Our new mentoring scheme will start in September 2022 and run for 11 months, ending in August 2023. We’re recruiting for both mentors and mentees until the end of July. The scheme will support our work to improve equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in the counselling professions.
Feedback from our members has shown training in our profession is lacking in EDI awareness and development. There are wide-ranging reasons for this, including:
- counselling and psychotherapy theories that have influenced training are predominately written by white, heterosexual males so are not relevant for all circumstances
- training is Eurocentric1
- many diverse religious beliefs and values are insufficiently integrated into the curriculum
- EDI is insufficiently embedded within the curriculum with a low uptake of minority therapists becoming trainers
Too often, responsibility for teaching and educating falls on those students who do have lived experience and are prepared, or expected, to share their experiences.
It’s important that we offer current trainees support to progress and succeed in the training environment. Through round table discussions, we've seen one common solution arise to address these issues: mentoring. Trainees have expressed a strong desire for mentoring support, which has led to the launch of this initiative.
What is mentoring?
Mentoring is a developmental dialogue and confidential partnership between two people based on understanding and trust. It’s a process of support and development, helping mentees tackle issues and achieve their goals. The partnership is driven primarily by the mentee, but it's a two-way learning relationship where the mentor can learn from the relationship as well.
How it works
To participate in this scheme as a mentee, you’ll need to be a BACP student member, currently taking a counselling or psychotherapy training course, and from a marginalised or racialised community (including Roma, Gypsy and traveller communities). Our aim is that the scheme will give you support to progress and succeed in the training environment from a mentor who understands, listens to your perspective and provides a safe environment to discuss issues that arise.
To participate in this scheme as a mentor, you’ll need to be a current BACP member and have completed a recognised counselling or psychotherapy practitioner qualification. You'll also have knowledge or lived experience of working with EDI in the counselling and psychotherapy professions and educational settings. Our aim is that the scheme will enable you to develop leadership skills, contribute to working towards a more balanced profession and work collaboratively to help in breaking down barriers to inclusion.
How to apply
You need to complete a registration form to apply. Closing date for applications is Friday 29 July 2022 and we’ll let you know if we’re able to match you by mid-September 2022. Please see the mentee or mentor sections for specific details.
1. Charura and Lago, 2021