Volunteer for Us

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As a volunteer for Sunderland Counselling Service you will be able to develop valuable skills and experience whilst studying at your chosen university or college.

You will be fully supported on your volunteering journey and you will gradually build your caseload, enabling you to achieve your therapeutic goals. You will also get the chance to make new friendships and get a real sense of achievement.

Applications now closed for 2024!

Volunteer - Placement Counsellors

We are excited to offer you the opportunity to volunteer within our BACP accredited counselling service.

We pride ourselves on offering a high level of support to our volunteers, as well as many opportunities for training and development. We are looking for committed, empathetic individuals who believe in our ethos.

Whether you are qualified and looking to gain some additional experience, or if you are working towards qualification on a recognised Level 5 counselling course, Sunderland Counselling Service may be the place for you.

We recruit volunteers at set times of the year so that you can start your volunteer placement alongside other volunteers for additional peer support.

Find out why volunteer Tristan says " Working at Sunderland counselling services was such a positive experience "

Further Information

Our volunteer placements are working with adults within our Primary Care Counselling Service where clients can self refer or are referred through the NHS and are offered short-term counselling, usually a maximum of six sessions. Our placements are based at John Street, Sunderland City Centre.

  • Two references and a DBS check are required before commencing placement.
  • We require volunteers to commit to their placement for a full year, with a minimum of two clients per week.
  • We have flexibility in the times we can offer placements, including weekdays and evenings.
  • We provide clinical supervision at no cost to all volunteers.
  • You will be asked to provide a mix of face to face, telephone and online video counselling

2024 Volunteer Counselling Placements

We are offering 5 volunteer counselling placements in 2024. These will be in the following services:

2 x placements in our Primary Care Counselling Service.

1 x placement in our Counselling Survivors of Sexual Violence and Abuse Service (CASSVA).

1 x placement in our Cancer Counselling Service.

1 x placement in our St Benedict's Hospice Counselling Service

These are open to trainee counsellors on a Foundation Degree or Diploma Level 5 course or qualified counsellors looking to gain some specialist experience.

CASSVA Volunteer Placement

We are delighted to announce a new placement within our established counselling service working with survivors of sexual violence.

To find out more about the CASSVA service, please click here: Counselling for Adult Survivors of Sexual Violence and Abuse.

In this placement, you will begin by working with two clients per week from our GP counselling service whilst you build your confidence in working with clients and understanding our processes.

You will be provided with fortnightly supervision with an experienced supervisor who will support you to develop your skills. After reaching a suitable number of counselling hours and following a review with your supervisor, you will then be able to work with two clients from our CASSVA counselling service.

We provide the opportunity for you to work with up to 4 clients per week, ensuring you gain experience both in general counselling issues in our GP counselling service as well as specialist skills in our CASSVA service.

We will provide you with specialist training in working with sexual violence before you begin working with this client group.

Cancer Counselling Service Volunteer

We are delighted to announce a new placement within our established counselling service working with people who are living with cancer at any stage of their treatment journey, as well as their family.

To find out more about the Cancer Counselling service, please click here: Cancer Care Counselling Service

In this placement, you will begin by working with two clients per week from our GP counselling service whilst you build your confidence of counselling and in understanding our processes.

You will be provided with fortnightly supervision with an experienced supervisor who will support you to develop your skills. After reaching a suitable number of counselling hours and following a review with your supervisor, you will then be able to work with two clients from our Cancer counselling service as well as gaining experience in offering assessments.

We provide the opportunity for you to work with up to 4 clients per week, ensuring you gain experience both in general counselling issues in our GP counselling service as well as specialist skills in our Cancer Counselling service.

We will provide you with specialist training in working with this client group before you begin.

 

St Benedict's Hospice Counselling Volunteer

We are delighted to announce a new placement within our established counselling service working with family members of those accessing St Benedict's Hospice providing counselling for issues of anticipatory grief and bereavement.

To find out more about the St Benedict's Hospice counselling service, please click here: SBH Counselling Service

In this placement, you will begin by working with two clients per week from our GP counselling service whilst you build your confidence of counselling and in understanding our processes.

