Student Counsellor Placements
For counselling students interested in a placement with us we offer the opportunity to work with a minimum of four clients per week in a professional and supportive environment. All new counsellors are attached to a team led by a Lead Counsellor, who will be their first point of contact for support and advice. We provide monthly group supervision (fortnightly for IAPT counsellors) and offer regular training and career development opportunities.
Our volunteers are required to:
- Hold membership of a professional body i.e. BACP
- Engage in individual supervision
- Provide a fitness to practice certificate from their tutor
- Be enrolled on a BACP/CPCAB accredited course and working towards a recognised qualification or hold a recognised counselling qualification and be working towards accreditation
- Have professional indemnity insurance
- Be able to commit to the Service for a minimum of 2 years
- Be in personal therapy
“I started my placement with Care To Listen in 2012. Due to the variety of clients we see with different issues and from all walks of life I have gained an excellent insight in counselling. I have always felt supported throughout. I have taken a lot from the opportunities given and my experience with Care To Listen has provided a great foundation for my career as a counsellor.”
I’m pleased to say that I’m now a Lead counsellor at Care To Listen and enjoy being able to support new trainee counsellors.
Kim Man, Counsellor, Care To Listen
As a current or future counsellor with us it is important that you are familiar with our Governance and Policy Documents. On commencing your placement with us you will receive our counsellor handbook and operational policy. These provide information about our policies and ways of working. You will also be expected to attend an induction session to learn about our administration and IT procedures.
We interview prospective counsellors at various times throughout the academic year, depending on vacancies arising. We are especially keen to hear from experienced counsellors who are working towards BACP accreditation and would like to develop their skills in a voluntary role in either our Low Cost or IAPT services. There are also opportunities for qualified volunteers to also conduct Low Cost initial assessments, for which we pay a sessional rate.
Your Career Pathway
Trainees often join us towards the end of their first year of training, whilst others join at more advanced stages and already have some client work experience. Many new trainee counsellors start by working in our Low-Cost Counselling Service, managing a caseload of up to four clients per week. We do, however, recruit counsellors who wish to join our IAPTS team without progressing through the Low Cost team. These counsellors would usually need to have some previous counselling or similar experience.
The first three months of the placement is a probationary period at the end of which the trainee counsellor will be invited to meet with the Service Directors/Clinical Team Leader to discuss their progress and future goals. All new trainees are assigned to a team, headed by a Lead Counsellor. The Lead Counsellor will act as a mentor and ensure that all new joiners settle in, can find their way around the building and are able to get to grips with the admin procedures.
After completing 12 months with Care To Listen trainee counsellors will be expected to attend an appraisal meeting, where they are invited to discuss their progress in detail and encouraged to set new targets for the next year. Trainees who are nearing qualification could have the opportunity to access training which will enable them to conduct Initial Assessments.
Once a student counsellor has accrued sufficient client work hours and has shown they have excellent admin skills they may wish to consider joining the (NHS) IAPTs counselling team or, if they are already working on the IAPT team, the Low Cost service to gain experience of a different way of working.