Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service


Information for Parents

A child or young person may be referred for the following reasons

  • Behavioural difficulties
  • Emotional difficulties
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
  • Family relationship difficulties
  • Eating Problems and Disorders: Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia
  • Mood Disorders: Depression, Bipolar Mood Disorder
  • Autism and Asperger's Syndrome (Diagnosis only)

Info for Parents


A Vision for Change

In 2006 the Government published a report of the expert group on mental health policy. This report is called A Vision for Change. One of the recommendations of this report is that mental health services for children should be provided by multidisciplinary teams. In effect this means that each team is made up of clinicians from different disciplines who all work together to provide a range of therapeutic interventions for each child. Usually a Multidisciplinary Team is made up of the clinicians in the following areas:

1. Consultant Psychiatrist
2. Psychiatrist in training.
3. Nurse
4. Psychologist
5. Social Worker
6. Occupational Therapist
7. Speech and Language Therapist
8. Social Care Worker.

Click on the links to read more information about each discipline in Lucena Clinic.
You can also read the full text of A Vision for Change


Young Children

Information for young children

Growing up can be fun but tricky. Sometimes people need to talk to a grown up to help figure out a problem. It’s good to talk about worrying things so we can better understand our feelings and how we act.



Young Children

Information for Teenagers


Adolescence is an important time of physical, social, emotional and educational development. It can be exciting but confusing. Sometimes it can feel like we don't have any control over what we think or how we feel. But by making simple changes to our lives, we can make a real difference.


History of Lucena Clinic

St. John of God

Lucena was the name of the house and the first hospital which St. John of God opened in 1537 in the city of Granada, Spain. To honour the 5th centenary of the birth of St. John of God in 1495, the Order renamed its Child and Adolescent Mental Health services as Lucena Clinic Services.


The Order wishes to extend the same hospitality shown by John to everyone who came seeking help, healing or shelter at his house on Lucena Street, to every child and family coming to any of the clinics at Rathgar; Tallaght; Dun Laoghaire, Bray and Wickow.


About Us

Lucena Clinics

St. John of God Community Services Limited

Lucena Clinic Services is the Child and Adolescent Mental Health service of St. John of God Community Services Limited. Lucena Clinic Services is a registered charity and has been providing a mental health service to children and adolescents and their families for over 50 years.


The Lucena Clinic services are delivered via our 5  clinics in

 Rathgar  - tel :              (01) 492 3596

 Tallaght  - tel :              (01) 452 6333

 Dun Laoghaire -  tel;    (01) 280 9809

 Bray  - tel :                   (01) 286 6886

 Wicklow - tel :              0404 25591


 If you are trying to contact ST. PETER'S SCHOOL  please visit their website. St. Peter's School   or

 ring their DIRECT LINE : 01 4999300 Please do not ring Lucena Clinic as we cannot transfer your call. 



Mary Scullion

Joint Head of Speech
and Language

Sarah Burns

Joint Head of Speech 
and Language

Speech and Language Department


Speech and Language Therapists are qualified professionals who help clients that present with a variety of difficulties in the area of communication.  We work closely with the young person and their family to establish a plan to help them communicate as effectively as possible.   Speech and Language Therapists at Lucena Clinic are part of a vibrant and dynamic department who work as part of the multi-disciplinary team in each of our locations.

Children and young people with emotional and/or behavioural difficulties can often present with speech, language or communication difficulties in one or more of the following areas:   

  • Speech sounds (difficulty making sounds)
  • Language (understanding what words mean, how to make new words and put words into sentences)
  • Social communication/ Pragmatic language  (using language socially and in conversation)
  • Fluency (Stammering)
  • Voice (loss of voice or hoarseness)

At Lucena Clinic, a young person is usually referred for assessment by members of the multidisciplinary team if there are concerns about their speech, language or communication skills.  Generally, an assessment is carried out over a few sessions.  The assessment process includes discussing the parent’s and young person’s concerns with them and asking about how the young person is communicating in everyday situations.  Assessment findings often contribute to the overall diagnosis that a young person receives.

Depending on the young person’s age, his/her speech and language skills may be assessed through:

  • Play and conversation
  • Observation
  • Standardised tests
  • Report from parents/young person themselves/school
  • Questionnaires/checklists

After assessment, if further speech and language therapy intervention is indicated, the timing and nature of this will be considered in conjunction with the young person and their family and in the context of the overall multi-disciplinary treatment plan.

Speech and Language Therapy intervention has many forms:

· Working with and through the parents

· Liaison with school

· Group intervention

· Individual direct intervention


Indirect intervention is the most common way of supporting communication development. It can include liaison with school; a programme of activities and strategies; training and advice, all of which may be for home and school.


Some children or young people will need some direct intervention in which they are given exercises and taught techniques to work on, according to the goals set.


If you have any questions/queries, please contact the Speech and Language Therapist in your local Lucena Clinic and we will do our best to help.


Secret Agent Society

Children's mental health programme

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