Every year Cork Counselling Services run a number of community-based programmes and projects.
Positive Mental Health & Suicide Prevention Programme
This programme is sponsored by ESB Energy for Generations and The Ireland Funds 2017-2018
It has long been recognised that there is a tragically high rate of suicide amongst young people in Ireland. In response, Cork Counselling Services developed a Positive Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Programme with delivery aimed at at Transition Year students in postprimary schools. The programme was presented to students in a number of schools in Cork City and County since 2006 and has been met with widespread enthusiasm and approval.
The underlying philosophy of the programme is strengths-based, built on the belief that suicide can be a preventable tragedy, and that young people are resilient and can make healthy choices when offered positive coping options.
The programme has two strands:
- Educating students about the risk factors and warning signs associated with suicide (this allows discussion of mental health promotion).
- Emphasizing the importance of students developing resources for enhancing mental well-being.
The programme highlights the importance of awareness and knowledge, and comprised of material that reinforces facts, dispels myths, explores taboos and addresses stigma. Students learn how to explore their feelings and express their difficulties verbally. They are further resourced to actively seek help when needed. The programme is both didactic and interactive, making use of creativity, written and video material, role-plays and quizzes. The intention is to engage the students.
The programme is facilitated by counsellors from the Cork Counselling Services each of whom have experience of facilitating, in both clinical and training fields. As such the programme is clinically informed.
Transgender Support Programme
In the largest study of trans people in Ireland, researchers found that 78% of participants reported thinking about ending their lives and 40% of those reported attempting suicide at least once. Participants also reported common
experiences of stress (83%), depression (82%) and anxiety (73%). This report highlighted the need for trans support work which focuses on empowerment, self-esteem and confidence building.
As an inclusive community based organisation we are very well placed to provide bespoke packages of psycho education and support programmes. During 2015, we reported an increase in the number of clients attending with LGBT related issues, specifically transgender related issues. In response to this, we have developed a Trans Support Programme which will allow us to work closely with members of the Trans community.
Many trans individuals have been misunderstood, and experienced isolation, discrimination and abuse due to their internal gender struggle. They look for peace in a complex and often painful experience. Many trans individuals experience hopelessness, uncertainty and feel a sense of prolonged powerlessness. Our belief is that support work should have a central aim of empowerment. The Counselling Centre has developed a Trans Support Programme which can act as a bridge in reconnecting trans individuals with the community and empower them to access the resources that they need. The programme will create a safe space to discuss the requirements, pitfalls, challenges, questions and decisions trans individuals are likely to face in a transition process. They can discuss how they feel this will affect their spouse, parents, children and other family members in dealing with the changes that are occurring or that will occur. The impact of this in the workplace and other professional issues will also be valuable focus points.
Cork Counselling Services is delighted to announce that the Community Foundation for Ireland has awarded us €7,500 to train and upskill pre accredited and accredited counsellors in the provision of counselling and psychotherapy to those who identify as trans individuals. Betty Quinlan and Joseph Enright recently attended a Learning Network Event and collaborated with fellow grantees with a view of improving ongoing practices and effectiveness.
Separation and divorce are significant life transitions that create numerous, complex changes in the lives of those affected. Parents can find it difficult to cope with their changing circumstances while at the same time supporting the needs of their children. In response, Cork Counselling Services developed and runs a Parenting Programme aimed at supporting parents through the changes that they are experiencing in their personal lives.
During the course parents will have the opportunity to:
- share their experience, knowledge and skills
- find support within the group
- gain insight and information relevant to their own situation
- develop a heightened awareness of what children go through at times of change
- access ideas and information on how to best help and support themselves and their children
- explore their own feelings and roles as parents
- hear from guest speakers who will speak on issues relating to separation and divorce
If you are interested in sponsoring this programme please contact us.