Inverclyde Women's Aid is a voluntary organisation established in 1985 and a registered charity in Scotland. Our aim is to provide support to women, children and young people who are, or have, experienced domestic abuse. We provide refuge support to women and their children who urgently require a safe place to stay. Our counselling service is free and confidential, and is being offered to women that are or have experienced domestic abuse.
What is Counselling?
Counselling is a type of therapy that involves talking to a therapeutic counsellor about your thoughts, feelings and experiences within a confidential setting. This is to work together with the counsellor to better understand thoughts, emotions or behaviour that might be causing you difficulties, and develop ways to help you help yourself, whether this is learning to cope better or deciding to make changes in your life.
A counsellor will listen to you and believe you without judgement.
Will I Benefit From Counselling?
Our service is free of charge and is specifically for women that are currently experiencing, have experienced or been affected by domestic or sexual abuse.
Abuse can impact people in a range of ways and our counsellors will work with you to establish what in your life is causing you difficulties and what you would like to work towards in counselling.
Counselling can help peoples understanding and coping in number of situations, including;
- Difficult life events, such as a recent loss.
- Upsetting or traumatic experiences, whether this is a recent, or past trauma.
- Difficult emotions, such as low self esteem.
- Mental or Physical health problems, such as anxiety, depression and long term illness.
What do Counselling Sessions Involve?
Sessions are normally weekly and last around 50 minutes. You will be offered up to 16 sessions initially, meeting with the same counsellor every session, and we will try and offer you a time that is most convenient for you.
Counselling sessions are normally held in support rooms in the Inverclyde Women’s Aid office, but if there is a reason you cannot do this alternative settings can be discussed.
Am I Ready for Counselling?
Although some people find immediate relief in beginning to talk in counselling, some people find they feel worse initially due to talking about difficult experiences and painful emotions they’ve not thought about for a while. If you are not sure that counselling’s right for you at this time it might be helpful to think about what you would like to gain from counselling and whether you feel in a good enough place to start talking about emotions and thoughts that are potentially distressing.
The first session is a chance to get to know a bit more about the service we offer, and explore with a counsellor whether it is the right for you at this time.
Training, qualifications & experience
All our counsellors are experienced counsellors specialising in trauma and domestic abuse, and are registered members of the BACP and Counselling members of COSCA with a Postgraduate Diploma/MSc in Counselling.
Member organisations *
College of Sexual and Relationship Therapists (COSCA)
COSCA is the professional body for counselling and psychotherapy in Scotland, and seeks to advance all forms of counselling and psychotherapy and the use of counselling skills by promoting best practice and through the delivery of a range of sustainable services. COSCA Counsellor Accreditation is a pathway to entry onto the UKRC.
It is a requirement of all individual and organisational members of COSCA to abide by its Statement of Ethics and Code of Practice and be accountable to the Complaints Procedure. Accredited by the Professional Standards Authority.
British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy (BACP)
BACP is one of the UK’s leading professional bodies for counselling and psychotherapy with around 60,000 members. The Association has several different categories of membership, including Student Member, Individual Member, Registered Member MBACP, Registered Accredited Member MBACP (Accred) and Senior Registered Accredited Member MBACP (Snr Acccred).
Registered and accredited members are listed on the BACP Register, which shows that they have demonstrated BACP’s recommended standards for training, proficiency and ethical practice. The BACP Register was the first register of psychological therapists to be accredited by the Professional Standards Authority (PSA).
Accredited and senior accredited membership are voluntary categories for members who choose to undertake a rigorous application and assessment process to demonstrate additional standards around practice, training and supervision.
Individual members will have completed an appropriate counselling or psychotherapy course and started to practise, but they won’t appear on the BACP Register until they've demonstrated that they meet the standards for registration. Student members are still in the process of completing their training.
All members are bound by the BACP Ethical Framework and a Professional Conduct Procedure.
Areas of counselling we deal with
Other areas of counselling we deal with
This service is specifically for women that are seeking help for issues relating to domestic abuse, but we recognise that abuse and trauma can effect many other areas of your life and your counsellor will work with you establishing the effects of abuse, and what you would like to work on.
Our service is free, and specifically for women that have experienced or been affected by domestic abuse, whether this is ongoing, recent or far in the past.
This project is funded by the National Lottery through the Big Lottery Fund.
When we work
Monday: 9.30am-4.30pm Tuesday: 9.30am-4.30pm Thursday: 9.30am-4.30pm Friday: 9.30am-4.30pm
If you think you would like to see a counsellor you can call, write or email and ask for a referral form
If a counsellor isn’t available to take your call your contact details will be passed on and a counsellor will get in touch to arrange an initial appointment with yourself as soon as possible. If it’s not safe to leave a message please let us know.
Following the initial appointment you might be placed on a waiting list, depending on counsellors availability
Inverclyde Women’s Aid will ensure that information remains confidential within the organisation. However we are obliged to pass on any concerns of child protection, abuse of vulnerable adults, or circumstances where someone is in immediate extreme risk or involved in serious criminal conduct to relevant agencies.
Your counsellor will discuss confidentiality in more detail with you during your first appointment