Side by Side Support Service

Our flagship Side by Side Support Service aims to help you get the support and treatment you need so that you can step onto the road to recovery and live the life you want to lead. This service is a development beyond our befriending service which came to an end in 2011. Side by Side is Recovery focused and goal orientated so rather than providing an ongoing friend via befriending, our staff and volunteers will work to support you to meet new people, make new friends and widen your network so that the benefits of reduced isolation are sustained in the longer term. 

We provide social support, emotional support, practical support, information and advocacy and can help you on a short, medium or on a  longer term basis.

Please contact us if you are finding it difficult to cope with your own or someone else's mental health.

How we can help...

Social Support 

People experiencing mental health difficulties often find themselves isolated. This is usually for two reasons, either because they isolate themselves or because friends and family don't know how to help and they withdraw. Whatever the cause the result is the same - isolation. If you have become isolated or are nervous about going out, one of our staff or volunteers can accompany you. Perhaps you would like to visit your local reading group, go to the cinema or join an adult education class. Let us know and we can arrange for someone to go with you, try new experiences and meet new people.

Emotional Support

A listening ear can be a real relief. It can really help to talk to someone about how we are feeling, talk a problem through or discuss options before making an important choice or decision. Simply talking to someone can avert a crisis, and can help to break what seems like a big task or problem into ‘bit sized pieces’. .

Practical Support

Day to day activities like shopping, attending appointments, keeping your home tidy, filling in forms or opening mail can be challenging because of a mental health problem. Our staff and volunteers can provide support to plan and implement ways of independently managing day-to-day tasks such as shopping, attending appointments or managing paperwork. This might be through connecting you with a supported shopping service or boosting confidence with online shopping, setting up budgets, making a task planner etc. 


When you are ill it often helps to have someone with you who is completely on your side, who can support you to speak up and say the things you would like to. For example, you may feel that you have important things to say to your doctor but when you get there you lose confidence, or simply forget or you may need to attend a medical assessment for benefits but are worried about getting there and ensuring you share all the important information. We can support you to plan and rehearse beforehand and then accompany you help you say what you want to say. Or perhaps you need assistance with other things like a benefit query or a complaint that you wish to make. Advocates are not there to agree with your views or to provide evidence of your viewpoint, but to ensure you are able to exercise your rights.


Up to date and reliable information is always essential, but sometimes it's hard to know how and where to find it. Perhaps you need information about medication, benefits, returning to or staying at work, how to get the best service from your GP or mental health services. Maybe you want to attend an evening course or join a support group? Whatever it is we can help you find the information that you need. We maintain a large directory of local resrouces and our staff are very knowledgeable about navigating the health and social care system. If you ask us a question we can't answer, we'll do our best to find someone who can!

We are here for you...

Short Term Support

Sometimes, people with mental health problems need help with one or two things that are proving problematic or distressing such as applying for benefits, moving house, finding information, getting into a routine again, getting some exercise or just talking things through.

Medium Term Support

Sometimes those of us with mental health difficulties need help over a few weeks, months, or more. Difficulties with a neighbour, poor housing, court attendance …. These are just a few of the things that may be preventing you from having better mental health or living a happier and more independent life.

Longer Term Support

There are those of us with enduring mental health difficulties and having support and friendship over a sustained period of time can be hugely beneficial. Mental ill health often leads to loss of confidence and self esteem and people can become isolated and lonely, and getting out and about is made even more difficult as a result of the stigma and discrimination surrounding mental ill health. We can help by introducing you to a trained volunteer who will support you to do the things you want to do, whether that be visiting the local library, taking a regular walk or visiting a local gym, joining an adult education class or using public transport. Whilst we cannot provide ongoing, maintenance support or support with an activity that you will always need help to achieve, what we can do is work towards a set of goals that will lead to long term independence. We do not put a time limit on Side by Side and will continue to work with people whilst they are moving towards Recovery. 

Apply for our service

If you would like to receive help from us you can telephone us on 01723 356562  alternatively you can e-mail us at or you can download and fill in a referral form here.

Once you have filled in the form please post it to us at Scarborough, Whitby and Ryedale Mind, The Spencer Suite, Falsgrave Community Resource Centre, Seamer Road, Scarborough, YO12 4DJ.