Finding help during the coronavirus outbreak

Many people are feeling more anxious as the coronavirus outbreak starts to affect all aspects of our daily lives. You may be worried about your physical health, finances or job security. Some people could also be affected by social isolation or loneliness.

People in Leeds are encouraged to take care of their mental health just as much as their physical health during this difficult time and ask for support when they need it.

Services offering mental health support are open although many are adapting the way they can offer help at the moment, because of social distancing guidance.

​How can I find help for my mental health?

MindWell has self-help resources and tools to help you understand and manage problems like anxiety, stress and low moods. It can also help you access a range of tools and self-care resources to help you feel calmer and cope better with life's ups and downs.

Leeds Mental Mental Wellbeing Service - anyone aged over 17 and registered with a Leeds GP can access free online therapy courses, available at any time day or night, to help with a wide range of issues including stress and anxiety, mindfulness, panic attacks, depression and bereavement. The service also provides psychological support which is currently being delivered through telephone and online video-platforms. The service is continuing to screen and assess new referrals.
Web: www.leedsmentalwellbeingservice.co.uk Tel 0113 843 4388

Linking Leeds is the city-wide social prescribing service for people in Leeds, aged 16 years and over. Social prescribing can help you access a range of local non-medical services or activities to improve your health or wellbeing. Contact your GP surgery about being referred, or you can self-refer by completing a form on their website. Web: www.commlinks.co.uk/linking-leeds Tel 0113 336 7612.

Live Well Leeds is a community-based mental health support service for people in Leeds aged 18 and over who have mild to moderate mental health support needs. The service is continuing to provide support through telephone sessions, online support groups, and referrals to sources of food and other practical help. If you're registered with a Leeds GP, you can self-refer to the service at www.livewellleeds.org.uk Tel: 0113 219 2727

Talk to a GP - they can support you and give advice on the best next steps to take. GP surgeries are still open during the coronavirus outbreak, but the majority of consultations have been moved to telephone or video consultations. Face-to-face appointments are still offered where absolutely necessary with patients being advised accordingly. In addition, any practices that previously provided same-day walk-in appointments have suspended this option. You can find out more in a short Youtube video.

The Market Place provides a range of free and confidential mental health support services to young people aged 11-25 years old. It's currently operating a daily telephone support service between 2-6pm, seven days a week. To access telephone support please book your 20 minute slot one day in advance on The Market Place website: www.themarketplaceleeds.org.uk

Online support - many organisations such as Leeds Mind are offering online support sessions, peer support, community groups and workshops which you can access from your own home. Find out more here.

Support for Frontline staff

Our Frontline is for health, care, emergency and key workers working in the frontline against the coronavirus and offers:

  • A free wellbeing support helpline 0300 131 7000, operated by the Samaritans and available from 7am – 11pm seven days a week, providing confidential listening from trained professionals and specialist advice - including coaching, bereavement care, mental health and financial help. NHS staff can call for support, signposting and confidential listening.
  • A 24/7 text alternative to the above helpline - NHS staff can simply text FRONTLINE to 85258 for a confidential text conversation with a trained volunteer.
  • An online toolkit for resources, tips and ideas to look after your mental health.

Covid Calm are free short daily stress management clinics on Zoom. Easy to access, quick mindfulness stress-busters and confidential discussion. Web: www.covidcalm.org

Frontline 19 Emotional Support is a free service for frontline staff directly affected by Covid-19 and in needs of support. It's quick, easy and absolutely free of charge. Web: www.frontline19.com

How can I find support for a bereavement?

The Covid-19 support line is available to anyone in Leeds with family members or friends who are critically ill or who have died from Covid-19. The support line is staffed by bereavement workers who are able to listen if you need someone to talk to, provide emotional support and signpost your to other resources if needed. It's open Monday-Friday, 9am-4pm (not bank holidays) and is run by St Gemma's Hospice 0113 218 5544 and Wheatfields Hospice 0113 203 3369 (you can call either number).

Leeds Bereavement Forum offers information about bereavement and can signpost you to the most appropriate local service. They have created a Covid-19 information page with bereavement links and resources. You can contact them by calling 0113 225 3975 and leave a message for them to pick up and reply to you.

Leeds Cruse Bereavement Care provides support for bereaved people aged over 18 to help them understand their grief and cope with their loss. They are currently offering telephone support only. You can call them on 0113 234 4150 and leave a voicemail or email leeds@cruse.org.uk

Leeds Suicide Beravement Service (LSBS) provides one-to-one, group and family support and counselling to those who have lost someone through suicide. The service is still accepting and offering one-to-one support remotely during this time, please complete a referral form on their website. All groups and workshops are postponed right now. Tel: 0113 305 5800. Web: www.leedssbs.org.uk

What support is available for Leeds carers?

