My name is Andrew and have been working as a counsellor since 2018. My qualifications include an MSc in Pluralistic Counselling (Distinction pass) from Abertay University,
Diploma in Person-Centred counselling from New College Lanarkshire (Grade A); and an Emotion Focused Therapy (level 1) Certificate from the University of Strathclyde. Although working face-to-face with many clients, I am also certified to work safely and ethically in online and telephone settings, having completed NCS and ACTO-accredited training.
My working career spans 40 years, latterly managing a befriending project in the Bishopbriggs area of East Dunbartonshire. This service seeks to provide telephone, group and one-to-one support to lonely and socially isolated persons; mostly those aged over 80. Although still involved with this service, I am employed as an Alcohol Counsellor with Glasgow Council on Alcohol; volunteer as a counsellor with CRUSE Bereavement (Scotland); and work in private practice.
But, although a qualified counsellor/ psychotherapist, there have been occasions in my own life when personal struggles and problems of living seemed impossible to bear. However, I discovered the benefits of seeking and engaging in professional counselling support. But I know how important it is to find the right therapist as the working relationship which develops between client and counsellor is known to be the main vehicle through which positive change can happen. My relationship style is flexible, meeting the needs of clients who may need different things at different points in time. For example, it could be one of an empathic listener, a coach, a companion, someone who provides insight or one which a client suggested "nurturing parent".
As someone who has encountered discrimination in their lifetime, I am particularly sensitive about issues of equality and diversity. Indeed, I have worked with a range of clients from different socio-economic and cultural groups; including those from the Deaf and LGBTQI+ communities.
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