Counselling Service


I have been working as a counsellor at The Just For Women Centre at Stanley for 3 years. I also help run an NHS counselling service for bereaved parents in County Durham and in addition to that, I work for MIND as a rapid response suicide prevention counsellor. The Centre in Stanley acts as a lifeline for the women who attend. It is a safe-haven where not only support and counselling are provided but women are encouraged to work on their own personal development and self-esteem through workshops and training sessions.

This offers them the knowledge, understanding and education which in turn helps with self-confidence. All of this can have a positive impact on mental health and well being. The creative workshops provide a quiet space to think and reflect and for women to find some relief from negative thoughts or when facing challenging situations.

The Women’s centre café and shop offer a meeting place for the community to visit, the home-cooked food, a welcome and healthy change from the local Fast food outlets. Through my time at the Just For Women Centre, I have supported women with complex mental health issues, trauma and abuse. There is a team of counsellors working many hours a week to provide counselling for those in need. It is a valuable service and I do not know of another service like it in the County. Although as a country we now seem to understand the importance for a focus on improving our mental health services, sadly I am finding that many people are waiting for weeks, sometimes months to access counselling with other agencies.

I talk with pride about my role at The Just For Women Centre. As an experienced professional counsellor, I feel privileged to be working with such a great team and making a difference to the lives of women in this area. The centre is playing a huge part in improving the mental health and well being of women in County Durham and is a much-needed service. Karen Barras, Counsellor

“I know the devastating effects that pregnancy loss of any kind can have on a woman and it is a privilege to be able to share part of a grieving mothers’ journey with them and in doing so also provide support for their mental health and wellbeing”.

Just For Women Client

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