If you're helping a friend or family member due to their illness, mental health or a substance misuse problem then you're an unpaid carer. Carers Leeds advice line is open as usual: Tel 0113 380 4300 on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 9am-4.30pm and Wednesday 8am-6.30pm. You can also email the advice line advice@carersleeds.org.uk for support during these times. Carers Leeds are continuing to take referrals and are keeping in contact with carers on phone/email. All drop-ins and other face-to-face activities are cancelled until further notice.

Where can I find help for an alcohol, drugs or gambling problem?

Forward Leeds is the alcohol and drug service for adults, young people and families. The service is still taking referrals via the usual routes, call 0113 887 2477 or tel info@forwardleeds.co.uk. Staff are providing support over the phone/on Skype. Check the Forward Leeds website for latest service information. The 5 WAYS team at Forward Leeds has created an online timetable of activities, including check-ins using Zoom. They also have a toolbox of resources, videos and downloads.

Leeds Community Gambling Service (LCGS) and the NHS Northern Gambling Service (based in Leeds) offer free advice, support and treatment to individuals, families and communities affected by gambling. LCGS works in partnership with the NHS Northern Gambling Service, which provides specialist addiction therapy and recovery to people affected by gambling addiction across the North of England. Both services continue to accept referrals. As per Covid-19 restrictions, advice, support and treatment are being provided online (eg video call) and by telephone. Tel 0113 388 6466 (Monday-Friday 9am-5pm). You can access a referral form at www.gamcare.org.uk/leeds Tel: 0300 3001490 Email: referral.ngs@nhs.net.

Out of hours, you can call the National Gambling Helpline on 0808 8020 133. Open 24 hours a day.


How can I find support for domestic abuse or violence at home?

If you feel at risk of abuse, it's important to remember that there is help and support available to you. You are not alone.

Leeds Domestic Violence Service helpline is open 24 hours a day for confidential support, information and access to emergency accommodation for women and men experiencing violence, fear or abuse at home. Call 0113 246 0401. If calling is unsafe, a webchat service is now being offered from Monday-Friday between 1-3pm. If you're in immediate danger, call 999 (press 55 after the emergency number if you're in danger and unable to speak).

National Domestic Abuse Helpline - freephone, open 24/7. Tel: 0808 2000 247. Website provides guidance and support for potential victims, as well as those who are worried about friends and loved ones. Web: www.nationaldahelpline.org.uk

The government has issued information about domestic abuse and coronavirus.

How can I find support for a sexual assault?

Victim Support offers confidential emotional or practical support with any crime that you've experienced. Victim Support is independent of the police and the helpline is open 24 hours a day on 0808 168 9111.

Support After Rape & Sexual Violence Leeds (SARSVL) offers support to all women and girls who have been affected by sexual violence, of any kind, at any time in their lives. The helpline free phone support service is closed for now, but service remains open for text 0786 002 2880 and email support@sarsvl.org.uk support. There may be a slightly delayed response time as staff will be replying to emails and texts on Tuesdays and Wednesdays only. Go to the news section on www.supportafterrapeleeds.org.uk for the latest information.

For emotional support you can also contact the Rape Crisis National Helpline on 0808 802 9999, open between 12-2.30pm and 7-9.30pm every day or through their web chat

Survivors West Yorkshire provides support to men and women who have been affected by sexual violence. They are currently supporting people using email and text messaging.

Children who don't feel safe at home can contact ChildLine on 0800 1111 or the NSPCC 0800 800 5000.


How can I find support, if I or someone I care about, self-harms?

Self-harm is when someone hurts themselves, on purpose, as a way of coping with or releasing strong emotions that feel overwhelming. MindWell has tools to help manage self-harm including the Calm Harm mobile phone app, and information about support including Battle Scars, a Leeds charity supporting people who self-harm and their families or friends. All of their face-to-face services including groups are suspended until further notice but support is available through their online Facebook group.

How can I find emotional or crisis support during the coronavirus outbreak?

A mental health crisis often means that you no longer feel able to cope or be in control of your situation. If you're feeling very distressed or hopeless it's important to know that you're not alone.

Support is available although some services are adapting the way they offer support at this time:

Helplines and services offering listening and emotional support

Samaritans is open 24/7 to talk about whatever you're going through. Tel: 116 123 (free phone).

Connect Helpline offers emotional support to people in Leeds every night 6pm-2am. Connect is open as normal, but is experiencing high demand so a call back cannot be 100% guaranteed every night. Please be patient, they will always do their best to get back to you. Tel: 0808 800 1212 (free phone) or go to www.lslcs.org.uk/connect-helpline for online chat.

