Parent support and courses

  • Bristol City Council Free parenting courses run on a rolling timetable and are designed to help you cope with parenting challenges from babies through to teens. Scroll down to the end of the document to find courses for parenting a child with autism.
  • FLORA provides information, advice and signposting for Bristol families with children who may have additional needs
  • Off-The-Record Parent Pack and other resources for parents whose children are struggling with mental health problems
  • The Bridge Therapy Group: supporting parents of young people struggling with their mental health or of neurodivergent children under 12 years old. No diagnosis is necessary. A safe space to talk to other parents. Minimum donation £10.
  • Netmums have online courses for parents in three parts under the headings of “Getting the Best, Stopping the Worst and Families Together”. You need to be a Netmums member to sign up


Free and low-cost counselling

  • Network Counselling from the age of 11 years. The suggested donation is £25 a session (or more) but can be less depending on what you can afford.
  • Wellspring Counselling from age 11-18 years on a donation basis and low cost for 18+years
  • Maybe Southwest offer counselling for adults and children – prices according to what you can afford and they also have therapeutic Art Groups for young people aged 9- 14 years.
  • Off The Record  Drop-in support and counselling for 11-17 yrs . OTR also have a drop-in parents and carers group in Bristol once a week for anyone looking after a teenager with a mental health issue.
  • Heart to Heart Counselling Low cost counselling for young people from age 12 years.
  • The Bridge Foundation This charity provides family and child counselling: there is a sliding scale of charges depending on family income.
  • Meeting Minds Counselling via Bristol Mind for 18+ years.
  • Relate Avon family counselling services are available (charges apply) The national Relate website is also fantastic with advice on topics like “talking to your child about an unreliable parent” and so many other common problems.
  • Ignite-LIfe provides counselling for disadvantaged young people in Bristol
  • Brook Clinic offers counselling on any topic, not just relationships and sexual health, up to the age of 25 years.
  • Affordable Talk is based in Cardiff but also offers online counselling for over 18’s in other areas.

Other mental health charities

  • Empire Fighting Chance: a Bristol and Wales-based  charity that offers a combination of non-contact boxing and personal support to support young people age 8-25 years. They accept direct referrals and also through schools. They work in schools and offer both 1-2-1 and group work, careers support and psychological support.
  • Somerset and Wessex Eating Disorders Association (SWEDA) – great website, helpline and, if you live in the area, you may be able to access low-cost counselling and group support. They also have a support service for students attending local colleges.
  • Bourne Family Project is a charity that offers low-cost counselling for children and adults, as well as a forest school holiday club and play therapy. They are a Christian charity but will see anyone regardless of religion.,
  • Birch Collective, Outdoor activities for free getting you in touch with nature to combat loneliness aimed at 18-25 years. 

Drug and alcohol support

  • Bristol Drugs Project for information and support on drugs and alcohol with a section for those under 18.For parents of young adults, they offer a parent support worker.

LBGTQ+ Support

Private counselling options

  • Private psychological services for children and young people in Bristol This includes ADHD and autism spectrum disorder assessments.
  • Maybe Southwest are an independent charity that offers counselling for adults and young people on a sliding scale. If you can afford to pay full fees, you will be subsidising others who can’t afford it. They offer different types of therapy depending on your needs and are back to offering face-to-face counselling. They also offer art therapy.
  • Bristol Child Parent support. A private therapist with many years of NHS experience. The website and blog have some useful tips even if you don’t want to pay for counselling.
  • The Priory Group offer some counselling and therapy for young people