Carer Support Wiltshire are pleased to be taking part in a pilot scheme with Bristol-based mental health technology start-up Paranimo that will enable them to offer free therapy sessions to the unpaid carers they support.

Paranimo believe that accessing mental health support doesn’t have to be complicated or dependent upon where you live. They have created an ‘all in one’ mental health platform that matches a person’s mental health circumstances to UK-based private therapists who specialise in that issue. They then offer a secure and accessible online therapy environment they call the “Virtual Therapy Room” where sessions take place.

The pilot study has been made possible with funding from Innovate UK and is aiming to reach two vulnerable groups of people – those with a disability and unpaid carers. In order to reach 50 unpaid carers, Paranimo have reached out to Carer Support Wiltshire.

Jon Berridge is Partnerships and Development Manager at Carer Support Wiltshire. He said:

“We’re delighted to be taking part in this pilot, which will offer carers the opportunity to have free counselling sessions through the Paranimo platform.

“We know through surveys we have conducted that carers value the opportunity to have access to counselling. Their mental health may have been negatively affected from seeing a loved one suffering from an illness, and carers often neglect their own needs and can become isolated when they are caring for someone else.

“We received National Lottery funding earlier this year to provide counselling to carers following the first Covid-19 lockdown, which helped many people. But we had to turn some down due to the high demand. We’re happy to be able to offer these sessions to some of those who missed out earlier in the year.”

Matthew Vamplew is Paranimo’s Co-founder and CEO. He said:

“My personal experience of seeking mental health support has shown me the challenges people face when looking for help. I knew I had to find another way to make the process of finding therapy more accessible and less complex for everyone, and so Paranimo was born.

“My hope is that through Paranimo, more and more people will feel empowered to take control of their mental health and get the support they need and deserve.”

Unpaid carers who would like to take part in the pilot study should contact Carer Support Wiltshire at admin@carersupportwiltshire.co.uk or by calling 0800 181 4118.

More can be found out about Paranimo by visiting their website.