Counsellors work with a variety of clients from different backgrounds and ages, with a diverse range of difficulties and challenges. Therapists work with clients with empathy and understanding, to explore unique experiences, feelings and inner thoughts. Clients can work with counsellors in a safe and non-judgmental environment to explore their needs and assist them to problem solve.
Counselling may be long or short term and involves an array of evidence-based modalities to assist clients with their everyday needs.
Goals of counselling vary between individual clients. Examples of issues explored in therapy include (but are not limited to) emotional recognition and regulation, relationship problems, grief, mental health issues, parenting, domestic violence, sexual violence and social interactions.
Short examples of ways that we have assisted Participants in Counselling:
We have helped people with disability achieve their goals of having successful relationships, including exploring what makes a good long-term friendship or romantic relationship. Factors such as tenets of a healthy relationship, healthy communication and conflict resolution are typically explored to assist clients to achieve their relationship goals.
We have supported clients with a range of disabilities with loss of function or degenerative conditions. Counselling is utilised to assist clients with feelings of loss, sadness, isolation, grief, or complex emotions that they may be experiencing. Exploration of a client’s unique strengths supports alternate strategies and options to facilitate emotional wellbeing.
Counselling supports clients with issues such as assertiveness, boundary setting, communication styles, conflict resolution and anxiety around communication. Emotional regulation and recognition can assist clients to understand their own, and others feelings and identify social cues . Counselling assists participants in their day to day life whilst they communicate with people such as support workers, family members and relationships.
Counselling can help with learning by concentrating on individual strengths, learning styles and anxiety related to difficult tasks. During sessions clients can formulate strategies to facilitate homework completion and address tendencies such as perfectionism which may make learning difficult and stressful. Counsellors also work with teachers and schools to support clients with their educational, behavioral and social needs.
· Social interaction:
Counsellors aim to support clients to enhance their ability to socialise, make friends, gain employment and engage in recreational and leisure activities. Counselling is utilised to maximise community participation to foster social and economic equality for all clients.
Counsellors assist clients to “self-care” to provide awareness of personal needs, maximise mental wellbeing and foster resilience. Clients explore their activities of daily living needs, such as sleep, showering and hygiene to maximise independence in a dignified and safe environment. Counsellors and clients can explore feelings of vulnerability, which may be stem from the need for assistance.
Counselling assists with a variety of practical tasks such as exploring employment options, gaining and keeping employment, domestic self-management, paying bills, time management and catching public transport. Some examples of practical skills include, what to include on your resume, what to wear to work, conversation topics, conflict resolution between flat mates and exploration of SLES programs.
How can Parents benefit from Counselling at Whole Family Health?
Parenthood is one of the most rewarding, yet at times daunting and challenging experiences that we may face in our lives.
Having a child with a disability can create unique challenges and difficulties for our wonderful parents. Sometimes our parents themselves suffer from a disability, mental health issues, past trauma or illness. These factors may exacerbate or magnify need for support, therapy and assistance so that parents can be best equipped and supported to in turn support their children.
Parents can seek support through one-on-one counselling in a safe environment to discuss and process their individual needs. Engaging in therapy, will in turn assist their children. During therapy, parents can explore challenges that they are experiencing and problem solve to create outcomes such as: exploring feelings and personal insights, develop alternative ways to approach and think about problems, create an environment of self-care in order to regulate emotions and tolerate challenges.
During individual therapy, parents can explore individual strengths, supports and networks, to empower parents to create the best outcomes for their children and family.
It is important to note that studies have indicated that parents of children with a disability, experience significantly poorer physical and mental health problems than those of typically developing children (Gilson et al., 2018; Singer, 2006). Factors such as dealing with challenging behaviors, isolation, financial problems and day to day struggles can contribute to this prevalence. Therefore, our parents deserve additional support to ensure they are able to cope with daily challenges, maintain wellbeing and thrive.
At Whole Family Health, we have devised a six week program to assist parents in their challenging roles. Topics explored include:
The aim of our parenting program is to create a platform for parents to explore their unique relationship with their child and general family dynamics. Resources are utilised to create understanding of the developmental and emotional needs of children. Parents are supported in a nonjudgmental space, with the understanding of the paramount importance that you play in your family's life. We understand that the parenthood is an ongoing journey, with days that we feel we succeed and others that we feel downtrodden and defeated. Our ultimate aim is to support parents to support their children, drawing on their unique strengths and abilities.
As a registered NDIS provider, every therapist at Whole Family Health supports our clients in a holistic manner and passionately champions for the rights of people with a disability to be upheld and heard. We are committed to assist clients gain access to supports and funding that they are entitled to. Therapists assist parents and children to maintain the same opportunities and rights as every other family in the community.
During Counselling, parents can discuss issues that may be impairing the rights of their families to live a happy and equitable life. Counsellors at Whole Family Health are trained in all aspects of NDIS regulations and policies such as quality and safeguard frameworks and will work tirelessly to uphold the principles outlined in the Convention of the Rights of People with a disability (CRPD).