Minding Your Mental Health During COVID-19

Infectious disease outbreaks like coronavirus (COVID-19), can be worrying. The spread of coronavirus is a challenging event and this is a concerning time for many women in Ireland.

Many women have to provide extra care for their families and loved ones during COVID19. The pandemic may be especially challenging for lone parents. Women in abusive relationships may be worried about their safety. Older women may be especially concerned about their health.

These circumstances can all impact our mental health. You may notice your anxiety increase, you may feel stressed, irritable, helpless or have trouble sleeping. Even though it might be difficult right now it is important to look after your own mental health.

There are many things you can do to mind your mental health during times like this.

Find information on minding your mental health during times like this on the HSE website.

Face-to-face services are limited at the moment because of the coronavirus outbreak. But a number of services are providing online and phone services. Find information on how to access services during this time including online counselling, phone and text services as well as online supports on the HSE website.

Keep up a healthy routine to your best ability during this time can be helpful. This might include:

Do you need to talk to someone now? Free call Samaritans on 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.ie

 

Reliable Information on COVID-19

The constant stream of social media updates and news reports about coronavirus could cause you to feel worried. Sometimes it can be difficult to separate facts from rumours. Use trustworthy and reliable sources to get your news. You can find reliable information and updates on COVID-19 here:

Updates from Department of Health.

Updates from HSE.

Updates from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre including guidance for healthcare workers

Easy to read document on COVID-19 from Inclusion Ireland here.

Easy to read guide to good hand washing practice from Inclusion Ireland here.

The HSE has translated public health information into 27 languages other than English and Irish, including but not limited to Arabic, Simplified Chinese, Farsi, Hindi and Polish.

Find the most up to date translated information resources for COVID-19 including the latest ‘Stay Safe, Protect Each Other’ posters here.  

 

Mental Health Services

Your GP can be your first contact if you have concerns about your mental health.

  • HSE YourMentalHealth, visit www.yourmentalhealth.ie for support and information. 
  • The Samaritans Emotional support to anyone in distress or struggling to cope. Freephone 116 123 every day 24 hours a day or email jo@samaritans.ie
  • Text 50808: A free 24/7 text service, providing everything from a calming chat to immediate support for people going through a mental health or emotional crisis. Text HELLO to 50808, anytime day or night.
  • HSE YourMentalHealth Information Line – 1800 111 888 The YourMentalHealth information line is a phone service you can call any time. A member of the team can tell you about the mental health supports and services available to you, how to access different services provided by the HSE and their funded partners, and opening hours.

St Patrick's Mental Health Services

St Patrick’s Mental Health Services have introduced a new homecare service for anyone referred for inpatient care, which will be delivered remotely to people in their homes. St Patrick’s Mental Health Services is an independent, not-for-profit mental health service provider.

Find more information on their services, referrals and support on their website.

 

Specific supports:

Women experiencing emotional, physical and sexual violence

If you feel in immediate danger please contact the Gardaí or call 999 or 112.

If you're worried someone might see you have been on this page, you can cover your tracks. Read advice from Woman's Aid about covering your tracks online here.

For many reasons, the home is often not a safe place for women experiencing domestic abuse, and this may be heightened during COVID-19. For women feeling worried about the impact of COVID-19 on emergency plans and their safety at home there are a number of supports available:

Women’s Aid

Providing free and confidential support to women experiencing domestic violence, family and friends and professionals supporting victims of abuse.

Women’s Aid can help you if you are experiencing emotional or physical domestic violence.

National Freephone Helpline, call 24 hours on 1800 341 900.

Text service for Deaf and Hard of Hearing women available daily on 087 959 7980.

National Helpline Instant Messaging Service available on www.womensaid.ie 7 nights a week from 7pm to 10pm. Additional hours during the Covid19 crisis include Monday to Friday 10am – 1pm and Saturday 12pm to 3pm and Sunday 11am – 1pm.  This service is run by a dedicated group of trained volunteers.   

Find more information on supports for domestic abuse, domestic violence orders and refuge spaces on the Women’s Aid website here.

Dublin Rape Crisis Centre

The National 24-Hour Freephone Rape Crisis Helpline 1800 77 88 88 will remain open for those who need to access crisis counselling and support.

