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Sir Norman Lamb visits Southwark’s mental health hub for young people

28 January 2022

This week The Nest welcomed the Children and Young People’s Mental Health Coalition, their chair Sir Norman Lamb and Councillor Jasmine Ali.

They sat down together at the service’s drop-in centre on Rye Lane to discuss The Nest as an established early support hub. These hubs are where young people can get mental health support as soon as their problems first emerge, without the need for a professional referral or long wait.

Sir Norman and the coalition team were keen to see an early support hub in action to help inform their Fund the Hubs campaign. The campaign is calling on the Government to invest in a network of early support hubs across the country. Existing hubs like The Nest could reach even more young people with consistent, long-term funding from the Government too.

The Fund the Hubs campaign launched last summer, headed up by the coalition and charities such as Mind, YoungMinds and The Children’s Society. Southwark recently became the first local council to publicly pledge its support to the campaign, inspired by The Nest’s success.

Of the young people who have received longer term therapeutic support through The Nest:

  • Two thirds said they felt more confident
  • 73 per cent said they felt happier
  • 78 per cent described an increased sense of wellbeing

Cllr Jasmine Ali, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Education, said: “Even before the pandemic, too many young people had nowhere to turn when they first started struggling with their mental health. Through seeing The Nest’s positive impact on young people’s lives, we believe early support hubs are the answer.

“We are proud to be working so closely with the Children and Young People’s Mental Health Coalition and the other Fund the Hubs campaigners. It was fantastic to get everyone down to The Nest to look around, share best practice, and discuss how we strengthen our collective calls on the Government. They owe it to young people in Southwark and across the country to act now and invest in early support hubs.”

Sir Norman Lamb, Chair of the Children and Young People’s Mental Health Coalition, said: “We have been proud to be part of the Fund the Hubs campaign, and The Nest provides the perfect example why services of this kind provide a lifeline to children and young people struggling to get the support they need with their mental health.

“Southwark has shown real commitment in ensuring that children and young people can access early support in their local community. However, this is not replicated across the country. We look forward to working with The Nest and Southwark Council as part of the Fund the Hubs campaign to make sure that all children and young people, no matter where they live, can access an early support hub.”

Hannah Kashman, Service Manager at The Nest, said: “As The Nest opens its doors for a face-to-face drop-in service where young people can come by with or without an appointment, the need for easy to access to mental health support has never been more apparent. We are delighted that Southwark Council is supporting the Fund the Hubs Campaign and hope that other boroughs can look to The Nest as evidence for the need to try new and innovative ways of supporting the mental health of children and young people.”

Launched in May 2020, the Nest is funded by the council and delivered by the charity Groundwork London. The service is a key component of the council’s commitment that 100 per cent of their children and young people have access to mental health support.

For more information about mental health support in Southwark for children and young people, call free on 020 8138 1805 or visit

Page last updated: 28 January 2022

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