Voluntary Counselling Placement (Internship)

Are you looking for an honorary therapist role in a counselling placement that challenges as much as it supports you?

Ready for 4 weekly client hours? Want to learn what life is really like as a therapist? Keen to stretch yourself and prepare for private practice? Well, you’ve come to the right place.

Being an honorary therapist on placement with The Awareness Centre will teach you many things to prepare you for your practice. Wherever you are in your development, we can support you into becoming the therapist you’re meant to be. Choose our NHS counselling placement and you’ll learn how to work in a focused, effective way with a diverse client base – as well as gaining the experience of working alongside a multi-disciplinary team within IAPT.

Choose to work as an honorary therapist in our low-cost counselling service placement and you’ll learn how to provide a full clinical assessment to work long term with clients, which is excellent preparation for working in private practice. With the support of first-class supervision and training, in both the NHS and low-cost placements you will learn the rigours of good practice management.

We take on counsellors, psychotherapists and counselling psychologists who are starting out with client work, or who are on track towards qualifying and/or becoming accredited with BACP, UKCP or BPS.

What’s unique about TAC is that we offer a three-level placement, depending on where you are in your development as a therapist. Here’s what each placement level involves:

This Counselling Placement is for trainee therapists who have who have completed their foundation year, or level 3 certificate and are starting their counselling or psychotherapy diploma, but who have not accumulated many or any client hours.

      • You are a student counsellor, psychotherapist or counselling psychologist in the first year of your diploma course.
      • You are a student counsellor who needs to accumulate generic counselling hours to enrol onto your Psychosexual and Relationship therapy course.
      • You have a letter from your tutor or college to say you are ready for clinical work on a voluntary placement at TAC.
      • You are in personal therapy and will continue therapy throughout your placement with TAC.
      • You can work within the NHS and low-cost Counselling Service.
      • You will complete a TAC training course on managing risk, good practice management and developing your skills in clinical assessment.

Counselling placement for trainee therapists who have accumulated 25-65 supervised client hours.

      • You are a student counsellor, psychotherapist or counselling psychologist in the second year of your diploma course.
      • You have accumulated 25-65 face to face supervised client hours either within TAC or  with another counselling organisation, agency or charity.
      • You have been in personal therapy for at least a year and will continue in therapy throughout your placement with TAC.
      • You can work within the low-cost counselling service and/or the NHS counselling service, seeing up to eight clients per week on a double placement.
      • You will be in fortnightly supervision seeing up to 4 clients per week or weekly supervision seeing up to 8 clients per week if you are able to do a double placement.
      • You will move onto the Level 3 placement once your TAC supervisor and counselling manager agrees.

Counselling Placement is for therapists who have over 65+ supervised client hours and are working towards qualification.

      • You are a student counsellor, psychotherapist or counselling psychologist reaching the end of your training.
      • You have accumulated 65+ face to face supervised client hours.
      • You are in weekly personal therapy.
      • You can work within the low-cost or NHS counselling service. You can choose to see up to eight clients per week by volunteering on two counselling placements.
      • If you are a student on the psychosexual and relationships training then you can work within our psychosexual placement seeing individuals and couples within the low cost counselling service.
      • You will be in weekly or fortnightly supervision, depending on how many clinical hours you do.
Criteria - Level 1

This Counselling Placement is for trainee therapists who have who have completed their foundation year, or level 3 certificate and are starting their counselling or psychotherapy diploma, but who have not accumulated many or any client hours.

      • You are a student counsellor, psychotherapist or counselling psychologist in the first year of your diploma course.
      • You are a student counsellor who needs to accumulate generic counselling hours to enrol onto your Psychosexual and Relationship therapy course.
      • You have a letter from your tutor or college to say you are ready for clinical work on a voluntary placement at TAC.
      • You are in personal therapy and will continue therapy throughout your placement with TAC.
      • You can work within the NHS and low-cost Counselling Service.
      • You will complete a TAC training course on managing risk, good practice management and developing your skills in clinical assessment.
Criteria - Level 2

Counselling placement for trainee therapists who have accumulated 25-65 supervised client hours.

      • You are a student counsellor, psychotherapist or counselling psychologist in the second year of your diploma course.
      • You have accumulated 25-65 face to face supervised client hours either within TAC or  with another counselling organisation, agency or charity.
      • You have been in personal therapy for at least a year and will continue in therapy throughout your placement with TAC.
      • You can work within the low-cost counselling service and/or the NHS counselling service, seeing up to eight clients per week on a double placement.
      • You will be in fortnightly supervision seeing up to 4 clients per week or weekly supervision seeing up to 8 clients per week if you are able to do a double placement.
      • You will move onto the Level 3 placement once your TAC supervisor and counselling manager agrees.
Criteria - Level 3

Counselling Placement is for therapists who have over 65+ supervised client hours and are working towards qualification.

