Multi-year funding awarded to YMCA Bournemouth’s counselling service

YMCA Bournemouth has been awarded a three-year grant totalling £24,000 from Benefact Trust.

The grant will facilitate the continued expansion of the charity’s BACP accredited Counselling Service, helping to support the local community’s well-being. The project, demand for which has increased year-on-year, will enable YMCA Bournemouth to increase the number of marginalised individuals with mental health concerns they can support, focusing on those who cannot access support elsewhere.

The YMCA Bournemouth counselling service offers low cost affordable one to one counselling to the residents of Bournemouth and the surrounding areas. Counselling is provided with their trained counsellors and can be accessed at three locations in Bournemouth​:​ Winton and Southbourne; there is also an opportunity to access this service remotely. YMCA Bournemouth is an organisational member of the B.A.C.P (British Association of Counsellors & Psychotherapists) and follow their Ethical Framework.

The YMCA Bournemouth ‘Full Circle’ counselling service began in the summer of 2015 and has been operating in-house for the last 9 years.

Mark Inkpen, Chief Operation Officer at YMCA Bournemouth comments; “Achieving a multi-year award from Benefact Trust significantly helps us as a charity as it gives us the space to strategize and plan, ensuring the continued growth of this in-demand service. This funding will allow us to provide counselling to the most vulnerable people using our services free of charge and significantly subsidised for those with mental health concerns in our local communities. The grant supports core costs, enabling us to improve access to health and wellbeing services to improve quality of life and well-being.”

Benefact Trust is one of the UK’s largest grant-making charities and awarded more than £22.8 million to churches, charities and communities in 2022. Its funds come from its ownership of the Benefact Group.

Paul Playford, Senior Grants and Operations Officer for Benefact Trust, said: “YMCA Bournemouth’s Counselling Service is providing critical support for people struggling in Bournemouth and the surrounding areas, as mental health services become increasingly stretched and the demand increases. We’re privileged to support the expansion of this service, which is helping vulnerable and marginalised people at a time when they need it the most.”

The YMCA Bournemouth offers one to one counselling. That means that a single person will meet with a single counsellor and work together.

They currently offer counselling to Children (11+), Young people, and Adults. This is a weekly face to face, online video, or telephone appointment. Some of the therapies that they offer are:
Person Centred, Integrative, Cognitive Behavioural therapy and Transactional Analysis (dependent on availability).

All their clients are given a clinical assessment prior to entering counselling, to assess their presenting concerns and to ensure that they can offer the right counselling provision for their needs, before being placed with a suitable counsellor.

Anyone wanting to access the service can self-refer.

You can find out more about the YMCA and its Counselling service here or by contacting them via email

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