.

  • Beat - the leading UK wide eating disorders charity, which also has a youth helpline.
  • CALM – the campaign against living miserably, dedicated to preventing male suicide in the UK
  • YoungMinds – young people’s mental health and wellbeing



Some online resources



Resources relating to the Coronavirus pandemic 

  • Coping strategies for uncertain times (Part 1 and Part 2) – Psychology Today


Group support/ activities

  • School of Mindfulness Face-to-face sessions at Old Low Light Heritage Centre in North Shields on the first Saturday of every month, 10-11am, starting 4th September 2021. Pre-book only via Eventbrite here. £3 – £5 donation to pay on attendance at the event. Online sessions on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th Sunday of each month from 9.15 – 9.45am (UK time) via Zoom.
  • Breathworks – Weekly Youtube live stream every Tuesday 7-7:30pm.
  • Re-Co-Co Newcastle Virtual Class Timetable available via website, including Zoom links

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