Mental health and the emotional wellbeing of children and young people has been rising up the national agenda for the past decade.
Too many children and young people nationally do not receive the support they need to improve their mental health and wellbeing. There is ample evidence that, despite increased investment in, and policy focus on, mental health services for children and young people, the numbers of children and young people requiring support are going up. Thresholds for accessing support remain high, waiting times are long and there is significant inequity in provision between different local areas.
The purpose of this research is, firstly, to explore some of the factors which are contributing to this nationally challenging context and, secondly, to develop an evidence base for how local government and its partners can work most effectively together to deliver a coherent and joined-up offer of support for children and young people’s mental health. The research is based on a review of the existing evidence base, workshops with around 80 participants from councils and their partners in health and in-depth engagements with eight fieldwork areas.