We support people with experience of homelessness to improve their mental health and wellbeing.
Our 1-1 counselling service aims to promote good mental health and wellbeing by providing a high quality and professional service in a confidential and safe setting. The service is free of charge for all customers of Evolve Housing + Support.
Counselling is based on the building of a close and trusting relationship between the counsellor and the client by regular weekly meetings. These meetings are for 50 minutes and are offered on the same day, at the same time and with the same counsellor each week. It can help people to talk about their experiences, make sense of them and provide a space that allows people to express difficult thoughts and feelings and learn how to manage them in a more constructive way. Counsellors do not offer advice or tell clients what to do, nor do they represent or advocate on their client’s behalf to other organisations or individuals.
Counselling can be useful in helping people cope with various issues including:
All of our counsellors are either fully qualified or in the last stages of their training, and work in different ways to help their clients. Most usually they work in an ‘integrative’ way – this means they adapt different approaches and methods to suit each individual client.
Customers are able to access six counselling sessions, with an option to extend to 12 if required, with volunteer counsellors. The counsellors provide support for emotional, behavioural, or relationship problems using approaches including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Gestalt depending on individual needs. The City of London Corporation’s charity, City Bridge Trust, currently funds the project, including a Health and Wellbeing Manager post to oversee the work. For more information on how counselling works at Evolve and getting access, see the service leaflet.
Our counselling service is part of a wider programme which includes health and wellbeing workshops designed and co-delivered by customers, volunteers, staff, and partner organisations. These workshops cover a wide range of topics to support the diverse needs of our customers. For more information, see our work and learning programme page.
Sometimes it takes someone else to say something to you to hear it and for things to click into place. Sometimes with me, a lot of it is having someone there to listen makes me realise that there are people out there who will help and will listen and who understand. It gives you a bit more faith in people in the world, and I don’t like people too much. But the counselling itself really helped.
Anonymous customer, 2019