Cathartic Interview: TADS, Barnsley.


Today at Cathartic, we are pleased to be speaking to Karen Mitchell, the Project Manager and a Complementary Therapist for Therapies for Anxiety, Depression & Stress (TADS). TADS are based in Barnsley, South Yorkshire


Funding from The Big Lottery, has enabled TADS to open a Young People’s Emotional Wellbeing Centre in Barnsley. They aim to provide emotional support through complementary therapies to young people suffering from Mental Health issues.  A drop in service is offered on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday between 3.30PM to 5.30PM. TADS also provide Free Complimentary Therapies and also offer a 5 week workshop on skills to manage Mental Health.


What is the story or inspiration that lead to the creation of TADS?

I worked as an Education Welfare Officer for 10 years and regularly met young people struggling with Mental Health issues, that prevented them from attending any social activities, including school. On a voluntary basis I worked as a complementary therapist and knew this could help young people but obviously I couldn't work in this way with clients. I decided to form a voluntary organisation to offer free therapies to anyone suffering with Mental Health issues but can’t afford the costs associated with this. All our members have experienced Mental Health issues and understand the debilitating effects.


What specific issues does TADS provide support for?

We see young people struggling to manage Anxiety, Stress, Depression, Anger (veiled Mental Health issues) and Loss.


How many people are involved in working for TADS?

We have four committee members, a manager, two part time admin support, two sessional complementary therapists, four sessional workers and five volunteers.


Are there any key campaigns for fundraising currently running that you would like to highlight to our readers?

We are always looking for funding to provide extra therapies.  If you are interested in helping us with funding or volunteering as a Therapist then please get in touch.


What challenges does your organisation face and how have you overcome them?

We have more referrals coming in than we can offer 1:1 therapies for. Camhs have a huge waiting list and their resources are very tight. We can only provide free therapies to 11 to 18 year olds but are having a massive request for younger children. We are now in a position to offer sessions to primary schools in our area but we are having to charge for this service, so many children will miss out on our services due to funding constraints.

Are there any success stories that you would like to share, something that has made you proud to be doing the work that you do?

We opened in October 2015 and have seen 70 young people up to the end of January 2016. Our drop in clients have changed significantly for the better since visiting us. Comments such as 'I now have friends', 'I feel like I have a new family', 'my panic attacks are less frequent now', 'I love TADS' are just some of the comments we receive regularly.


How can people support your cause or get involved with helping you?

Any donation. however small, is gratefully accepted via cheque to TADS, see our website for contact details. Volunteer therapists are welcomed and treated like royalty!


How can people contact you for support?

We can be found in the following places:

Website: Twitter: @tads123456

Confidential Text Messaging Service for Young People: 07541 301982

Contact Number: 01226 320122


At Cathartic, we are pleased to be highlighting the work that TADS are doing, providing vital support to young people who may be suffering with Mental Health issues.  They are a local organisation ensuring that important help is reaching those in the community who need it. We are pleased to be raising awareness of their work and hope that they receive the funding they need to provide support to all those that need it.