You will be provided with fortnightly supervision with an experienced supervisor who will support you to develop your skills. After reaching a suitable number of counselling hours and following a review with your supervisor, you will then be able to work with two clients from our SBH counselling service as well as gaining experience in offering assessments.

We provide the opportunity for you to work with up to 4 clients per week, ensuring you gain experience both in general counselling issues in our GP counselling service as well as specialist skills in our SBH Counselling service.

We will provide you with specialist training in working with this client group before you begin.

Please note the placement day for this service is WEDNESDAY.

Primary Care Counselling Service Volunteer

We have an exciting opportunity to offer two counselling placements in our long running primary care counselling volunteer programme.

To find out more about our primary care counselling service, please click here: GP Service

In this placement, you will begin by working with two clients per week whilst you build your confidence of counselling and in understanding our processes before building up to 4 clients per week

You will be provided with fortnightly supervision with an experienced supervisor who will support you to develop your skills.

When

We will be opening our application process on 1st March 2024.

This application process will close at 9am on 1st April 2024 and we cannot accept any applications after this time.

 

Useful Information

Interviews will take place on Wednesday 17th and Thursday 18th  April 2024 at our office in John Street, Sunderland.

Anyone who is successfully offered a placement with us must be available for our induction dates Thursday 23rd and Friday 24th May.

Unfortunately we cannot offer a placement to anyone who cannot attend these dates as they are a requirement of the placement. Only successful applicant will be contacted.

For the placement in CASSVA and Cancer Counselling, we will also provide additional specialist training to work in these areas before placement begins.

How

Please submit an application form via email to office@sunderlandcounselling.org.uk. Please note we do not accept CVs.

The application form can be downloaded from 1st March 2024 below:

 

Please download below from 1st March:

  • Application Form
  • GDPR Privacy Notice for Applicants
  • Equal Opportunity and Diversity Monitoring Document

Meet Our Current and Past Volunteers

Jenny

Jenny Volunteered with us 2019-2020 and has this to say:

I have found my time there on placement an excellent learning experience, with great support from everyone from admin staff to colleagues to managers. I was given a ‘buddy’ who has been really friendly and supportive and SCS has provided monthly supervision which has been an essential part of my development as a trainee counsellor.

The thing I really like about SCS is that it is a well organised and friendly place to be and I really feel part of the team. There are lots of training opportunities and I have also been able to have contact with a wide range of clients, which has also helped me to progress my counselling skills.

"It has been a totally positive experience to be on placement at SCS and I look forward to returning there soon!"

Tristan

Take a look at Tristan's volunteering journey.

I've thoroughly enjoyed my experience with Sunderland counselling service. Being part of such a warm and welcoming team who put their clients and staff at the forefront of everything they do has been a real pleasure. I couldn't feel more supported and have felt like one of the team from the first moment I stepped in. Long may it continue!

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Trustees / Board members

 To join our board of trustees, known as the Management Committee.

SCS is a well-established and independent mental health charity and company limited by guarantee, which is acknowledged for its contribution to the community by our clients, mental health professionals, and local and regional voluntary and statutory agencies. Originally established as a bereavement counselling service, over the years the organisation has grown and developed in response to need and now provides a wide range of counselling and psychological therapy services across the North East of England.

Trustees may already have a background in the charity sector or may be new to the sector; we would be interested to hear from potential trustees from the public and private sectors. Most importantly we need our trustees to have a clear commitment to Sunderland Counselling Service and the work we do.

This is an unpaid role, but expenses are available.

All posts are subject to an enhanced DBS check.

Applications:

If you would like more information or to discuss this role, please contact Toby Sweet, Chief Executive on:

0191 514 7007 or by email toby@sunderlandcounselling.org.uk

Interested applicants should submit a CV and covering letter, setting out why they are interested in the role and what they would bring to it, by email as above.

 

" Working at Sunderland counselling services was such a positive experience "

Volunteering for Us

Whether as a volunteer counsellor, a board member or an admin volunteer, we ensure that as a volunteer for Sunderland Counselling Service you will be able to develop valuable skills and experience.

You will be fully supported on your volunteering journey, and will be provided with training, guidance and clinical support.  You will also get the chance to make new friendships and get a real sense of achievement as you learn how a established counselling organization works to support the community.