People need help and want access to affordable or free counselling
Entering 2022 we can’t help but reflect on the last two years. It will come as no surprise that the pandemic has had a huge impact on mental health. The number of people needing to access affordable or free counselling has risen due to job losses and increased mental health challenges.
Only yesterday, it was in the media that alcoholism is on the rise. During the pandemic, an increasing number of people have been drinking alcohol at home. Pub closures and anxiety around public spaces meant people stayed home with friends and family. The volume of alcohol drunk at home increased. People no longer measured the amount of alcohol they poured into their glass. Also, they did not have to worry about the high price of their glass of wine or the taxi home. Deals in supermarkets kept booze cheap and meant we could stock up and stay in. Alcohol flowed later into the evening, unmeasured and uncensored. The gin, mixed not only with tonic, but also with increasing anxiety due to the pandemic.
Other addictions also increased as people lost their jobs, lost their loved ones, lost their sense of direction, and craved an escape from the emotional, financial and psychological pain.
Health anxiety went into a league of its own. Rates of depression soared. Death, illness and loss were reported daily and more people desperately needed help with their emotional and mental well-being.
Help is out there; the question is why is there not more free counselling available to those in need?
As we all know the NHS is under immense pressure. Budgets are stretched, demand has risen dramatically and staff levels have struggled.
It may also be useful to note that free counselling is never actually free. The highly trained, qualified, counsellors and psychotherapists do get paid for the work they do. Thankfully, it is funded by the NHS. The downside is that waiting lists can be very long. However, there is good, professional help out there.
Did you know?
Most private counsellors will have one or two low-cost counselling spaces that they keep in reserve for clients who are struggling financially. It is always worth contacting a private counsellor even if you are on a low income.
Cherry Tree Therapy Centre is fortunate to have an amazing team of counsellors, many of whom volunteer their time to help those who need it most. During the lockdown, we offered free counselling sessions to key workers and clients who were able to have sessions via Zoom.
Thankfully, today we are back in the Centre, seeing our clients face to face. We are not in a position to offer free counselling in person, but we have continued to provide counselling at a drastically reduced rate. We never charge more than £20 for our low-cost counselling service and we will consider a further reduction under certain circumstances.
We understand that at times, life can be tough and private counselling feels like a financial luxury, but it should never be that way. Getting the help you need, when you need it, should never be a struggle.
If you want further information on our low-cost counselling service or just want a chat about the services we offer, get in touch today by clicking the button below.