Washington Mind Young People’s Project offer 1-1 counselling and groupwork for young people aged 11+ who live within the City of Sunderland.

Washington Mind’s Young Peoples service

Counselling is offered in a variety of venues across the City of Sunderland including, The Life House, PopRecs, and some schools and other community settings.

If you would like to arrange counselling please make contact with us via telephone, text or email.

When you contact us, we will arrange a suitable time to speak with you directly via telephone. During our phone call we we’ll check out what’s going on for you. If we agree that counselling may help with your situation we then add you to our waiting list to arrange an appointment.

Sometimes while you are waiting for counselling it can be helpful to access other services that offer support:

  • Childlineis here to help anyone under 19 in the UK with any issue they’re going through. You can talk about anything. Whether it’s something big or small, our trained counsellors are here to support you. Childline is free, confidential and available any time, day or night.
  • Kooth, from XenZone, is an online counsellingand emotional well-being platform for children and young people, accessible through mobile, tablet and desktop …
  • YoungMinds – We’re the UK’s leading charity fighting for children and youngpeople’s mental health. We will make sure all young people get the best possible mental health.

At the first appointment that we make sure that counselling is the best way forward.  Often it is helpful if a parent can attend this with you, but we always check this with you when you arrive. We also agree further support and arrange for this to happen.

Appointments are confidential unless you tell us that you, or someone else is in an unsafe situation.  We may then have to share information to prevent someone from being harmed.  If we felt that we had to pass on information without your permission, we would always speak to you first about the need to do this and we would explain what would happen next.

Our service continues to adapt, and is influenced primarily by the opinions and needs of young people. All of our best ideas come from them, such as; StrangeThings? Zine, our app Reasons2, the Young People’s area of our online directory (wellbeinginfo.org) and our LGBTQI support group. Young people are currently working as co-creators on a project focusing on loneliness and particularly what can help combat this, this is a 3 year project funded by Kavlifondet.

The service we offer continues to evolve, and we use a participatory approach to engage with young people as advisors. This enables us to develop new ways of engaging with our community to reduce the stigma around mental health and enable people to access support at the most appropriate time.

Useful Links

Wellbeinginfo for young people

We have a dedicated Young People’s section of of wellbeinginfo.org where you can find out about different topics such as mental health, self-harm and wellbeing. Click here to visit the area now.



You're Not Alone

You’re not Alone is an online wellbeing resource formed in Sunderland as part of our Young People’s Project. Their purpose is to support and encourage young people in their engagement with creativity as a self-help tool, especially when experiencing loneliness. They want to celebrate the strength of young people by recognising the difficult conditions they are currently experiencing, by acknowledging everyone’s individual experiences of loneliness and showcasing how resourceful they truly are.

In December 2020, we developed a creative self-help booklet. Click here to find out more.

Click here to visit the project’s website now to find out more and get involved.



Mental Health Zine Library (MHZL)

The Mental Health Zine Library will be a mobile pop up library and archive, developed with young people, exclusively for DIY publishing on the theme of mental health and all that includes.

Based at Washington Mind, The Life House, the collection will contain zines and publications from creators across the country who have shared their work with us. A small archive, it will stand as a pop up feature and, when stock grows, will be a mobile stall at events, art spaces, schools and workshops.

There will be a catalogue of the publications on the MHZL website where you can also find info on events, cool additions to the library, features and information on how to submit your own zines to the collection.

Click here to find out more and keep up to date with developments of the project.

LGBTQI Youth Group

Washington Mind’s LGBTQI youth group is currently on hold. If you would like to be notified once the group resumes, and discuss attending at this point, get in touch on: 01914178043 or send us an email to: [email protected].

strangethings? Zine

strange things? Zine, is an Sunderland-based Zine (a zine is a small circulation, DIY publications) that encourages people to use creativity as a self care tool which we worked in partnership with young people to develop, to make sure we kept a focus on mental wellbeing, and we’ve produced some collections of creative work over the years such as Closure, Loneliness and Progress (which you can flick through here).

We’ve been making zines and running creative workshops with young people in our area since 2017.

Click here to visit our Twitter page to find out more and keep up to date with the Zine.

Let Out the Noise

Let Out The Noise is a new singing group, delivered in partnership with We Make Culture, Washington Mind and Sunderland Music Hub, that has proved to be very popular with young people who just sing because they enjoy it! The group’s pull has not diminished during lockdown, as it has continued via online video service, Zoom; you could argue that it is needed now more than ever! Here is Laura Brewis, of We Make Culture, to tell you a little about how the group works and it’s transition to the virtual world:

 “Together with Washington Mind and Sunderland Music Hub, our Let Out the Noise group is back in September and staying online for now.

Let Out The Noise is a chance to come together with like-minded 12 to 18 year olds, and sing and play some well-known songs, from number 1s to musicals! Led by musicians Ashleigh Lowes and Paige Temperley, over six weekly sessions you will be supported to learn songs on guitar, ukuele, keyboard (or whatever instrument you bring to the group!) or just using your voice, with the aim of forming the best online covers band in Sunderland!

The aim of the sessions is to build your confidence, develop singing skills, try playing an instrument and make some new friends. The emphasis is on having fun, working at your own pace and working together as a group, so even if you’ve never tried anything like this before, you will be welcome!

You don’t need to have experience of singing, playing an instrument or reading music to take part, and we can help with providing an instrument if you don’t have one at home. If you’ve never used Zoom before we can also support you to get online.”

If you’d like to join up, please email [email protected]


If you would like to talk to somebody about counselling or any of our services, you or somebody you trust, can text your name to 07507 330995 and we will get back to you as soon as we can. Alternatively, we can be contacted by email at: [email protected] or phone on: 0191 417 8043.