Counselling has been a real passion of mine for many, many years. I find that it can be a challenging but rewarding profession and I wouldn't change it for the world. I always strive to offer the best service to each and every individual. I also really enjoy the learning and growth that I invest in to try and offer the most help to each person I come into contact with.
Although it does help my job as a Counsellor, I see the development and learning about myself and others a fascinating interest which I think I would pursue whatever my career. I also aim to make the best I can and learn from, life and it's many situations.
On a personal level, I am a huge music fan and used to gig and busk all around the North of England. I love reading, mostly non-fiction, but nothing quite like finding a good novel (easier said than done it seems.) I'm also a football fan, bit of a tech geek, play poker, enjoy time with friends and making the most of the many opportunities life (and Brighton) has to offer. I see personal development and learning as a life long task that I fully invest in but can also be challenging at times.
I am also currently working on a project called "Chris The Counsellor" which is providing Counselling information to students and qualified counsellors. You can see the website here or the YouTube Channel here
Counselling is something that I see as more of a vocation than work. I have had experience in a number of roles including Counsellor, Supervisor, Tutor and Facilitator, both in group and individual settings and with a wide range of ages and issues. I also passionately welcome the continued learning and development that is essential on both a professional and personal level. I was proud to be awarded the youngest senior accredited counsellor on record in 2016 by the BACP.
I have been running my own private practice for nearly 10 years and also teach on the CPCAB Level 4 Counselling Diploma and Level 3 Certificate in Counselling Studies at Varndean College. I really enjoy the variety that these roles offer, as well as still being involved in a field that I am very passionate about. It enables me to learn from the students, have fantastic discussions and debates, as well as keep up to date and pass on knowledge about Counselling and more specifically, the Person-centred approach.
Before I moved to Brighton in 2016, I was working 3 days a week at Runshaw College counselling students, facilitating a P.D. group on the Counselling Diploma at UCLan and facilitating group Supervision at the Ormskirk Bereavement Service. In the last year, I have also taught on the Experiential Person-Centred Counselling Degree program at Edge Hill University and the Level 2 Counselling Skills course at Runshaw Adult college.
I have also worked as a Counsellor for NHS staff at Blackpool Victoria Hospital, as well as Counselling carers and patients at Rossendale Hospice. As well as this, I have also worked with young adults and children in my jobs as a school Counsellor at Larches House and Talk Counselling service at Urban Exchange in Preston.
I feel that my varying roles as a Counsellor, Supervisor, Facilitator and Tutor have given me great learning and experience working with a wide range of issues and ages. I have had experience of working with children, adolescents, adults and the elderly with some of the following issues:
I am a Fully Qualified and Senior Accredited Member of the British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy (BACP.) I also follow the BACP Ethical Framework Counselling Professions. In short, this means that you can trust that the service I provide will be of a good standard and in line with my professional body. More information regarding BACP Ethical Framework Here.
I also have some involvement with ADPCA and BAPCA.
BACP Senior Accreditation (Snr. Accred.) - The BACP website describes this as "Senior Accreditation shows current and potential clients, employers and colleagues that you are an experienced, mature and accomplished practitioner in your specialism and that you have continued to reflect and develop since your initial accreditation as a counsellor/psychotherapist."
Certificate in Therapeutic Supervision - This qualification was taught over one year and awarded by CPCAB. It helps me to deliver Supervision to Counsellors and other helping professions. Supervision is usually used to discuss areas that will enable us to work better with our clients and improve our overall effectiveness in our role.
Graduate Diploma in Professional Counselling - A diploma is usually the final qualification that a trainee Counsellor has to achieve to be able to practice as a professional and qualified Counsellor. This usually takes at least 2 years to complete.
Degree in Philosophy and Theology (BA) - Although not a direct Counselling qualification, it feels highly relevant to the work due to areas such as Spirituality, Existentialism, Self, Religion, Logic, Society, Morality, Epistemology etc.
Certificate in Expressive Arts Therapy - This course, over 5 weekends, was used to explore, understand and use expressive arts therapy both on a personal level and for our own therapeutic practice. There were many different media used for this including pastels, writing, movement, clay, collage etc. all to help us use different methods to express ourselves. It has been described as 'A playful way to awaken personal growth and creativity.'
Certificate in Online Counselling - This certificate was used for learning and practice of using online techniques to deliver Counselling. These including telephone Counselling, video chat, instant messaging and email. Often people are unable to attend face-to-face or would prefer not to and so this course prepares the practitioner to work well with online methods of Counselling.
Child Protection Awareness - This is a course to further enhance the understanding of child protection. It covers different areas and types of child protection as well as the recommended action to follow under each circumstance.
Levels 1 and 2 in Counselling Skills - These two levels are required to eventually enrol on a Counselling Diploma. They usually take 1.5 years to complete in total.
Levels 1 and 2 CAF - These courses are used to help understanding and use of the Common Assessment Framework.