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Counselling Service for Young People with Additional Needs

Run by Off the Record

We are pleased to announce that we are continuing our counselling project to continue to support our children and young people as they get a bit older.
This service is delivered in conjunction with Off the Record Twickenham. To start with, we are offering this service only to young people with additional needs who live, work or study in the borough of Richmond aged between 11 and 24. We hope to be able to extend this service later.

Counselling with Off the Record, using Zoom during the pandemic.

No time slots indicated as these are agreed directly with the counsellor.

We are now offering counselling either remotely using Zoom or face-to-face at Heatham House in Twickenham.

If your child or young person would like counselling, please put their name on our waiting list here and we will be in touch.

We have put together an information sheet for children and young people about counselling - it can often help if you show this to your young person before they start.


What is counselling?
 Off the Record is a small charity based in Twickenham which has been offering counselling to young people for 27 years. They will be providing two trained and qualified counsellors who have experience in working with young people, including those with additional needs.
Counselling is for children and young people aged 11 and above who are having problems. Whether it’s anxiety, depression or school refusal or issues with parents, friends or school, talking to a counsellor can help.

The young person can expect a friendly welcome, to be treated with respect and given support to make their own life choices. A young person can expect to be helped by a supportive and non-judgemental counsellor.

The information a young person discusses with the counsellor is confidential and parents will only be consulted if there are serious concerns or if the young person asks for them to be involved. 

Any notes from the sessions will be kept securely and any information passed between Skylarks and Off the Record will be confidential and password protected.

Who, where and when?
This counselling service is available for children and young people with any additional needs or disability who live, work or study in the borough of Richmond and are aged between 11 and 24.
The counselling will take place either on Monday or Wednesday afternoons/evenings, between 4pm and 7pm. Other times may be available by arrangement.

Usually this takes place at Heatham House in Twickenham, but we are also offering this by Zoom or phone call.
Appointments are available at 4pm, 5pm, 6pm and 7pm. Each appointment will last approximately 50 minutes. 

The young people can have up to 12 sessions. We will initially book each person for 4 sessions but they may need fewer or they may need more. We suggest you book 4 sessions initially and we can then cancel appointments if they are not needed.
The counselling is free of charge.
The young person needs to be willing to take part in the counselling. This is not something that parents can force their child to do, although they can strongly encourage them. The young person needs to be willing to communicate verbally with the counsellor. The counsellors will provide props and toys which will help them to express themselves, such as fidget toys, art materials, soft toys and building blocks. The counsellors are aware that the children and young people may have varying levels of communication skills and will work with the young person to draw them out.
The young people are expected to show up for their counselling session. If they miss sessions or they or their parent do not inform the counsellor that they have cancelled or will be late, then we may have to offer the sessions to someone else.

Please note, young people will be asked to give 48 hours notice if they can't make a session, otherwise that session will be lost. They can text the counsellor directly.
If you cannot attend, please give us as much notice as possible so that we can rearrange the session or offer it to someone else.
 If your child is on the waiting list for CAMHS, or is receiving any form of therapy (such as play therapy), please let us know when you get in touch with us and we will discuss this with you. Counsellors can’t offer therapy if a client is already working with someone else,

We usually book 4 sessions initially for your child. This can be extended up to 12 sessions if needed.

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