Skip to main content

Volunteering at Scouts is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing at Scouts. Read more

Discover what this means

Mental health

Find out how to support children and young people who struggle with their mental health

Mental health refers to the way we think, feel and act. Everybody has mental health, the same way everybody has physical health, and we need to look after it.

People from all backgrounds and of all ages can experience a mental health problem, so being able to talk about it is important.

What are signs of mental health problems?

There are some feelings, signs and symptoms that can be common with mental health problems. Find out more about mental health with the NHS.

  • Sadness, or a low mood that does not go away, such as being tearful or frequently upset.
  • Avoiding everyday activities, such as seeing friends, going out in public or going to school.
  • Interacting less with friends and family.
  • Talking about feeling guilty or worthless.
  • Feeling empty or unable to feel emotions (feeling numb).
  • Not being interested in things they used to enjoy.
  • Being irritable or grumpy all the time, or having angry outbursts.
  • Feeling tired and exhausted a lot of the time.
  • Having problems with sleeping or eating.
  • Having a lot of negative thoughts.
  • Abusing alcohol or drugs.
  • Talking about suicide, or having thoughts about suicide.
  • Talking about self-harming, or actively harming themselves.

Further guidance to support young people

Promoting good mental health

Learn how to have open conversations about mental health in Scouts.

Find out how to promote good mental health

Dealing with eating problems

Find out more about how to support a young person with eating problems or eating disorders.

Learn more about eating problems

Dealing with self-harm

Find out how you can support children and young people who self-harm.

Learn more about self-harm

Reporting a concern

If you're concerned about the welfare of a child, young person or adult volunteer, you must follow the Yellow Card Code of Conduct for Adults and report it to the UK HQ Safeguarding Team.

Report a concern to safeguarding

Further support

These resources provide information and advice. You can also share them with young people.

  • Childline. Talk to Childline by calling 0800 1111.
  • Young Minds. Text SHOUT to 85258 to talk to a trained volunteer.
  • Mind. Talk to Mind by calling 0300 123 3393.
  • Samaritans. Talk to Samaritans by calling 116 123.
  • NHS. For urgent medical advice, call 111.
  • SAMH (Scotland). Talk to SAMH by calling 0344 800 0550.
  • Inspire (Ireland). Talk to Inspire by calling 0808 189 0036.