April Featured Service: Butterfly Foundation Youth Program

April Featured Service: Butterfly Foundation Youth Program

Our featured service this month is Butterfly Foundation’s Youth Program, an online treatment program from the Butterfly Foundation for young Australians in need of help with dieting or body image concerns.

Eating disorders and body image issues affect over 1 million Australians, with everyone’s experience being unique. Eating disorders and body image disorders come in a range of different forms, and people from all different walks of life can experience an eating disorder or body image issues.

There are numerous factors that contribute to eating disorders and body image issues, and holidays like Easter that revolve around food can be a difficult time for people living with an eating disorder or body image disorder. Following the celebration of Easter this month, we wanted to highlight a digital mental health service to support people during this time. The Butterfly Foundation Youth Program provides treatment for young Australians experiencing symptoms of disordered eating, supporting young people through difficult times and aid in their recovery journey.

About Butterfly Foundation

Butterfly Foundation is a national charity for Australians impacted by eating disorders and body image issues, their families, friends, and community. They offer free, accessible support for anyone needing guidance with an eating disorder including counselling, referral, support, psycho-education and guidance via telephone, web chat, online support groups and email.

Butterfly Foundation aims to bring a change in culture, celebrating health, wellbeing and diversity, and support Australians who have eating disorders and negative body image.

About Butterfly Foundation’s Youth Program

Butterfly Foundation’s Youth Program is a virtual, skills-based group therapy treatment program for young Australians experiencing symptoms of disordered eating, Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, or Binge Eating Disorder (BED). The program is based on Enhanced Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT-E), delivered by clinicians training to work with young people with body image issues and eating disorders. By providing a safe, supportive, recovery-focused environment the Youth Program aims to help participants;

  • Develop skills to manage stress and emotions
  • Manage relationships
  • Increase mindfulness
  • Learn self-compassion
  • Improve body image
  • Reduce eating disorder symptoms
  • Build a healthier relationship with food

The program runs for 12 weeks, with a total of 22 sessions, all held on Zoom. Groups are held twice a week for the first 10 weeks, then once a week for the final 2 weeks, providing participants with the opportunity to explore, understand, and gain insights into their thoughts, feelings and concerns around their own body image and food. The program also includes supportive food challenge sessions, teaching skills and coping strategies to change participants’ behaviours around food.

Who is Butterfly Foundation’s Youth Program for?

The Youth Program is designed for young Australians experiencing symptoms of disordered eating, Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, Binge Eating Disorder (BED), who are seeking to learn skills for recovery. Potential participants must be:

  • Aged between 18-25 years.
  • Have symptoms consistent with Anorexia, Bulimia Nervosa, Binge Eating Disorder, OSFED, or disordered eating.
  • BMI greater than 18.
  • Agree to be monitored by a GP during the course of the program.
  • Agree to work with a community treatment team, at minimum a GP and psychologist.
  • Self-sufficient with eating and meals.
  • Motivated to work towards recovery.

The Butterfly Foundation clinical staff assesses all participants for suitability before recommending entry into the program.

Is there a cost to use Butterfly Foundation’s Youth Program?

There is no cost to apply or participate in Butterfly Foundation’s Youth Program.

How to access Butterfly Foundation’s Youth Program

Registration and referrals are always open, however there is an assessment process before applicants are accepted into upcoming programs.

Individuals can register their interest by completing an online form including their personal details and the details of their GP. If applicants so not have a GP, they can still register and Butterfly Foundation will help them to find a GP to support them through the program.

Health professionals can refer a client by downloading a referral form to be submitted via email to treatment@butterfly.org.au

More information about Butterfly Foundation’s Youth Program, registrations, and upcoming programs for 2022 can be found at https://butterfly.org.au/get-support/outpatient-treatment-programs/youth-program/