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Compass: Programme Manager Sophie on finding your compass

Supporting a young person with an eating disorder? Learn how our online service, Compass can help.

I’m Sophie, and I’m a Programme Manager here at Beat. My career’s taken me all over the place – through primary care, talking therapy services, and other charities. I’m incredibly passionate about mental health and making sure people have better access to support. So it’s a dream to now be managing one of our brilliant carer support programmes.

Let me tell you about Compass

Compass gives free online coaching to anyone caring for a young person (aged 12 – 17) who’s not in treatment right now. It can be for up to two carers, so it’s great for parents caring for their child, for example.

We pair you with one of our brilliant team, your own advisor who’ll meet you on Zoom or over the phone for 50 minutes a week for ten weeks. During your sessions, you’ll share what you’re going through and build knowledge about how to support your loved one. You’ll gain invaluable insights into their eating disorder and your role in their recovery, including planning for treatment.

We want to make sure your needs are met, too, placing plenty of importance on your own self-care.

A lot of people coming onto the programme are right at the start of the journey – they don’t know how they’re going to reach their destination. We get that. New experiences can make you feel anxious and the road ahead is daunting. Luckily, everyone on the Compass team is fantastic at what they do, and genuinely wants to help you feel as equipped as possible to support your loved one through recovery. You’re in really safe hands.

We take the steps forward together

For people starting the programme, I like to think of the quote, “You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just to take the first step.” We’ll be here to help you navigate, and give you the right information, support and guidance to keep putting one foot in front of the other.

We start by getting to know you and your situation better. We spend the whole of our first phone call together getting to understand more about you, your loved one and your support network. We’ll also give you as much information as we can about Compass.

Don’t be afraid to ask us plenty of questions, too. There’s a lot to take in as you come onto the programme, at a time when we know things are tough. We want to make sure you finish your first call feeling really clear on whether the programme is right for you, and hopeful about what it can do for you and your loved one.

We want you to feel able to be honest about your feelings so you can get the most out of your time with us. We’ll always be welcoming, supportive, and take the time to get to know you. You know your loved one best, and we’re here to offer some help along the way. We just ask that you come in open to learning new skills to support them.

I get to see the difference Compass makes

It’s a real joy to hear from carers about how positive they found Compass. Seeing the progress carers have made during one of the most difficult and distressing times in their lives is truly humbling. I’m lucky to hear such heart-warming feedback about their journey.

We want you to finish Compass feeling more confident, empowered and informed. You’ll have had a wealth of support and guidance over the previous ten weeks. There’s still a difficult road ahead – but we’ll always help you prepare for the next steps after your time with us.

Want to learn more?

My team and I want to hear from you! If you think it sounds like something that could help you and your loved one, you can learn more about Compass here. Remember, it’s free. And if you need more information, you can email us at