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CHIPPS is a specialist attachment-focussed, trauma-informed mental health service for children and young people in care.

Make a Referral

Why was CHIPPS set up?

CHIPPS was set up to support children and young people in care who have had traumatic childhood experiences.

We know that distressing early years experiences, especially those involving maltreatment by primary caregivers, can impact negatively on children and young people. These experience can impact  their emotional well-being and affect their physical, psychological and social development.
We are aware that when children and young people leave the care of their birth families, their neurobiological systems may have evolved to deal with abusive or neglectful circumstances.

These children’s coping methods and attachment techniques occasionally don’t function as well for them in their new surroundings, which can make it difficult for them to fit in, build relationships, and feel comfortable.

Research shows that children in care are more likely to experience mental health problems than their peers who live with birth parents.  These difficulties can persist long into adulthood if the appropriate help and support is not offered in a timely fashion.

What can we do to help

At CHIPPS we believe that every child in care deserves the opportunity to maximise their emotional wellbeing and to develop and maintain healthy, nurturing relationships with their carers, peers, family members, and the professionals working with them.

We are a team of mental health professionals who offer children and young people support with exploring their journey into care with a view to integrating early adverse experiences into their story and sense of self.  We hope to assist children and young people in considering issues that often cause distress such as their identity and sense of belonging.  We also offer multiple interventions to treat mental health difficulties they may have due to their care status and the developmental trauma they have experienced.

We believe that relational trauma is most effectively repaired in relationships so our work often involves offering therapeutic input to carers and children together.  We also offer interventions for carers alone and, where appropriate, provide direct individual work for young people and children who need their own space to work through their difficulties.

we have developed a number of groups for young people and groups for foster carers – allocation to these will be based on presenting difficulties and meeting each child/carer’s needs in the most helpful way.  Through offering such interventions, we hope to improve placement stability and help children (and their carers) to develop skills and tools to navigate their journey together and hopefully feel equipped to deal with the challenges that may arise along the way.

CHIPPS is now taking referrals from social workers attached to South Lee, North Lee, North Cork and West Cork Social Work Departments.

If you are social worker in these areas who would like to refer a child to CHIPPS please complete the referral form below by clicking on ‘make a referral’. Please include as much detail as posisble as this will help us in making a timely decision regarding the referral. If you have any questions please call 021-4357730 or email and one of our clinicians will be able to help with your enquiry. Please note, CHIPPS works with children and young people (CYP) aged 5-18 in foster care, we do not currently accept referrals for CYP in residential care’.

Following consultation, if the referral is appropriate for CHIPPS a formal referral can be made through our website.

Contact Us

Meet the CHIPPS team:

Dr Rachel Falk

Senior Clinical Psychologist/Clinical Lead

Róisín Kennedy

Senior Occupational Therapist / Clinical Lead

Ellen Bowen

Play Therapist

Amy Burke

Art Therapist

Sinead Hartnett

Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist / Art Therapist

Lola O Regan

Assistant Psychologist

Related Services

The Lime Tree Project
Teen Parent Support Programme
Parent & Infant Unit