DRCC Webchat is a free and confidential online support service for adults who have been raped, sexually assaulted, sexually harassed or sexually abused at any time in their lives. It is open to people from all over Ireland. Find more information on the webchat here.

Dublin Rape Crisis Centre are adjusting how they deliver their services during COVID-19. 

Find out about Dublin Rape Crisis Centre services on their website.

 

Women who are carers

Many women may be under added pressure to provide care for their families and older people during this time. This can cause anxiety and stress. It is important to look after your own mental health as well as your family’s health during this time.

One Family

OneFamily has a helpline for people parenting alone, sharing parenting, separating, or separating. Call 1890 66 2212 or 01 662 9212 or email info@onefamily.ie

Find more information on OneFamily services available during COVID-19.

Care Alliance Ireland

Care Alliance Ireland have set up an online family carer support group on Facebook. Please note you will need a Facebook account to access this private group. Join the support group here.

Find further information and available supports on Care Alliance Ireland website here.

Family Carers Ireland

Family Carers Ireland offers a confidential, friendly and supportive Careline. Freephone 1800 24 07 24

Find more information on Family Carers Ireland services and supports on their website.

Barnardos

Barnardos has launched a national telephone support service for parents in response to the challenges they are facing during the Covid-19 pandemic. This service will be staffed by Barnardos project workers who are trained professionals. Call 1800 910 123, 10am-2pm, Monday to Friday.

Find more supports on Barnardos website here.

 

Younger women

JigsawOnline

JigsawOnline provides mental health information for young people, their parents and guardians, and those who work with young people. Jigsaw offers a Live Chat service, AskJigsaw service and Online Group Chats for young people. You can also contact Jigsaw for support as follows:

Call 1800 JIGSAW (544729), Monday to Friday, 1pm- 5pm

Text 086 180 3880, text “call me” with your preferred day and time for a call, Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm

Email help@jigsaw.ie, you can email anytime, and clinicians will be responding from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

Find more information on JigsawOnline website here.

BodyWhys

Bodywhys is the national voluntary organisation supporting people affected by eating disorders.

Call BodyWhys Helpline on 01 2107906

Email BodyWhys support service at any time on alex@bodywhys.ie 

BodyWhysConnect is a free, online support group currently offered to people with eating disorders aged 19 years and over. Find out more information here.

YouthConnect is a free, online support group currently offered to people with eating disorders aged 13-18 years. Find out more information here.

Find more information on BodyWhys services, supports and resources for people with eating disorders and those who care for them on thei BodyWhys website here.

 

Older women

SeniorLine

SeniorLine is a FREEPHONE National confidential listening service for older people. Older callers can call free between 10am and 10pm every day of the year on 1800 804 591.

Find more information on supports for older people on the Third Age website.

ALONE

ALONE have launched a COVID-19 support line for older people, working in collaboration with the Department of Health and the HSE. Phone 0818 222 024 from 8am to 8pm.

Find more information about ALONE's services during COVID-19 on their website.

Alzheimer Society of Ireland

Due to the Covid-19 some services are suspended but ASI is still supporting people with dementia and their families as their National HelplineDementia AdvisersOnline Family Carer Training and Home Care are all still running. They have also introduced new online services and supports – Online Support Groups for Family CarersVirtual Alzheimer Cafe’s  and Alternative Activity Therapy.

Alzheimer National Helpline has a free Dementia Nurse and Dementia Adviser call-back service to deal with increased need during COVID-19 crisis. Call 1800 341 341.

Find further information on the above supports on Alzheimer Society of Ireland website. 

Age and Opportunity

Age & Opportunity have resources to support older people during the pandemic. For more information or support call 01 805 7709 or email info@ageandopportunity.ie

 

LGBTQI+ Women

Some LGBTQI+ women may feel isolated from their peers and chosen family. They might feel scared and anxious about the future. 

LGBT Ireland

LGBT Ireland have a helpline for LGBT people who need support as well as an instant chat support service and peer support groups. 

Call 1800 929 539 or visit www.lgbt.ie (They also offer a transgender family support line Sundays, 6pm to 9pm, Tuesdays, 10am to 12pm).

Transgender Equality Network Ireland

TENI have information for members of the transgender community on their website. They also have a directory of nationwide support.

