FRiends for Life

Anxiety, depression

FRIENDS for Life is an anxiety prevention and intervention program developed in Australia by Dr. Paula Barrett, a clinical child psychologist. It is a cognitive-behavioral intervention which addresses the cognitive, physiological and behavioral processes that are seen to interact in the development, maintenance and experience of anxiety. FRIENDS helps children and youth cope with feelings of fear, worry, and depression by building resilience and self-esteem and teaching cognitive, behavioral, and emotional skills in a simple, well-structured format.

FRIENDS is about preventing childhood anxiety and depression through the building of emotional resilience. It aims to reduce the incidence of serious psychological disorders, emotional distress and impairment in social functioning by teaching children and young people how to cope with, and manage anxiety, both now and in the future.

What makes Friends for Life different?

  • Evidence-based: Supported by ongoing research by Dr. Paula Barrett and her research team with a demonstrated preventative effect.
  • FRIENDS for Life is recognized by the World Health Organization as an effective treatment and prevention of anxiety and depression.
  • It is a local program developed in Brisbane, and used internationally (including Canada, Japan, Mexico, Norway).
  • It is a positive program which targets all children, regardless of their risk levels.
  • It focuses on equipping children with skills to overcome daily challenges and negative life events which we all encounter as human beings.

This program is also an excellent adjunct to children receiving individual treatment with a psychologist, psychiatrist or therapist. So even if your child is receiving individual treatment, they can also benefit from participation in FRIENDS. We will be happy to collaborate with your child’s individual mental health professional.

Click on the audio player below to hear about our Friends for Life programme.

Find out more information on our Groups (select the link)

An Overview of our Group Sessions

Preventing and Treating Anxiety in Children and Youth

The empirical-basis for treating Anxiety Disorders in Children 
(select the link)

Evidence Based Abstracts for Friends for Life

Preventing and Treating Anxiety Disorders in Children and Youth, a Research Report prepared for the British Columbia Ministry of Children and Family Development

Prevention of Mental Disorders: Effective Interventions and Policy Options, a report preapred by the World Health Oganization, Geneva, Switzerland

Evidence-Based Age-Appropriate Interventions: A Guide for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services, a report prepared by the Werry Centre for Child and Adolescent Mental Health, Auckland, New Zealand

More Information on Friends for Life

Friends for Life Worldwide

Friends for Life in Canada

Austin Resilience Development Inc.