We have support services for young people who are facing difficulties.

We can support you if you're:

  • 11 to 19 years old
  • up to 25 years old if you have special educational needs or disability (SEND)
  • up to 25 years old if you're a care leaver

We can support you if you aren't in, or you risk missing:

  • education
  • employment
  • training

We can help you back into education, employment or training. Find out how we work with Ansbury Guidance to do this.

There are also a number of options for education and training after 16 years old.

Tips for applying to higher education

Organisations that can support you

Mental health and wellbeing support

These organisations give free advice and support:

  • LiveWell Dorset: a free service for people who want to improve their wellbeing
  • Kooth the online counselling and emotional well-being platform for children and young people
  • YoungMinds Child and adolescent mental health 
  • Mind: they can help you so you don't have to face a mental health problem alone
  • Time to Change: useful resources and advice to help with mental health problems
  • ChatHealth: confidential text messaging service for young people to anonymously get in touch with a healthcare professional for advice and support
  • REACH: drug and alcohol advice : offers support for people facing issues with addiction in Dorset
  • MOSAIC: charity that supports bereaved children and young people in Dorset
  • SPACE youth project: LGBTQ+ charity that runs regular, free youth groups across Dorset
  • Wessex Healthier Together website:help if you're a parent or carer and would like to know more about parenting tips, information about long-term illnesses or where to go if you feel your child is having problems with their emotions

Staying safe

Find out about staying safe, your rights and the law.

Find out about child exploitation and what to do if you think someone is being exploited

Alcohol and drugs misuse

Find support groups for alcohol and drugs misuse on our Family Information Directory.

Sexual health

Find support and advice about sexual health from these organisations:

Homelessness and housing

Find information about homelessness and housing advice for young people, including support for runaways

Find information to support you if you're in danger of being made homeless on our Family Information Directory.

Special educational needs and disability (SEND)

Our Local Offer section has information for children and young people with SEND and their families. 

Find out what help is available on our Local Offer.

Support for Young Carers

If you're under 18 years old and look after another person at home, you may be a young carer. There are a number of ways we can help you.

Find out more information on our Young Carers webpage.

Local Offer for care leavers

Find advice and support from our Care Leavers team for anyone leaving Dorset Council care.

Managing your money

Find information to help you manage your money and where to go for support.