Ten minutes with Mary Clare Douglas

Ten minutes with Mary Clare Douglas

Tuesday, 31 May 2022

Mary Clare Douglas is our Clinical Online Services Manager and we recently caught up with her to talk about Jigsaw’s online services and the difference they are making for young people.

How to access online support with Jigsaw

Currently we offer three ways in which young people can connect with our online team of clinicians. Firstly, through Jigsaw Live Chat, which is a text-based service. Secondly, at any time of day or night young people can email us and we can respond during our opening hours.

And lastly, every Wednesday we offer a live group chat service from 4 to 5pm. The topic of this chat is decided based on the noted demand of what young people might be currently experiencing. For example, April and May has focused on exam stress.

Clinical Online Service Manager, Mary Clare sitting at her test typing on her laptop
A young person supported by Jigsaw Live Chat
This was really nice. It can be hard to communicate via chat, but I felt really seen and heard during the session, it was really helpful.“

Most enjoyable part of being on Jigsaw's online team

My favourite part of the job is being able to see and support the growth in confidence and skills of the team. I also find it interesting and helpful when we review the feedback we receive from young people who complete the questionnaire at the end of a chat.

I have witnessed how dedicated the team are at making sure that their work is youth centred and aligns with Jigsaw’s values. It’s also good for team morale when we receive feedback from young people that shows the difference being able to access our email service or Jigsaw Live Chat has made to them.


Exploring Jigsaw Live Chat


How Jigsaw’s online support has made an impact on young people

It has had a very positive impact. Jigsaw Live Chat and Group Chat service has allowed young people to anonymously receive free one to one support, for whatever is on their mind.

Some common challenges facing young people

I think the return to school, college and social activities are the main reported challenging areas within the chat service. This is the first year since the pandemic that many young people are sitting their exams and this appears to be a challenge.

Additionally, navigating relationships have been identified as a common theme among the chat requests that we receive.

Looking back on 2021
Our team of online mental health professionals delivered 1,419 anonymous live chats and 765 email based support sessions.

The importance of supporting Jigsaw's work

Supporting Jigsaw’s work means that any 12–25-year-old can easily access mental health support.

We hear from young people who, for a number of reasons, are not in a position to access other services. They tell us the reasons for this are to do with location, stigma, lack of family support, and finances. They also say that due to specific circumstances, they are not in a position to attend their GP, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services, Adult Mental Health Services, or private therapy.

Therefore, Jigsaw’s online supports are extremely important. The online team are trained clinicians with expertise in the area of mental health. They are available to be the one good adult in that moment, and they will listen in a non-judgemental way to what a young person is sharing.


Person holding phone and looking at Jigsaws website
Person looking at Jigsaw's website on their phone

Jigsaw Live Chat

Free text-based support for those aged between 12-25 years-old.

Live Chat is Open:
Monday, Wednesday, and Friday 1 – 4.30 pm
Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2 – 7.30 pm

Visit chat portal

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