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How can I access counselling?

How can I access counselling?

Please note, we are NOT a crisis service. If you feel unsafe and need help right now, call 000 (triple zero).

For urgent counselling support, including 24/7 crisis assistance, view our list of external services.


How can I access counselling?

We provide one-off and ongoing counselling appointments:

  • Face-to-face for individuals, couples and families, at our centres across metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria, in line with current COVID-19 restrictions and COVIDSafe guidelines. 
  • Over the telephone for individuals. If you are looking for relationship telephone counselling, please contact us to talk about your individual circumstances.
  • Online Counselling via video-conferencing (Zoom) for individuals and couples. In some circumstances, such as during the COVID-19 pandemic, we may also be able to offer video counselling for families.

We also offer Single Session Consultations from our centres in Ballarat and Kew. You can read more about Single Session Consultations further down this page.


How long do sessions last?

Standard sessions last 50 minutes. While some concerns can be resolved in a few sessions, others take longer.

At an agreed time, your counsellor will be available to speak with you in-person, over the telephone or via Zoom video-conferencing.

At the end of the session, you can book another appointment with the same counsellor if you’d like to do so. 


How much does it cost?

We are a not-for-profit community organisation and our counselling services are only partly government funded, so fees are normally charged. However, we do try to make our services as affordable as possible. Please contact your nearest centre for more information.


When are sessions available?

Centre opening hours vary, however most centres offer evening sessions as well as sessions during business hours. Please contact your nearest centre for more information.


Do you offer counselling in other languages?

Interpreters are available on request. When you contact us to make an appointment, please let us know about any language or communication needs.


Can I choose to see a male or female counsellor?

We have both male and female counsellors available. We can provide more information on our counsellors when you contact your nearest centre.


What if I need to cancel my appointment?

We require at least 24 hours’ notice for cancelling appointments. If you don’t notify us within this time frame, a fee may be applicable. If you need to cancel an appointment, please contact the centre as soon as possible.


Do I need a referral?

No, you don’t need a referral to access our counselling services. You can contact your nearest centre directly to make an appointment.

If another service or practitioner is referring you to our counselling service, they may facilitate a ‘warm referral’. This means that they contact us to introduce us to you. This is always done with your permission, either in your presence or after you have signed a form agreeing for this to happen. This can help us to understand your situation, so we are well-equipped to be able to respond to your needs

Single Session Consultations

A Single Session Consultation is an evidence-informed, client-focused counselling session designed to help you manage your immediate concerns.

The focus of the session is on your greatest worry, challenge or difficulty and what you want to achieve from your meeting. Sessions are collaborative and responsive; focus on your key concerns and goals, and you and your practitioner work together on strategies for change. Our aim is for you to leave the session with some ideas or strategies to try out.

While Single Session Consultations focus on your greatest concern, they can still be suitable for those with multiple and or complex issues. You may have a lot going on, but still find a single session to be helpful to you and your circumstances.


Who can attend?

Single Session Consultations are suitable for individuals, couples or families, and can be facilitated by one counsellor or sometimes two.


What does it involve?

Before you attend a session, you’ll be sent a questionnaire to fill in, to help your practitioner find out more about your main concerns and goals for the session. You’ll need to complete and return this questionnaire when you attend your session.

Sessions usually last one and a half hours, which is longer than a standard counselling session.

After your session, your counsellor will arrange a follow-up phone call to see how you’re going and discuss options for further support.


What if I need more than one session?

If you attend a Single Session Consultation, you can still access our other services including ongoing counselling. Experience tells us about half the time people will come back for further counselling, while the rest are happy with one session. Both outcomes are okay. You are always welcome to contact us if you need further support.


Where are sessions available?

We offer Single Session Consultations face-to-face (where COVIDSafe) at our Ballarat and Kew Centres. These centres also offer telephone appointments for individuals, and video appointments for individuals, couples and families. Find out more or make an appointment by contacting your nearest centre below.

We also offer Single Session Consultations for parents through the home visiting service of our early matters program in Sunshine and Ballarat.

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