As with last month’s Manchester attack, many members have been contacting us to offer their counselling services after last weekend’s atrocities in London.
Our deepest sympathies and thoughts go out to all those who witnessed the attack, were injured, or lost loved ones.
We are sure that many members would like to assist in any way possible after traumatic events such as this. Many members, we know, already volunteer their time to charities.
As you may have read before, in our Manchester statement, we have been trying to find the best route for members wishing to help, and spoke to a number of organisations involved in providing support after the attack.
Cruse Bereavement Care (a BACP organisational member) has kindly provided us with the following (updated) advice:
To all BACP members
Thank you for all for the offers of support for the people who have been affected by the recent terrorist atrocities in Manchester and London.
Cruse Bereavement Care is part of Major Incident Response Teams that are co-ordinated by the Red Cross, who, where and when appropriate call on Cruse, amongst other agencies, to provide some immediate local support to bereaved people.
As trained counsellors, you will be aware that aftercare for anyone affected is essential in the short, medium and long term following attacks such as these, so if you receive enquiries from people who have been directly affected or were a bystander who may have witnessed the traumatic event, and seen people injured or people die this may trigger a painful response as a result of past trauma and perhaps similar experiences.
If the support needs are outside of your particular skill set, please direct people to the most appropriate organisation, including Cruse to ensure the individuals support needs are met.
Colin Murray Parkes has advised us that many bereaved people may not make immediate contact with us, as there is often shock felt at the initial point of having been bereaved in such a traumatic way – as a response to the attack. People may find that they can contact us after the first month or so, once other emotions and thoughts start to emerge.
We therefore wanted to thank you in advance, as we are sure you will be supporting those who come to you having been affected by the event. These recent tragedies are very difficult to deal with however it does give us the opportunity to pull together as a counselling community to support people who need our help at these difficult times.
The Cruse Helpline 0808 808 1677 is available to anyone affected by the recent attacks.
Cruse welcomes new volunteers, so if you would like to volunteer for Cruse and be trained to respond to major incidents, please contact us via the Cruse website volunteer pages.