Kooth – Xenzone – (NCCMH)

Kooth is a fully accredited counselling service with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy, provided by XenZone. It is commissioned across 48 local authority areas in England for young people aged 11 to 19 (25 in some areas). They provide online counselling and support delivered in web-based chat rooms, and/or 1:1 messaging accessed via any internet connected device. Kooth also provide: pre-moderated peer support forums (static); live chat (group) forums; a mental health magazine; self-help tools, and goal-based journals

Co-Production

  • From start: No
  • During process: Yes
  • In evaluation: No

Evaluation

  • Peer: No
  • Academic: Yes
  • PP Collaborative: No

Find out more

Kooth is a fully accredited counselling service with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy, provided by XenZone. It is commissioned across 48 local authority areas in England for young people aged 11 to 19 (25 in some areas).  They provide online counselling and support delivered in web-based chat rooms, and/or 1:1 messaging accessed via any internet connected device. Kooth also provide: pre-moderated peer support forums (static); live chat (group) forums; a mental health magazine; self-help tools, and goal-based journals

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Access

Kooth provide an open access service with all children and young people in commissioned areas and age groups able to sign up to service. The service is open for professional support 365 days per year 12-10pm at weekdays, and 6-10pm on weekends and bank holidays.

 

Collaborative working

Kooth is primarily an early support service, however staff are also equipped to work with some of the more complex problems that get presented to the online service. Kooth operates in a joined-up way to ensure they are part of wider local care pathways with health, social care and education. For instance, in Cornwall, Kooth work as part of Learning Partnership Cornwall, an umbrella organization with 3 other voluntary sector agencies, and deliver face to face counselling as part of a CCG waiting list initiative, while in Halton they deliver early intervention, and are co-located and share the same processes with CAMHS. Kooth also works with schools and other agencies to provide in-reach and emotional resilience programmes to promote and educate young people, teachers and other professionals on the benefits of online support and therapy.

 

Outcome monitoring

Kooth collects routine outcome measurement data from its usage of CYP-IAPT compliant session by session measures such as YP-CORE, Goal based Outcomes, and End of Session Questionnaires that capture therapeutic alliance.

 

Online and digital platforms

Kooth aim to improve and enhance mental health services by enabling them to complement traditional interventions with the use of technology. They have been involved in several research projects on how best to deliver online counseling and now with the Children’s Society they are developing a blended digital and face-to-face model for providing mental health services for vulnerable children and young people. In Cornwall, XenZone are working with Cornwall Council on their Headstart Digital programme and have helped develop a strategy to ‘tidy up’ the digital landscape to ensure young people can have the information and support they need online.  With MindEd they have launched an Online Risk and Resilience Resource for professionals to help them better understand how to support young people in this aspect of their lives.

 

What makes this service an example of positive practice?

The Kooth approach mirrors the Thrive model, providing a supportive space where young people can learn to cope and build resilience, through to getting help to being able to talk about risk and getting more help. These last two aspects of the Thrive model spell out why it’s important Kooth has links with other parts of the health, education and social care model. Kooth works closely with schools, GPs, CAMHS and other local organisations to ensure that Kooth is recognised as part of the local pathway, and is available to all CYP, with no requirement to meet particular “entry thresholds”. Kooth works alongside traditional services, offering online out of hours’ support for children and young people on waiting lists or for those who do not meet referral thresholds. As a self-referral service, Kooth offers young people the choice and autonomy they need, while providing an easy route to face-to- face counselling and other local services.

Further details

Commissioning Local authorities and/or CCGs
ProvidersXenZone
Workforce (WTE)1.6 counselling psychologists

44 therapists or counsellors

14 integration and participation workers

7 emotional wellbeing practitioners

6 media workers

Various managers

CaseloadIn 2016, 46,000 young people logged in to access some element of the service. The number of contacts varies – some use professional support 1 to 3 times, some 4-8 sessions or a few use 8+
 
Prevention and resilience – universal and early intervention for at risk  
Access and advice – consultation lines, triage and signpostings
Early support and brief interventions
 

 

 

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