Sandra Hewett, FdA, MBACP (Accredited), AMBICA
Hello, I am an accredited, Humanistic counsellor and see clients for long- and short-term counselling. Most commonly I help adults with depression and anxiety, offering a therapy that combines emotional support and CBT mindfulness. I am also an accredited fertility counsellor with experience in donor conception and families of difference. With training as a coach I can also offer a solution focussed approach.
I see clients both face to face and by Skype and FAceTime. I have a dedicated room at my home in a quiet cul-de-sac in Bookham, which is between Guildford and Leatherhead. Parking is easy. If you haven't been to counselling before I recognise it is a bold step to take, but I know my clients feel it makes a big difference to their lives.
I see private patients self referring directly to me, plus patients referred from Kingston Assisted Conception Unit, St Helier and Epsom NHS Trust and two private clinics.
How do I work?
My core approach is Humanistic, which focuses on your emotional wellbeing and is client-centred. We work with the present rather than the past. I also blend in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) which helps you challenge negative thoughts and core beliefs. The initial session is an assessment so will entail some questioning. After that we work through dialogue; I listen without judging you, making observations and gently challenging. A session might be just talking through an issue or we might take the whole time to complete a thought record. Our goal is to resolve your issues and find a way of living a more fulfilled and happy life.
How do I help reduce anxiety?
In addition to a therapeutic conversation my counselling includes exercises - such as visualisation and self awareness - as well as mindfulness relaxation. Other exercises can help with self esteem and confidence issues.
So how many sessions will you need?
Creating change takes time, so while you can feel better and learn self-help techniques in two to three sessions, you really need to allow for eight or more sessions. Think of it as an investment in your health. My counselling takes you through a course of gaining awareness, acceptance and then finding new ways of thinking, feeling and behaving. After each session you need to process what you have discovered and possibly put new ideas or techniques into practice. This doesn't happen overnight, and you can have setbacks, so I would encourage you to see this as a weekly process over two months or more.
What do my clients say?
“I definitely feel different a lot of the time now. Before (counselling) I felt lost and didn’t know who I was, now I understand things more. I have been able to recognise when I'm feeling low and have coping methods now which help pull me out before I spiral.”
“I feel there has been a big leap forward in the last month. I’ve stopped thinking about past events all the time and that has helped me to put it behind me and focus on now.”
Coming through cancer treatment and my loss of fertility, Sandra has helped me to think through what has happened to me - what I have been through, and to get a broader perspective. Through the counselling, I became aware of the blame and guilt that I felt and she has challenged my thinking. I like the fact that there is also a practical aspect to her approach.
Situations I deal with include: workplace stress, relationship issues, bullying, bereavement, career counselling, infertility, creating a family through donor conception, eating disorders, low self-esteem and confidence. I work with hope and - sometimes - humour. I also offer Skype, email and telephone counselling. Please call or email me for an initial conversation.
I am happy to talk through your situation initially, please contact me by phone or email.
Training, qualifications & experience
Foundation Degree in Humanistic Counselling (FdA - University of Greenwich)
CBT Introductory Course (SDS Seminars)
Introductory Course in Infertility Counselling (British Infertility Counselling Association)
Couple counselling in a fertility setting (BICA)
Safeguarding Children Level 3 (Barts Hosptial)
Mental Health in Adolescence (Young Minds)
Coaching Certificate (Coaching Development)
General experience counselling in a GP practice
Former Information Officer of the British Infertility Counselling Association (4 years)
Course facilitator for the Donor Conception Network - Preparation for Parenting; Talking & Telling
Fertility counsellor for patients at Kingston Hospital Assisted Conception Until (2016-present)
One of two counsellors at St Barts Centre for Reproductive Medicine (2016)
Counsellor at St Helier and Epsom NHS Trust Assisted Conception Unit (2014 - present)
Fertility counsellor at Thames Valley Fertility (2018 to present)
Student Counsellor at Guildford College (2015-16)
The Parenting Puzzle (Surrey County Council)
Telephone Counselling (Family Line)
Registered / Accredited
Being registered/accredited with a professional body means an individual must have achieved a substantial level of training and experience approved by their member organisation.
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
Other areas of counselling I deal with
Donor conception and alternative family structures.
£60 for 50 minutes session, face to face or Skype. Discounts for six or ten sessions.
Fertility counselling: £80 individual (50 minutes), £90 couple (1 hour).
Prior to training I worked in public relations and have run my own business for several years. Commuting to London for ten years, I have experience of the pressures of work on individual and family life.