In partnership with a wide range of stakeholders we aim to increase the numbers of older people accessing therapy and the numbers of counselling practitioners working with older clients. The views, experiences and participation of members is critical to the development and implementation of our older people strategy. The expert reference group (ERG) will provide the mechanism for engagement and dialogue with members interested in supporting this work.

Our members’ knowledge and learning in counselling older people will be incorporated into the preparation and delivery of a range of strategic activities across the four nations of the UK that will call for greater awareness of the mental health needs of older people, and promote the difference that counselling makes to those in need. We’re looking for members with experience in working with adults aged 50 years upwards and who are living with issues relating to:

  • bereavement
  • depression
  • dementia
  • long term conditions
  • workplace
  • care homes
  • prisons
  • end of life
  • BAME communities
  • drugs and alcohol
  • relationship breakdown and divorce
  • retirement
  • loneliness and social isolation

General activities

You'll be invited to:

  • take part in an annual roundtable meeting
  • contribute your views, opinions and reflections on your work with older adults that can be shared within BACP and used to illustrate to external stakeholders that counselling changes lives
  • engage in campaign activity
  • keep us up to date with any initiatives or innovations in your area that relate to work with older people
  • assist in the shaping and overseeing of the older people research strategy
  • have your experience included in case studies for use online and in the media
  • sign-up to receive a regular e-mail update on the older people strategy

Working with us

You must complete our:

  • Declarations of interest form, and manage any conflicts of interest as they arise in accordance with our policy and procedures
  • Volunteer agreement form, which sets out the joint commitment to working with us. This is binding in honour only.

Time commitment

The ERG roundtable meeting will be held annually and members of the group will be invited to shape the agenda. We'll also invite you to attend and participate in other events and activities. We'll aim to give you a minimum of four weeks’ notice for all events and requests whenever possible.

Skills and abilities

  • confident in ability to communicate effectively and respectfully in a group setting
  • attention to detail
  • ability to give detailed, constructive and where necessary critical feedback, on both the content and the format of the resources
  • adherence to the seven Nolan principles of public office: selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership


There is no remuneration for this role, however, reasonable expenses incurred in carrying out the role will be reimbursed in line with our volunteers expenses policy.

To apply

For more information or to apply for this role, please send your cv and an application letter stating your relevant skills, knowledge and experience to