At Connect, we provide specialist psychotherapy services for young people up to 18 in Suffolk, who are adopted, looked after or in Special Guardianship, Child Arrangement or Kinship Care arrangements. We also support carers and families.
We have the following professionals in the team to support patients: Consultant Psychiatrist, Clinical Psychologist, Child Psychotherapist, Art Psychotherapists, Primary Mental Health Worker and Mental Health Nurse.
The Connect service is a specialist service for children and we provide individually tailored therapeutic interventions to the child(ren) via a range of therapies and contacts, to promote emotional wellbeing. We also work to support the maintenance of placements: this means providing additional support to families, households and the professionals involved with a child.
We work closely with other teams looking after children and young people in NSFT such the Child and Family, Youth, Neurodevelopment and Wellbeing Pathways to ensure we provide a cohesive service.
We also work closely with other teams from Adoption and Fostering services within Suffolk County Council, especially the Suffolk Therapeutic Fostering Team.
Download our Connect service information leaflet
Referrals to Connect are made through the Emotional Wellbeing Hub which is the single point of access in Suffolk for mental health service users under 25 years old.
Once your referral to Connect is accepted you can expect us to quickly discuss the case details in our multidisciplinary team meetings and work out a course of action.
The referrer and GP receive a letter confirming that we have accepted the referral, and this letter explains the next step, for example, that we will contact you about an assessment
We continually review our referrals and allocate consultations, assessments and interventions when a suitable practitioner is available. If you are concerned that you haven't heard from us please do make contact and ask our administrator about progress
When we offer you a meeting or series of meetings we may ask you to come in different combinations with the young person and sometimes not. We will ask for your consent around where we can share information, and we will discuss consent to treatment and confidentiality.
From there we will talk with you and work out the best way forward to support your child
If you have concerns that a Looked After or Adopted Child may need our support please make use of our Consultation sessions which take place weekly in South Bury and Ipswich as detailed below. These are available by appointment. Please contact team administrator on the details below
These sessions are usually attended by professionals, by foster carers or adoptive parents together with a social worker and give the opportunity to discuss and think through the young person's needs in detail. Please note that these consultations (along with other aspects of our service) can be provided using virtual platforms.
Consultation sessions for West Suffolk West Suffolk HouseBury
9.00am—12.00 noonThursdays Floor 3, Room 3
Consultation sessions for East SuffolkLandmark HouseIpswich
9.00am—12 noonThursdays Room SO6
Once your referral to Connect is accepted you can expect us to quickly discuss the case details in our full team meetings and work out a course of action.
Referrals to us here at Connect are made in the same way as any other mental health referrals, which is through the Emotional Wellbeing hub (telephone on
0345 600 2090).
At Connect, we offer psychiatric and psychological assessments and
consultations, evidence-based interventions for childhood trauma such as
creative, play and art therapy interventions, relational and attachment based
We may work with the individual child, or we may suggest work with the
carer present, or relationship and family therapy support.
We have a Family Therapy Clinic for adoptive families referred to
us via the Suffolk County Council Permanence Team. We also offer Changing
Circles psycho-education workshops for adoptive and foster carers, and Enhanced
Parenting Groups to support carers with complex parenting issues.
We work mainly from Bury St Edmunds and Ipswich for all of Suffolk,
except children in Lowestoft and Waveney. The Connect Service is not available
to children based in Thetford, however these young people may still be able
access other mental health services.
We provide training and education to foster carers, adoptive
parents, residential workers, and other professionals.
We also offer regular consultations to Local Authority Children's
Young people placed in Suffolk from out of area are also able to use the
Connect Service but this is is then chargeable to the placing authority.
Children’s Treatment CentreBungalow 6Walker CloseIpswichSuffolkIP3 8LY
The Connect Service
work in a variety of our Trust's buildings, many of which have limited but dedicated
parking including disabled and the buildings have disabled access. For specific
queries please contact the team administrator who can advise you further.
For general enquiries contact us through our administrator on 01473
237034 /237070 or for referral please contact the Emotional Wellbeing Hub on
0345 600 2090.
What hours is your service available?
to Friday between 9am to 5pm excluding bank holidays.
Connect specialises in therapeutic interventions,
consultations and assessments where there are concerns around attachment difficulties, developmental
trauma and other complex developmental, social and emotional difficulties and
acute mental health difficulties. We commonly work with young people around
complex emotional issues which can arise as a result of loss of birth family or
as a direct consequence of being in care.
clinicians work closely with carers and family and are led by the young person
as well as the relevant professionals as to who we involve in their care.
offer a Family Therapy Clinic as part of our intervention offer and would be
happy to provide more information about this upon request.
Clinical Team Lead - Justin Hunter - Registered Mental Health Nurse
Connect Service offers a duty system during operational hours. Please contact
the team administrator on 01473 237034 and a member of the team will endeavor
to return your call. Outside of operational hours please contact the Crisis
response team (24 hours) on 0300 123 1334. If you have a medical or
life-threatening emergency please call 999.