If you are reading this because you are having suicidal thoughts, try to ask someone for help. It may be difficult at this time, but it's important to know that you are not beyond help and you're not alone.

Whatever you're going through, call the Samaritans free anytime, from any phone on 116 123. They are available 24hours a day, 365 days a year.

If you need medical support and feel it can't wait until your GP surgery re-opens you can call 111 - the NHS non-emergency number. It's free from any phone.

If it's an emergency, call an ambulance using 999.

NHS Choices provides a list of services that can help if you're feeling suicidal.


Offers a free Stay Alive app which offers help and support both to people with thoughts of suicide and to people concerned about someone else.

Staying Safe

Offers free resources for anyone distressed, thinking about suicide or worried about someone they care about. It provides Safety Plan guidance tools, with easy to print/online templates and guidance video tutorials purposefully designed to help people through the process of writing their own Safety Plan. 

The Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM)

A charity dedicated to preventing male suicide. You can call their free and anonymous helpline 0800 58 58 58 or use their web chat, 5pm-12am every day.


A confidential support and advice service for anyone under the age of 35 who might be having thoughts of suicide. You can call 0800 068 41 41, text 07786209697 or email pat@papyrus-uk.org. Opening hours are 10am-10pm weekdays, 2pm-10pm weekends, and 2pm-5pm Bank Holidays. 

Two local services that offer support for those affected by suicide are Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide (SOBS) and The Red Lipstick Foundation. There is also a national service Support After Suicide

Local mental health and wellbeing groups 

Portsmouth Interaction

This service offers sports activities for adults experiencing mental ill health, including swimming, walks, table tennis, tennis, snooker, gym sessions, bowling and allotment or conservation sessions.

Email: Kerry.morgan@bhlive.org.uk Telephone: 023 9320 0369 

SAD Portsmouth

Provides a free support group for individuals dealing with stress, anxiety and depression. Friend and family of those suffering from these illnesses are also welcome. Visit their Facebook page or email info@sadportsmouth.co.uk

The Recovery College

The Solent Recovery College offers a unique learning experience for people with mental health issues. It offers a variety of courses which are delivered in partnership between Solent Mind Peer Trainers, who all have their own lived experience of mental health issues, and Solent NHS Trust Adult Mental Health Trainers who bring learned experience of managing mental health and wellbeing. For more information contact Emma Dunbar on SRC@Solentmind.org.uk or 07769 647 168.

Tonic: Music for Mental Health

Tonic raises awareness and challenges the stigma often associated with mental illness through music and art based events. They organise music workshops, gigs, art groups, and community projects throughout the year for people experiencing mental health problems. Find out more on Facebook or email tonicmusicmh@gmail.com.

The Wellbeing Centre (Solent MIND)

The Portsmouth Wellbeing Centre in Southsea is a friendly, welcoming place where people can share their experiences, support one another and learn techniques to improve their wellbeing. Many of their activities are run by people who have experienced mental health issues themselves. Take a look at their leaflet and their activity timetable

The Good Mental Health Cooperative

Hold local activities and have resources on their site to help you learn to look after you mental health: www.goodmentalhealth.org.uk

Adult mental health support 

If you are worried or concerned about how you are feeling, the first place to go is your GP. Your GP will be able to assess if you would benefit from more specialised support or be supported by them.

Talking Change

We are a team of psychotherapists and researchers who specialise in teh understanding and treatment of common emotional difficulties.

If you've been struggling with low mood or anxiety, or with a physical condition such as chronic pain or fatigue, our talking therapies can help you cope and feel better. We also provide support at work, and elp towards finding employment or training.

We offer a free and confidential service, and we can see you in medical practices all over Portsmouth. You can access Talking Change if you're aged sixteen or over, if you live in Portsmouth and you're registered with a docctor in the city.

You can self-refer by calling 0300 123 3934 or by visiting our website.


You can talk to Mind to get information on things like:

  • types of mental health problem
  • where to get help
  • medication and alternative treatments

They will also look for details of help and support in your local area. 

Contact them 9am - 6pm Monday-Friday (except bank holidays)

0300 123 3393
Text: 86463


The Rethink Mental Illness Advice Service offers practical help on issues such as the Mental Health Act, community care, welfare benefits, debt, criminal justice and carers rights. They also offer general help on living with mental illness, medication, care and treatment.

Call 0300 5000 927 weekdays 9.30am - 4pm.


If you're struggling with an eating disorder, Beat can help. Call their Helpline 0808 801 0677, 4-10pm daily, or email help@b-eat.co.uk


This website has proven self-help resources on a wide range of mental health problems.


This organisation helps people affected by Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Call 0845 120 3778, weekdays 9am - 5pm or email support@ocduk.org

Free online cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and life skills courses

Steps for Stress - Practical ways to start dealing with stress: www.stepsforstress.org

NHS tested apps and online tools that support your mental health: https://apps.beta.nhs.uk/?category=Mental%20Health#!

Living Life to the Full - Free online courses covering low mood and stress: www.llttf.com

Moodscope - provides a way to monitor and record your daily activities and mood levels. There's a light version which is free: www.moodscope.com

Helpguide.org - helps you to better mental and emotional health through free guides and tools on a wide range of topics like loss, sleep, stress and relationship break-ups: www.helpguide.org

Self-help apps - find a useful list of CBT apps that you can access on different phones: https://www.getselfhelp.co.uk//links2.htm

Five Ways To Wellbeing - the New Economics Foundation has developed five practical ways to keep yourself mentally well. If you've got an android phone you can also access an app where you can reflect on your wellbeing, set activities to help you improve your wellbeing and track your progress. Download it in Google Play.

Local services and groups

The Central Library in Guildhall Square has a Wellbeing Zone on the first floor with information on emotional wellbeing. You can also find reading well collections in Portsmouth libraries containing self-help and mood boosting books.

The Independence and Wellbeing team offer a range of social groups and activities that can help you avoid feeling lonely.

The Carers Centre offers a variety of support for carers, including those who look after someone with a mental illness.

Southsea Sangha is an open and welcoming meditation group. 

Southsea Mindfulness offer taster sessions, courses and retreats in mindfulness - a way of paying attention so that we can see clearly what is happening from moment to moment (i.e sensations, thoughts, and emotions) and can then respond better to the demands of life and the challenges that we may face.

Gardening and growing food can be a way to boost mental wellbeing and the city has 1400 allotments at 11 sites as well as a community one and community orchard. You can find out more about these here.

KROMA is a group for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and alternative (LGBT+) communities and can support with mental health. They meet every Saturday from 11am - 1pm in Costa Coffee next to Portsmouth and Southsea train station.

The Learning Place in Derby Road, North End, runs a variety of courses that can help you meet new people, learn new skills - or improve existing ones, or take up a new hobby. Many courses are free. Visit their Facebook page or contact them to find out more: thelearningplace@portsmouthcc.gov.uk / 02392 621860.

If money worries are getting you down, you can find lots of advice on our money advice page.

Young people mental health support 

Young people aged 11-25 in Portsmouth can access free counselling through the U Matter service. This provides confidential support on a range of issues including bullying, bereavement, relationships, school worries and problems at home.

The counselling takes place at the Relate Centres in Southsea or Cosham and can include family sessions if required. They also offer peer support groups where you can meet other young people who have gone through similar challenges.

Call 023 9282 7026

Email relate@relateportsmouth.org.uk.

Visit the Relate Centre, 58d High Street, Cosham:

Monday to Thursday: 9:30am - 9.00pm

Friday: 9:30am - 2.30pm

Saturday: 9:00am - 1.30pm


CAMHS stands for the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service. It's available to help children and young people when they are having problems to do with their emotional and behavioural wellbeing. Your GP refers you to this service.


Childline offer lots of mental health advice. You can also call them for free on 0800 1111, have a 1-2-1 counsellor chat or send an email if you sign up for an account - you don’t need to give your name or email address.

Young Minds

This charity has information on some of the common feelings and mental health symptoms, how to cope, and where to get help: https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/feelings-and-symptoms/

The Mix

Offering confidential, free support to under 25's on any challenges they're facing.

Call 0800 808 4994 11am - 11pm every day

Email - they try to respond in 24 hours

1-2-1 chat

Rise Above

A website with stories, videos and advice from young people on topics like body image, relationships, mental health and friendships riseabove.org.uk


If you're struggling with an eating disorder, Beat can help. Call their Youthline 0808 801 0711, 4-10pm daily, or email fyp@b-eat.co.uk.  


This organisation helps people affected by Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Call 0845 120 3778, weekdays 9am - 5pm or email support@ocduk.org

University Applications Guide

guide produced with the Mental Health Foundation to help remove the stress and anxiety from applying to University. 

Advice and support for parents/carers


If you're feeling anxious or down during pregnancy or after having a baby then the Respond programme can help.

They run lots of different activities from Eastney Community Centre and Highbury Community Centre. All are free and there's a crèche provided.

They also offer a 7 week course. Find out more.

Young Minds

This charity runs a Parents Helpline to offer advice to anyone worried about a child or young person under 25. Call 0808 802 5544 for freeweekdays 9.30am - 4pm.


This has a section dedicated to families and can help if you're worried about your child and want advice on understanding and supporting them.


They offer lots of information if you're supporting someone with a mental health problem.

Time to Change

They've produced a range of videos and tips on talking with your child about mental health.


If you're worried that a young person is having suicidal thoughts, HOPELineUK can advise on the best way to support them.

Call: 0800 068 41 41

Text: 07786209697

Email: pat@papyrus-uk.org

Opening hours are 10am-10pm weekdays, 2pm-10pm weekends, and 2pm-5pm Bank Holidays. 

A guide for parents and carers on self-harm

Oxford University have produced a free guide for parents and carers who have discovered a young person's self-harm. It provides information about the causes and effects of self-harm and includes advice from parents whose children have self-harmed plus links to sources of help. 

Advice and support for professionals 

Young Minds

This charity runs a helpline to offer advice to anyone worried about a child or young person under 25. Call 0808 802 5544 for free, weekdays 9.30am - 4pm.


CAMHS have created a booklet for professionals to provide you with information about how they can support you in your work with children and young people who have a range of emotional and mental health needs. It also provides details about the specialist services that CAMHS deliver and how to access them.


If you're worried that a young person is having suicidal thoughts, HOPELineUK can advise on the best way to support them.

Call: 0800 068 41 41

Text: 07786209697

Email: pat@papyrus-uk.org

Opening hours are 10am-10pm weekdays, 2pm-10pm weekends, and 2pm-5pm Bank Holidays. 


This site offers e-learning on mental health for people working with children and young people.

Time to Change

This site provides resources to support you in creating an open, supportive culture around mental health with the young people you work with.

A toolkit for schools and colleges

Public Health England and the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families have created a toolkit for schools and colleges on measuring and monitoring children and young people's mental wellbeing.

A toolkit for businesses on suicide prevention

Several organisations have joined together to produce a guide for employers on reducing the risk of suicide and a crisis management guide in the event of a suicide.