      • You are a student counsellor, psychotherapist or counselling psychologist reaching the end of your training.
      • You have accumulated 65+ face to face supervised client hours.
      • You are in weekly personal therapy.
      • You can work within the low-cost or NHS counselling service. You can choose to see up to eight clients per week by volunteering on two counselling placements.
      • If you are a student on the psychosexual and relationships training then you can work within our psychosexual placement seeing individuals and couples within the low cost counselling service.
      • You will be in weekly or fortnightly supervision, depending on how many clinical hours you do.
Placement Counsellors at The Awareness Centre

Our placement is like an internship where you can graduate to the next level by building your experience and confidence in working with diverse client groups within our counselling services:

  1. Our Low-Cost Counselling Service offers therapy on an open-ended basis at one of our counselling centres in Clapham or Tooting. The amount clients pay depends on their income. Working as an honorary therapist in our low-cost service helps you learn about good practice management, including note-taking and handling fees, and allows you to develop long-term therapeutic relationships with your clients. You can see up to four clients per week on daytime slots Monday to Sunday, and on Friday evenings. This is suitable for level 1, 2 and 3 placement therapists.
  2. Our NHS Counselling Service involves seeing up to four patients a week on a short-term basis within GP surgeries in Lambeth and Wandsworth and at Jubilee East Health Centre in Sutton. TAC is contracted by the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM) and South West London and St Georges Mental Health NHS Trust (SWLSTG). We work in partnership with Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) to provide our NHS counselling services. This is suitable for level 1, 2 and 3 placement therapists.

All clients are triaged within our counselling service.

How to apply for a counselling placement at TAC

  • Apply online. Complete the online application form by clicking on the ‘Counselling Placement Application form’ button below.
  • If you meet our criteria, the Counselling Department will invite you to attend a group interview and speak to you about slot availability for our NHS and/or LCCS placements.
  • If successful, you will receive an offer of a placement via email. Please respond within 24 hours.
  • You will need an enhanced DBS, which TAC can arrange if required.

Offers of placement are made subject to a three-month probation period, within which you will be monitored, supported and mentored in all aspects of this rewarding placement. For any related enquires for a counselling placement please email placements@theawarenesscentre.com or call 020 8673 4545.

We are particualry interested in hearing from Spanish and Portuguese speaking therapists to join our Multilingual Counselling Service.

Our Clinical Supervisors

Click on the profiles below to get to know our team

What therapists say about their experience on counselling placement at TAC:

I am placed in NHS and in Low-cost and in both of my placements The Awareness Centre has been a massive learning curve for me. The placement have helped me gain knowledge and experience through working with clients.

Özlem Kaldı, DA12

The Awareness Centre gave me my formative experiences as a counsellor for which I will always be grateful. They have been flexible and supportive throughout my 2 year placement and I have gained valuable experience in both open-ended counselling as well as short-term work in the NHS.

Ben

I have meant to leave some feedback about my experience as a Placement Therapist at TAC but just never got round to it. However, following my second anniversary at TAC as a placement therapist in March 2020, I wanted to comment on how I’ve found the experience so far.

Although daunting, to begin with, TAC has allowed me to grow in my independence as a therapist in training. The way the centre is run has helped me to hit the ground running with minimal assistance. The structure at Clapham is organised, and I have found the Clapham Reception and administration team very helpful and responsive. This method has been useful for equipping me as a private therapist in the future.

I have kept the same supervisor since the onset of my placement and pleased to report that Karen Dempsey has played an enormous role in boosting my confidence. I have seen her demonstrate maturity and genuine concern for her supervisees, including myself, at all times.

Although she has a keen eye for detail, risk issues, governance and is a seasoned therapist herself, Karen strives to make each supervisee feel valued. The way she works with supervisees means that I have absolute trust in her judgement. She never positions herself to be the only expert in the room and encourages a culture of learning amongst her group and my peers. One valuable lesson I will take away from working with Karen is that I feel congruent when working with her and always feel free to be transparent even when things may not have gone as planned. I can always rely on her sensitive and supportive approach to steer things back to how it should be or to gain the lesson required.

When my time with TAC comes to an end, I will surely be very grateful for the wonderful opportunity that The Awareness Centre made possible and all the fantastic people and clients I have been privileged to meet and support in my learning journey.

B.O, BR7

JOIN OUR PLACEMENT PROGRAMME

For any related enquires please call 020 8673 4545, or apply online.

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