Andy Lawrenson M.A. MBACP & NCS
Hello and welcome! If you are here reading this, then you have found the courage and resolve to take that vital first step - acknowledging that you need some help with a conflict that you feel stuck with, and reaching out to talk with someone. I started to work as a bereavement counsellor in 1999, and now regularly work with anxiety, phobias, relationships, addictions and a range of other issues.
Here are some comments from previous clients who have recently attended counselling with me .
“I was only talking about you this morning. Everything is really good, in fact more than good and it’s thanks to our sessions . . . (Kay, Darlington)
"Its been a pleasure at a time that would have been much darker if we had not been able to rely on you. Personally, thank you . . . (Geoff, Richmond)
My journey into counselling started in 1998 when I completed a training course for CRUSE bereavement care. I then worked as a bereavement counsellor for individuals and groups, whilst studying for an Advanced Certificate, then an M.A. in Counselling Studies at Durham University. I qualified in 2002, then worked as a counsellor within a drug and alcohol agency, and taught counselling at Sunderland University.
How can Counselling Help?
All of us have issues that feel overwhelming at some point in our lives - knots of anger, frustration, anxiety, sadness or loss. If you choose to come to me for counselling, I will work with you to help unravel these knots. I will walk with you on your journey through your issues, and listen to what you have to say without judging you. In this way we will peel back the layers together, to get right down to what is really going on for you. I will strive to help you express your darker thoughts and emotions that create depression, anxiety and frustration. Giving you the tools you need to look at your life from a fresh perspective and giving you wings to move on into a clearer and brighter future.
You would decide when and with what frequency you attend sessions, you can attend weekly, fortnightly or monthly, depending on your circumstance and finances. I also offer evening sessions to fit around your work commitments if necessary.
What to expect in the first session
I offer the first session at a reduced rate and a sliding scale of charges to suit your budget for subsequent sessions.
The first session lasts for for one hour, which in practice is around 55 minutes of actual counselling. I open the session by talking about confidentiality and safeguarding, say a few words about myself, and invite you to ask any questions that you may have about me. Counselling is a two-way process, so I work really hard to help you to feel safe and comfortable working with me.
This usually takes no more than a few minutes, the rest of this time is completely yours to talk about the issues that are troubling you. I will not pressure you into opening up before you are ready, I believe that trust and rapport with a counsellor is earned, not a given, and I trust you will open up to a level that you feel comfortable with.
Training, qualifications & experience
- B.A. (Hons) Music
- Extensive Experience in Music and Therapy
- M.A. Counselling Studies
- Voluntary and Private Practice
I started counselling in 1999 after initial training with CRUSE Bereavement Care. I completed an M.A. in Counselling Studies at Durham University, qualifying in 2002, then worked as a counsellor within a drug and alcohol agency, and taught counselling at Sunderland University.
I now still work in voluntary practice for CRUSE as a bereavement counsellor, and in private practice working with individuals and couples over a range of different issues.
I am a member of BACP (British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapists) and the NCS (National Counselling Society)
British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy
BACP is one of the UK’s largest professional bodies for counselling and psychotherapy. Therapists registered with the Association fall into a number of different membership categories such as Individual Member, Registered Member MBACP and Registered Member MBACP (Accred), each standing for different levels of training and experience. MBACP (Accred) and MBACP (Snr Accred) members have achieved a substantial level of training and experience approved by the Association.
Registered members can be found on the BACP Register, which was the first register to achieve Accredited Voluntary Register status issued by the Professional Standards Authority. Individual Members will have completed an appropriate counselling and/or psychotherapy course and started to practise, but will not appear on the BACP Register until they've progressed to Registered Member MBACP status.
All members are bound by a Code of Ethics & Practice and a Complaints Procedure. Accredited by the Professional Standards Authority.
Accredited register membership
Accredited Register Scheme
The Accredited Register Scheme was set up in 2013 by the Department of Health (DoH) as a way to recognise organisations that hold voluntary registers which meet certain standards. These standards are set by the Professional Standards Authority (PSA).
This therapist has indicated that they belong to an Accredited Register.
Areas of counselling I deal with
- £45 per hour individuals
- £50 per hour for couples
These are full prices for sessions, but if offer a sliding scale of charges if fees are an issue, as I do not like to see people turned away on a cost basis. Please call me on 07970478239 to discuss.
My approach is broadly person centred. I believe that we all are experts in our own affairs, and that deep down underneath the layers, we all have the answers to our conflicts within ourselves. My privilege in working with you as a counsellor will be to help you find the answers that feel right for you, enabling you to move towards a sense of resolution.
As a working musician, I have a deep interest and extensive experience in using music in a therapeutic setting. Currently I am studying for a diploma in sound therapy, run reminiscence sessions for dementia sufferers, among other musical activities.