FAQ's

MIND, the mental health charity, describe counselling as ‘providing a regular time and space for people to talk about their troubles and explore difficult feelings in an environment that is dependable, free from intrusion and confidential. A counsellor should respect your viewpoint while helping you to deal with specific problems, cope with crises, improve your relationships, or develop better ways of living.

Despite the name, counsellors don’t usually offer advice. Instead, they help you to gain insight into your feelings and behaviour and to change your behaviour, if necessary. They do this by listening to what you have to say and commenting on it from their particular professional perspective.

The word ‘counselling’ covers a broad spectrum, from someone who is highly trained to someone who uses counselling skills (listening, reflecting back what you say, or clarifying) as part of another role, such as nursing. We use the term here to mean a talking therapy delivered by a trained professional.

There are many definitions and explanations of counselling and therapy. A further description of counselling can be seen on the website of the British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy (BACP).

About Val

After an early career as a Police Officer with critical incident training and then later in the business world, I became interested in ‘mental health’ and what makes people behave the way they do – so I studied psychology.

I’ve worked with large and small organisations and have assisted people with the numerous issues which cause sickness absence and affect relationships and performance. I went on to  gain an Advanced Diploma in Humanistic Counselling and started a private practice in 1996. I’ve provided counselling for individuals from all walks of life, from prisoners to politicians – and gained a BA Counselling Degree accredited by Surrey University. I am currently providing assistance to one of the UK’s ambulance services.

I have the pieces of paper and the experience. I have both the robustness to hear traumatic testimony and the warmth which helps recovery. I’m victim-offender mediation trained, a Member of the British Association of Counselling & Psychotherapy, registered on the accredited voluntary register and have been a Course Tutor for the Counselling & Psychotherapy Central Awarding Body. I have provided hundreds of voluntary hours of counselling for the British Tinnitus Association, for a Rape Crisis Centre, guest lecture at Surrey University and am a member of the the College of Sexual and Relationship Therapists.   I am also a member of the Association of Business Psychology and a Member of the British Neuroscience Association

I’m City & Guilds Assessor trained, have completed a Human Sexuality programme with the National Council of Psychotherapists and am also a published freelance writer. I founded a national Charity, have been a subject expert for the BBC and have a qualification in animal husbandry. My spare time is spent either with my partner and God-children or angling and coaching young people in the sport.

You don’t have to lie on a couch (unless you wish to !) – you can choose a chair you are comfortable to sit in and in the Ash Green counselling room, you have a view of the trees and the birds which many people find peaceful and relaxing. There is an en-suite toilet and refreshments are available.

The sessions are undisturbed and completely safe and confidential.

In training, I was a client myself and know what is required to gain the maximum comfort and benefit from the counselling experience.

You are the best expert on you. However…

– I won’t judge you and I won’t tell you what to do – but I will stay with you if you feel stuck. That’s what makes therapy so liberating, therapeutic and effective.

– I won’t rescue you but I will support you and help you to help yourself.

– I won’t make you say anything but I will be there for whatever you want to share with me.

– I won’t tell you how to feel but I will not argue with how you do feel.

– I will respect your privacy, dignity, autonomy and confidentiality.

– I aim to offer you sincerity, empathy and authenticity.

– In counseling jargon terms, I work in an ‘integrated’ way within a ‘Humanistic’ model.

I will invite you to agree a contract with me which protects your confidentiality and confirms how we will work together. Evidence suggests that counselling and psychotherapy is most effective when the counsellor and client are clear on how they are working together.

Sessions last for 50 minutes.

We’ll look at our diaries and normally attempt to arrange sessions on a regular basis. Many people feel helped after one session, most commit to between six and twelve sessions and very occasionally, far longer term therapy and counselling is required for people with multiple and deep seated issues.

At the first session, we’ll explore your needs and your questions and agree a way of working together.

Counselling and psychotherapy is £85 for individuals, £90 for couples, payable by cheque or cash.

Group and Organisational therapy fees – by arrangement, please contact Val.

Ardol House
Hazel Road
Ash Green
GU12 6HP

Tel: 01252 336114

Off Road Parking Available

Nearest Train Stations: Ash, Ash Vale, North Camp

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MIND, the mental health charity, describe counselling as ‘providing a regular time and space for people to talk about their troubles and explore difficult feelings in an environment that is dependable, free from intrusion and confidential. A counsellor should respect your viewpoint while helping you to deal with specific problems, cope with crises, improve your relationships, or develop better ways of living.

Despite the name, counsellors don’t usually offer advice. Instead, they help you to gain insight into your feelings and behaviour and to change your behaviour, if necessary.

They do this by listening to what you have to say and commenting on it from their particular professional perspective. The word ‘counselling’ covers a broad spectrum, from someone who is highly trained to someone who uses counselling skills (listening, reflecting back what you say, or clarifying) as part of another role, such as nursing. We use the term here to mean a talking therapy delivered by a trained professional.

Sessions usually take place once a week. Making this regular commitment gives you a better chance of finding out why you are having difficulties’.

All professional counsellors work to a Code of Ethics which are designed to give maximum protection and benefit to the client.

I choose the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) Ethical framework, which embraces a set of values, moral qualities and principles such as trustworthiness, autonomy and justice.

Full details of the code can be seen on the BACP website.

https://www.bacp.co.uk/events-and-resources/ethics-and-standards/ethical-framework-for-the-counselling-professions/

As a member of the BACP, I take these ethics seriously – I can, quite rightly, loose my membership if I break the code.

Counselling is confidential however I do invite clients to comment on how they have experienced me and therapy.  Below is a sample of some feedback.

“No one has ever ‘got me’ before. Val did”
– Helen

“Val has such a calm voice and presence that it was hard to remain stressed out”
– Tracy

“I feel free for the first time in my life. Thank you Val” 
– Anthony

“Its hard to put into words, but I knew I could trust you and could tell you my inner most thoughts and feelings which I’d never told anyone else”
– Raj

“You helped me accept redundancy and saved my marriage – and I thought counseling wouldn’t be for me !”
– Chris

Contact Me

Ardol House, Hazel Road, Ash Green, GU12 6HP
Tel: 01252 336114