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Characteristics of someone to turn to about mental health

This resource looks at the different characteristics of what can make a young person see an adult as trusted.

We asked young people to share their thoughts and experiences of what makes an adult someone they can turn to when they're struggling with their mental health. 

Someone who is really open-minded and doesn’t come into a conversation with a young person with any preconceived ideas about what they’ve experienced and why they are feeling a certain way.

It’s somebody that doesn’t try to fix the young person rather than fix the feelings they’re going through, just supports them instead to help them feel better.

They need to be trustworthy, caring, they need to be support and make sure they have your back. They need to make sure they have a positive influence on you because you look up to them.

Download the resource

We also have this resource available as a pdf for you to download and share with your community.

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What makes an adult someone to turn about your mental health?

  • Open minded

    they are reflective, considerate and have good knowledge of the young person

  • Patient

    they are patient and know when to listen

  • Comforting

    they are comforting with a calm tone of voice and have the ability to manage their own reactions

  • Observant

    they notice the young person

  • Reliable

    they are honest with clear boundaries

  • Supportive

    they are supportive and hold the emotions safely for the young person

  • Big-hearted

    they are big-hearted with empathy, connection, and a sense of calm

  • Committed

    they stand alongside the young person.

More resources for you

We have created resources for people just like you who are working in the community. Take a look at our resources to help you feel equipped when a young person turns to you for support.

Supporting young people in your community

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Whether you work at a youth club, coach a sports team, or run extra-curricular activities outside of school, we know the positive and crucial role you play in the lives of young people but understand you may often feel under-equipped to support them.

We have lots of new information, tips, and advice to help you feel prepared to support young people in your community.

Find out more

Mental health training

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Our training courses are designed to build your understanding of key mental health issues and give you the confidence to make a difference in young people's lives.

Take a look at our courses and see how our expert trainers can give you the practical skills to support young people in the community.

Find out more about our training