Be Social Wise – by Norwood

Be Social Wise
Be Social Wise


We all know that social media is a great way to chat to your friends and stay connected. But sometimes we type before we think.

That’s why Norwood launched #BeSocialWise – a campaign that encourages people to think about how they use social media.

Thank you for everyone who joined us on 3 July 2018. Stay tuned for more updates.

Be aware of your use. Use social media the right way.

Sound good? Read on to find out more…


Jodeci’s story

Twenty-year-old Jodeci is in his second year at Hertfordshire University, studying Human Geography, and things are going well. He is part of a group that does motivational speaking in secondary schools to raise young people’s self-esteem – a remarkable achievement given Jodeci’s own past struggles with low self-esteem; one of the reasons why he sought support himself from Norwood.

His battle with anxiety and bipolar disorder started in Sixth Form, triggered by the stress of exams, high expectations and the relentlessness of social media.

“There’s this pressure to be perfect, to be seen to have a life that is amazing every second of every day and this pressure clouds your perception of reality. I’m lucky, with Norwood’s help I’ve been able to get out of the cycle of social media addiction, but others aren’t and the time is now to do something about that.”

The Norwood solution

Jodeci was introduced to Norwood Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist, Sue. Seeing Sue on a weekly basis had a profound effect on him. He says: “Sue really understood me. She was the light in my week. She made me see things differently and made me believe I could get out of the mess I felt I was in. Without Sue and Norwood’s support, I may never have gone to university. Sue has been like an angel in my life and I owe so much to Norwood.”

Rebecca’s story

Now a successful fourth-year Chemistry student at university, about to embark on PhD at Imperial College London, Rebecca didn’t have the easiest start in life.

From an early age, her parents struggled to look after her and her two siblings, who both had special educational needs. Norwood also liaised with the local authority on behalf of Rebecca and her family.

But by the age of 14 she’d lived in 16 different homes – houses, estates, bed and breakfasts – and had no choice but to leave home altogether. With Norwood’s support, she moved in with extended family.

However, with so much disruption at such a critical time in her life, Rebecca needed help to be able to concentrate on finishing her education, especially with the added pressures of social media playing a significant part in her ability to cope.

“I was actually really scared [of cyber bullies]. They have this extra confidence when there’s a screen… but it still hurts.”

The Norwood solution

Norwood was there for Rebecca and her family from when she was just a toddler, as she recalls: “Norwood has been there for me since as long as I can remember. I dreamed of going to university but, as a child whose parents walked out at the age of 14 … whose family were evicted from 14 different homes, I knew the statistics were against me. But Norwood helped me fulfil my dream. I can say, without any doubt, that I would not be where I am without their help.”

Norwood stepped in, offering counselling sessions at Rebecca’s school.

As she remembers; “My counsellor was amazing! She helped me come to terms with everything that had happened and helped me move on. Through Norwood’s support, I was allowed me to concentrate at school.”

Georgia’s story

Georgia is 19 years old and Norwood has worked with her family for as long as she can remember. Her home life was hard when she was growing up. Her mum had mixed personality disorder and depression so she wasn’t always able to look after her or her younger brother. They were often left to fend for themselves. Georgia felt very isolated.

Not surprisingly, the situation at home meant that Georgia also had problems at school and had difficulty with friendships. She experienced bullying, and issues with her self confidence and felt that there was no one she could tell. The rise in social media meant she would have to paint a picture of herself online that hid the real problems she faced.

She says: “I love social media but sometimes I find it hard to stop. For young people we can be more obsessed with what’s happening on a screen than appreciating what’s right in front of us.”

The Norwood solution

When Georgia met Alex, her Norwood social worker, she knew straight away that she would always be there for her, whatever she was dealing with. Alex came to see her and helped her with everything, from her home life to her problems at school. In the end it all paid off because Georgia went on to become head girl and immediately thanked Alex for helping to make that possible.

None of this would have been possible without Alex’s help. Her helping Georgia emotionally meant she was able to thrive academically.

On average, young people look at 30 images of themselves before they post just one!

500 million tweets are sent every day.

There are 7.1 billion people on the planet – with 7.4 billion active mobile phones.


Norwood supports thousands of young people and families each year.
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