Find information on the TENI website here.

BelongTo

BelongTo offers personal support for LGBTI+ young people from 14-23 years. BelongTo services are free and confidential and include informal one-on-one chat service, professional counselling and a drugs and alcohol support service. 

Find information on BelongTo services on their website here.

 

Women living with Eating Disorders

BodyWhys

Bodywhys is the national voluntary organisation supporting people affected by eating disorders.

Call BodyWhys Helpline on 01 2107906

Email BodyWhys support service at any time on alex@bodywhys.ie 

BodyWhysConnect is a free, online support group currently offered to people with eating disorders aged 19 years and over. Find out more information here.

YouthConnect is a free, online support group currently offered to people with eating disorders aged 13-18 years. Find out more information here.

Find more information on BodyWhys services, supports and resources for those caring for people with eating disorders on their website.

Self Care App

This is a support app for people with eating disorders and people who care for them. Find out more information and download the app here.

 

Women Living with Cancer

Together 4 Cancer Concern

Together for Cancer Concern has been launched by the National Cancer Control Programme, the Irish Cancer Society, and Cancer Care West to build a virtual community of care for people who are struggling with the emotional and psychological effects of living with cancer during this very challenging and uncertain time. 

The free service is available from anywhere in Ireland and can be accessed through the Irish Cancer Society’s Supportline Freephone 1800 200 700.

 

Women living with addiction

The HSE has a confidential freephone helpline for those seeking support, information, guidance and referral on anything to do with substance use and alcohol. You can phone the helpline on 1800 459 459 from Monday to Friday between 9:30 am and 5:30 pm or email them on helpline@hse.ie 

Find a list of addiction support services on the HSE website here.

Drugs.ie

The Drugs.ie service directory can help you find the contact details for local support services.

Find a local service here.

Find more information and supports on the Drugs.ie website.

Alcoholics Anonymous

Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism.

Find details about AA meetings on their website.

Narcotics Anonymous Ireland 

Narcotics Anonymous (NA) is a non-profit fellowship of men and women for whom drugs had become a major problem

Find details about Narcotics Anonymous meetings here.

Narcotics Anonymous International also provide online supports. 

Find details of international online supports here. 

SMART Recovery

SMART Recovery Online (SROL) is an online community where individuals with addiction, their Family & Friends, and other specialized audiences can interact with SMART Recovery volunteers and each other to aid in overcoming addiction.

Find details of their online groups here.

 

 

Crisis pregnancy and abortion services 

Abortion services will continue to be provided. 

You need to have a pre-abortion consultation before having an abortion. You can have this consultation over the phone or by video link. This is a temporary change during the coronavirus outbreak. If the doctor needs to see you in person, they will tell you.

HSE face-to-face services may not be available during the coronavirus outbreak. You may still be able to access counselling over the phone during this time. Please contact any of the services listed on the HSE website for further information. You can find their contact details here.

HSE MyOptions

HSE My Options provides support and information for those experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. The service continues to operate as normal during this time. Freephone 1800 828 010 or visit myoptions.ie

Dublin Well Woman Centre

Dublin Well Woman Centre provides support to women around crisis pregnancy, including Crisis or Unplanned Pregnancy Counselling, and After-Abortion Counselling. They also provide access to Early Medical Abortions for women. Well Woman Centre have made important changes to the ways they deliver care.

Find out how to access Well Woman Centre crisis pregnancy services here.

Irish Family Planning Association 

The Irish Family Planning Association (IFPA) is Ireland’s leading sexual health charity, providing Early Medical Abortion services and post abortion counselling. 

To support women and girls who are experiencing an unintended pregnancy or a pregnancy that has become a crisis during the Covid19 pandemic, the IFPA has launched a series of videos to assist women who need abortion care. Watch these videos on the IFPA website.

To protect the health and safety of their clients and staff, IFPA have made important changes to the ways they deliver care. 

Find out how to access IFPA crisis pregnancy services here. 

 

 

We are seeking to provide the most up to date and accurate information as possible. We are asking our members to send us information on services they are providing for women during COVID-19.   

If your organisation is offering supports for women or has resources relevant to women during COVID-19 please email them to Silke at silkep@nwci.ie   

 

Further information for women during COVID-19: