Reach4Wellbeing Parent/Carer Skills Groups

Attending a group is a great opportunity to be able to take that first step in supporting your child to manage their feelings and emotions when situations get difficult.

We do understand that for some people starting something new, especially a group which is online, can be worrying. Any feelings of anxiety around attending the group are normal and most people joining are going to feel this way at the start.

Here are the answers to the parent/carer’s most frequently asked questions, we hope they will help you.

Why am I being offered a group?

Once your child’s referral into CAMHS Reach4Wellbeing (R4W) has been accepted you will be offered a place on one of our groups for parents and carers

Any referrals that have gone through other teams in CAMHS have been assessed by clinicians who specialise in children and young people’s mental health.

The outcome is that a group is the best option within CAMHS to meet your child’s emotional wellbeing and/or resilience difficulties

What are the positives to coming to a group?

Many parents who have already attended have been able to support their child make the changes needed to help them manage their own emotions and responses.

Being part of a supportive environment.

Gives you the opportunity to work with and get to know other parents who are sharing similar experiences.

Can help to understand that although emotional wellbeing and/or resilience difficulties within a family can feel isolating no one is going through it on their own.

A group can be just as good as one to one work.

Why am I attending and not my child?

Evidence shows there has been much greater improvements when parents and carers coach their own children, compared with when the children work with clinicians directly.

The knowledge, skills, techniques and strategies available to you by engaging with the programme content will help you to support your child in managing their own emotions and responses.

The work you do with your child whilst you are attending the group and consistently afterwards can be transferred across to all aspects of their life. The more they practice the skills that you have modelled, the better they will become at dealing with situations in any environment.

You as parents/carers are the most important agent for change in a child’s life to help them to overcome their difficulties.

Participating within the group activities can help give you the confidence to firstly use the techniques and strategies for yourself and then to teach them to your child.

You can be on hand to create situations for your child so they can practice what you have learnt.

You are more likely than your child to remember the techniques in the months ahead, once the sessions have ended.

Do I have to have my camera on?

Yes, it is important for everyone that is attending the sessions to have their cameras on throughout the session for a number of reasons:

  • It helps to build relationships within the group and R4W facilitators helping you to get the most out of the sessions
  • We need to confirm and document that you have attended the whole session.

It helps us to see if anyone is having any difficulties with the online programme or internet connections.

Will I have to share personal information?

Our sessions are not talking therapy sessions and you will not be asked to share any personal information or discuss your feelings in the group which you do not feel comfortable with sharing or that is not relevant to your child’s mental health.

Joining in with the activities and contributing to discussions will help you to feel better able to help your child and have a more positive outcome.

Sharing your experiences and what has worked for you in the past can also help the group.

Attending Sessions

CAMHS is a 9–5 service which means the groups fall within that time. We run our parent / carers groups in the morning 10.00am -11.00am or at lunch time 1.00pm - 2.00pm.

Although you are attending the sessions, they are for the benefit of your child, therefore please consider them as having the same importance as any other health appointment you take your child to.

So that you can give your full attention to being part of the group you will need to be in a quiet area free from distractions, we know that this can be difficult at times, but it helps you and the rest of the group to get the most out of the sessions.

Try It Out Activities

You will receive an information Booklet which you can refer back too after the sessions, this will help you to deliver the programme content to your child.

You will also receive Try It Out Activities each week for you and your child so you can practice the techniques and strategies discussed within the sessions together.

These resources will help you to consolidate your learning and you will be able to continue to use them throughout your child’s recovery journey.