Making the decision to see a counsellor can be a difficult process. Many people feel a little anxious when they first contact us or when they come for their first appointment.
Intake sessions are provided at no out of pocket expense to the client. If the counselling is for a child, the intake interview will be between their primary caregivers and the Intake Officer. Our Intake Officers are qualified counsellors or psychologists and will discuss your concerns and talk about your goals for counselling.
Following the completion of your Intake session/s a counsellor will be allocated. Counselling sessions are approximately 50 minutes in duration, although they may be less depending on the age of the client. Appointments generally occur on a weekly or fortnightly basis. Counselling sessions may involve child sessions, parent sessions or a combination depending on the individual needs of your family. The exact number of sessions provided will also depend on the individual needs and will be discussed with your counsellor.
Bravehearts Psychologists and Counsellors use a framework that focuses on evidence based best practice interventions to manage psychological symptoms that have resulted from child sexual assault. The basis of our counselling model includes:
- Children/young people do not need discuss the sexual assault/s they have experienced. This is because it may prove traumatic for the child/young person and it is not necessary for improvement in symptoms to occur. Additionally, questioning the child may impede any potential investigation.
- Our primary role is therapeutic and not forensic assessment.
- We provide counselling in a nonjudgmental, confidential, safe and supportive environment.
- Our Psychologists and Counsellors work alongside other agencies working with the client/client's family as identified. This may involve collaborative case management, including interagency meetings.
Counselling for Children and Families
Not all children that have experienced child sexual assault need counselling. When children are experiencing symptoms that impact negatively on their home, school and social life, it may be an indication that counselling may be helpful. Common symptoms that could indicate your child would benefit from counselling include:
Anxiety and worry;
Problem sexual behaviour;
Withdrawal and isolation;
School problems; and/or
Often families who have been impacted by child sexual assault experience adverse effects, such as anxiety, depression, anger and further report difficulties managing their child's symptoms. The Bravehearts counselling service is able to assist in supporting families through this time.
Child sexual assault can have long term impacts including mental health issues, emotional problems, relationship difficulties and physical concerns. Bravehearts is able to offer counselling and support for adult survivors of child sexual assault.
To find out more information, please call 1800 BRAVE 1 (1800 272 831) or contact us and one of our qualified staff will contact you.