Redborne Counselling Service
Mrs. Marianne Walton, BACP, full time
The Redborne Personal Guidance and Support Service exists to offer a regular space and time for a student to talk or think about things that are important, particularly those issues that may be worrying or difficult.
Personal Guidance and Support can help with a variety of difficulties, such as bereavement, depression, stress, loss, panic attacks, relationships at school or at home and distressing events. All of these can affect your ability to function as you would wish.
Where and when does Support take place?
Sessions usually take place in Middle House, during the school day. Appointments are arranged by the school counsellor you would be seeing and the times are varied so that time is not lost from any one subject.
How is a referral made?
Referral to Personal Guidance and Support can be made in a number of ways. Students may book appointments themselves by talking to the counsellor at Middle House or ask their Head of Year or member of their year staff to make an appointment for them. Seeing a member of staff is always voluntary.
Parents who would like their son or daughter to receive support should in the first instance contact their son or daughter's Head of Year.
Is the service Confidential?
YES, the service is confidential. It is a time when individuals can talk about any concerns they are experiencing without fear of these concerns being discussed elsewhere.
How long will a session last?
There is no set time limit relating to the number of sessions that a student can have. Support may be for one or two sessions or a longer time. This is reviewed regularly between the school counsellor and the student.
Each session lasts for approximately fifty minutes.
The aim of the counselling service is:
To provide a confidential counselling service for students, with social, emotional or behavioural concerns to enable them to fulfil their potential.
If a student is in danger, staff may approach other agencies for help. The member of staff would first discuss this with the student concerned except in exceptional circumstances.
If you are interested in counselling for yourself or someone you know, or would just like to further understand what the counselling service involves, it may be helpful to read about the counselling process. General information about the process is detailed below.
What is counselling?
There are many definitions of counselling. One simple version is that counselling is a working relationship in which you are helped to explore and manage what is happening in your life. The overall aim of counselling is to provide an opportunity for you to work towards a more satisfying and resourceful experience of life. Naturally, each person's needs are different.
Counselling may be concerned with:
- personal development issues
- addressing and resolving specific problems
- making decisions
- coping with crisis
- developing personal insight and knowledge
- working through feelings of inner conflict
- improving relationships with others
- or any number of other issues, large or small, which crop up in everyday life.
The counsellor's role is to help facilitate your work in ways that respect your values, personal resources and capacity for choice within your cultural context.
Many of us use some counselling skills in our daily lives and often appreciate support from friends, colleagues and family members. Sometimes however, our usual sources of support can be too close, inappropriate or sometimes part of the problem. Counsellors who have been trained over many years have been shown to be particularly effective in helping, especially in difficult or sensitive situations. They are independent, neutral and professional and they respect our privacy.
Counselling can sometimes be helpful to clarify our problems and challenges, identify changes we would like to make, gain fresh perspectives, consider the consequences of various options and acknowledge the impact of life events on our emotional well being.
People enter into counselling for a wide variety of reasons:
- stress: this is a very common issue for many people and can occur at any time in your life. It can be related to specific situations you are trying to deal with, heavy workload, keeping up with changes in your life, etc.
There are situations that can be considerably improved by early counselling
- conflict at school: whether with a member of staff, parent or student.
- bereavement: whether the death of someone close, or the effects of bereavement on a loved one, or staff or students at school
- depression: a common and very preventable illness, often responds well to counselling if undertaken promptly
- loss of confidence or motivation
- health problems: coping with poor health or that of a loved one.
Counselling can help us come to terms with the kinds of specific issues listed above and the many others that we may face on a daily basis. Counsellors can help us to understand our situations, review the options and decide upon actions. People often find that knowing they have a plan helps them feel in control. Being able to know they have considered carefully the situation from all angles improves self-confidence and optimism about the future.
Counsellors have helped people to make important changes in their lives, but equally have helped people to live more creatively with situations that cannot easily be changed. Some clients find that the ability to discuss their difficulties openly with someone they can trust is sufficient reason on its own to enter counselling; just explaining things to someone impartial can often clarify the situation.
How counselling works
Most importantly, you will benefit most if you enter counselling of your own free will. Sometimes, a well-meaning friend or family member, who might be concerned for you but unable to help directly, might suggest counselling. You might engage in a first session of counselling to see what it is all about.
To take full advantage of the service available it is therefore preferable if you decide for yourself that it is worth trying. You can certainly stop at any time. Many people have received enough assistance after one contact with a counsellor, for others more sessions can be better. Counselling will be a specific arrangement between you and your counsellor. It will be entirely private
except in exceptional circumstances. Counselling is not about making judgements. The counsellor will accept you whoever you are, regardless of status, lifestyle or whatever the issues you face.
Counselling works best as a partnership. It helps if you can get along with, or even like your counsellor. Chemistry can matter, but it is more important that you trust and respect him or her. The partnership with your counsellor begins as soon as you make contact. Good counsellors help you to explain what is important to you; they ask questions and, naturally, they will listen a great deal to begin with. Your counsellor will often clarify, reflect comments back to you and encourage further exploration so that you both develop an accurate picture of the situation. By looking at a situation from a fresh perspective, we often discover new possibilities.
You will find yourself encouraged to talk, to think and also to listen. Counselling is an interactive, two-way process. You do not have to tell the counsellor everything about you and your life, but you should be honest with your counsellor. It is better to say that you prefer not to talk about a specific issue than to be misleading or to deny that the issue exists.
Counsellors are trained to avoid imposing their own view and answers to your situation. They are there to help you to realise your own potential and find the solution that works best for you.