Teen Connect is for anyone aged 11-18 years old. Tel: 0808 800 1212, text 0771 566 1559 or go to www.lslcs.org.uk/teen-connect for online chat. Open 3.30pm-2am on weekdays and 6pm-2am on Saturdays and Sundays.

Connect BSL Helpline is on Mondays at 7pm-11pm, facetime/skype/glide with BSL trained staff. Tel: 07500 870 987.

British Red Cross Cross Coronavirus Support Line for anyone who is self-isolating and needs someone to talk to. Chat to a friendly Red Cross volunteer for emotional support, links to local organisations who may be able to help and information and practical advice. The British Red Cross can help you if you'll be without contact for 12 weeks, especially if you're not connected with other organisations or support networks. Call 0808 196 3651 between 10am-6pm, open every day. Calls are free and confidential.

Our Frontline is for health, care, emergency and key workers working in the frontline against the coronavirus and offers:

  • A free wellbeing support helpline 0300 131 7000, operated by the Samaritans and available from 7am – 11pm seven days a week, providing confidential listening from trained professionals and specialist advice - including coaching, bereavement care, mental health and financial help. NHS staff can call for support, signposting and confidential listening.
  • A 24/7 text alternative to the above helpline - NHS staff can simply text FRONTLINE to 85258 for a confidential text conversation with a trained volunteer.
  • An online toolkit for resources, tips and ideas to look after your mental health.

The Mix offers free emotional support and information to young people under 25 years old. They also offer support via text message, email and online chat. Tel: 0808 808 4994. Web: www.themix.org.uk

The Silver Line is a free confidential helpline, open 24/7, for older people which offers information, friendship and advice at any time of the day or night. Tel: 0800 470 80 90.
Web: www.thesilverline.org.uk/

Go to www.mindwell-leeds.org.uk/help to find more helplines to support people experiencing a range of different issues.

Well-bean Hope in a Crisis Cafe is for people in crisis (aged 16 and over), open seven nights a week from 6pm-12am. It's currently operating all one-to-one support over the phone and face-to-face support via Zoom (like Facetime and Skype) which can be downloaded free of charge on any android phone. You can download Zoom from the App store/play store for your phone, tablet or computer. (The team can talk you through this when you call). The Crisis café staff will assess your needs, at the point of referral, to the “Touchstone Loves Food Project" if you are unable to access food. If you wish to make a referral please call: self referral (07760 173476); professional referral (07760 173505).
Web: www.touchstonesupport.org.uk/well-bean-cafe-hope-in-a-crisis

Dial House is a Leeds service that offers one-to-one support for people in crisis (16 and over). It's currently open for telephone and Zoom crisis support only, Friday-Monday and Wednesday, 6pm–2am. Staff are picking up the telephone all night (this is a change from recent practice of only taking referral calls up to 9.30pm). That means, you can call much later at night on 0113 260 9328 and a trained crisis support worker will be able to speak to you for up to one hour. Alternatively, text them on 07922 249 452. They are offering video support via Zoom (like Facetime and Skype), also for up to an hour. It's very easy to use. Once you have downloaded it, they do all the technical stuff.
Web: www.lslcs.org.uk/dial-house

Dial House @ Touchstone offers support for people from Black & Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds (16 and over). At the moment it's open for telephone crisis support only on Tuesday and Thursday, 6pm-12am. Tel 0113 249 4675 or text 07763 581 853. Refugees and asylum seekers welcome.
Web: www.lslcs.org.uk/dial-house-touchstone

Any Dial House/Dial House@Touchstone visitors who feel they'll be really affected by not having access to face-to-face support can email survivor.led@lslcs.org.uk. A manager will contact you to talk about alternative ways they can support you through this period of public health crisis.

Help from the NHS

Ring NHS 111 (open 24/7) if you, or someone you know, needs urgent care but it's not life threatening. Or talk online at www.111.nhs.uk

Talk to a GP - ask for an emergency appointment with the first available GP. A GP can talk to you about your mental health and refer you to another service if necessary.

Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (LYPFT)'s Crisis Resolution Intensive Support Service (CRISS) provides assessment and intensive support to adults aged 18-65 years who are experiencing a mental health crisis. It's open 24/7, every day. If you need help urgently call the LYPFT Single Point of Access (SPA) on 0300 300 1485.

What if I'm already receiving care from LYPFT? You should have contact details for your Care Co-ordinator, or another health professional, in your crisis/safety plan who you can contact initially. However, if they're not available and you need help urgently call the LYPFT SPA on 0300 300 1485.

If you are at risk of taking your life call 999 for an ambulance or go to A&E.

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