If you have any emotional problems while you are at college, then a qualified counsellor is available to help you talk through these issues. Whether you feel that your problem is big or small, the counsellor has time to listen to you. The service is confidential and counsellors will react non-judgementally to whatever you have to say.
What is Counselling?
Counselling is an opportunity for you to talk about and work through your problems for yourself, a bit of protected time for you to discuss with a trained counsellor your feelings and experiences. The counsellor is completely impartial, and won't give you advice or tell you what to do, but will work with you to help you come to terms with your feelings, understand yourself and your reactions to things better, and maybe work out ways of dealing with things more effectively in the future.
How Does It Work?
You can choose to use the counselling service however you want. If you want to make a one off appointment just to talk for an hour and get something off your chest, that's fine. Or if you feel you need to look at things in a bit more depth, or you're going through ongoing problems and need longer-term support, then we can offer you a series of sessions with a counsellor. The number of sessions you have and how frequently these occur can be negotiated between you and the counsellor. Sessions normally last about an hour.
Booking an Appointment
If you'd like to make an appointment to see a counsellor, you can visit the student lounge on either campus, or phone reception on 01527 570020. Alternatively, your tutor should be able to help you contact the counselling service. If you want to cancel an appointment it would be helpful if you could let somebody know that youíre not coming, then we can free the space for somebody else, and rearrange a time for you if you still need it.
What do People Talk About?
There are no rules about what you can or can't talk to your counsellor about. If it's bothering you then it's fine to talk about. People talk about a huge variety of things, including problems at college, problems at home, problems with relationships, sexual issues or issues about abuse, drugs, or alcohol, eating disorders or self harm. Whatever you want to talk about will be taken seriously, however big or small or common or unusual you think the problem is. If you and your counsellor feel that you need more support than the counselling service can offer, then we can also talk about other services to refer you to.
As a general rule, everything you say to a counsellor is in complete confidence. Nobody needs to know what you have said or even that you have visited the counsellor at all. Even if your tutor or another staff member has referred you to the service, they donít need to know what youíve said or how you are if you donít want them to. There are a couple of exceptions to the confidentiality rule however, so itís worth just bearing in mind that sometimes the counsellor might have to discuss with you the need to let someone else know what has been happening. These exceptions are particularly relevant if you are under 18.
If you let us know that you are currently at risk of harm from another person, or if somebody else is at risk, particularly someone under 18.
If you are causing yourself harm in some way, or youíre at risk of doing so.
If you have been involved in, or plan to become involved in, a serious crime.
If one of these situations does arise and your counsellor does feel that somebody else needs to be told, your counsellor will try to talk with you about how this should be done, who should be told and what they need to know. If you can tell somebody yourself, then thatís often better than your counsellor doing it for you.
Codes of Practice
The counselling service at NEW College works to the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy's Ethical Framework and is an organisational member of the BACP. If you want further information about the BACP you can ask your counsellor or look at their website at www.bacp.co.uk. If you have any complaints please ask any staff member about the college complaints procedure.
Further Help and Information
The counselling service has produced a number of packs containing information about a variety of emotional issues. Please click on the link to read each pack.
Links to Other Helpful Websites
Here you will find a variety of sites linking to local and national advice and information agencies which may be helpful to you.