Children in Need funds organisations in Norfolk

Children in Need has contributed to a project to help young people talk about eating disorders through electronic communication. Norfolk Eating Disorders Association (Neda), in Colegate, Norwich, received �99,556 to fund their youth project.

The grant has provided various confidential communication techniques for young people to use, including phone, texts, live chats with a professional, and email.

Helping eight to 19-year-olds, the project deals with various eating disorders from food-phobics to anorexics.

Diane Archer, youth support worker, said: 'We're not looking to put labels on young people. It's good to get them in early so hopefully it won't develop into something worse.'

Originally founded as Anorexia Family Aid in 1976, Neda was renamed in 1979 and the youth project was launched three years ago in July 2008.

Rosie Thomas, chairman of trustees, said: 'Without the Children in Need funding there wouldn't be a youth project.'

Their funding stops in July 2011 and Neda is already putting together an application to reapply in January.

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Mrs Thomas said: 'We've got really strong staff at the moment and it would be such a shame for this project to fold.'

Inside the centre is a specialised library, up to three counselling rooms which can also be used as a private chill-out room and a creative space used for activities such as drawing and creative writing. There is also a number of trained staff and volunteers to help.

The youth project receives about eight new cases a month and Neda also runs an adult service and support for family and friends.

Jamie Pye has used Neda to help him control his eating disorder.

Jamie found Neda by himself as he was 18 and the place he was going to before no longer allowed him to attend as it only dealt with children. He is a tall, thin boy who looks a lot younger than his age. He has had problems with food since he was a young child and at school would sell his lunch. He was bullied at school and called fatty.

He finds Neda a helpful place to go because they listen and it is good to have someone to talk to outside of the family. He is a carer for his mum who has arthritis and osteoarthritis and also for his stepfather who has narcolepsy and cataplexy.

He describes having an eating disorder as feeling like someone inside you can take control.

The project has helped the way he thinks about things.

He said: 'I feel easier to control eating as I can think of things in a different way. It's easier to not let it control everything.'

Visit or call its helpline on 01603 767062.

n Another organisation helped by Children in Need is the Mancroft Advice Project (Map).

Offering advice and help on any issue affecting young people, Map on Chantry Road, Norwich, prides itself on being able to get the right help to the right person.

Dan Mobbs, chief executive of MAP, said: 'There isn't an alternative. It's not like they can go somewhere else if they don't come here because that kind of counselling, where you've got a well-qualified, experienced coun-sellor, isn't available. The money has made that available.'

The money granted by Children in Need has allowed Map to create a counselling post. It has been funded by almost �45,000 over three years.

Map offers help for 11 to 25-year-olds, from advice on domestic violence to completing a college application. It also provides leaflets, advisers and free internet access.

Mr Mobbs said that the funding had been crucial and said: 'We can provide counselling to make the kind of positive impact on young people's mental health, on their ability to grow up and become happy and content adults.'

Michael Mutter, counselling services manager, said: 'The actual number of young people coming here has increased because there aren't any alternatives out there. The actual severity of what young people bring in has increased, so this funding helps someone who can account for that.'

Map has between 40 and 50 users walking through its doors every day.

Visit or call 01603 766994.