History and Objectives
Brandon Centre is a charitable organisation which has existed for over 50 years. Originally called the London Youth Advisory Centre (LYAC). Our founder, Dr Faith Spicer, recognised that young women needed to have access to a service that allowed them time to talk through emotional issues that accompanied requests for contraception. Shortly after the founding of the contraceptive service, an information service and a psychotherapy service were initiated for young women and men due to the scale of the emotional needs in the local community and beyond. These services were made accessible by allowing self-referral and confidentiality, providing comfortable, welcoming and ‘non-institutional premises’ in the heart of the local community with staff being friendly and non-intrusive.
The contraceptive and sexual health service has gained a reputation for working effectively with young people from deprived and disadvantaged backgrounds that put them at risk of unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. The Centre was one of the first local organisations for young people to pioneer routine screening and treatment for chlamydia. The contraceptive and sexual health service supports over 2,000 young people annually.
The Centre has also acquired a reputation for imaginatively applying psychotherapeutic principles in devising and implementing services in order to engage and reach out to high priority groups of young people. Many of these services involve making partnerships with mainstream and special schools, youth offending services and advice agencies for young people.
Today the Centre also offers an intervention for families of young people in serious trouble with the law and for parents struggling to bring up a teenager whose behaviour is out-of-control. It also provides individual therapeutic help for young people. Combining service delivery with audit and research, including the rigorous evaluation of outcomes, has further enhanced the reputation of the Centre’s psychotherapy service and the contraceptive and sexual health service.
The principal objective of Brandon Centre is to maintain and develop an accessible and flexible professional service in response to the psychological, medical, sexual and social challenges of young people under 25 years.
The Centre aims to relieve distress, mobilise personal resources and facilitate growth in adolescents towards responsibility and self-fulfilment. We aim to prevent or alleviate suffering caused by unwanted pregnancy, mental ill health, psychological disturbance and maladaption in adult and future family relationships.
Brandon Centre services extend to a wide range of adolescent problems and is based on a psychoanalytic understanding of adolescent development and specialist treatment and preventative provision for contraceptive, pregnancy and psychosexual difficulties.