A counsellor is celebrating after securing funding for a mobile counselling service that he hopes will improve access to therapy for disadvantaged communities.
Our member John Ng will see clients in the living area of his luxury motorhome while it’s parked in car parks on estates in Kingston, London.
He’s secured funding from the Paul Hamlyn Foundation which will help pay for the project’s running costs during a two-month pilot.
Clients will be able to have regular free appointments or visit drop-in sessions in his motorhome.
John said: “I know that not everyone can afford to see a private therapist, and the demand for NHS services is so high there can be very long waits. I wondered how I could help people; what could I do?
“Using this RV means I can get out onto the estates and get out to people who might not travel to see a therapist otherwise.
Access to counselling
“It feels like this is how it can be done. Everyone should have access to counselling. I think it’s really important to get out there, into the community and do something to help.
“It feels really positive to give something back and be able to do this.”
John contacted BACP and his insurance company to talk through his plans before going ahead with them.
He has arranged to use several car parks in Kingston to run regular sessions with clients.
And he’s also planning drop-in sessions.
He’s working with community organisations in the area who are signposting clients to him.
He adds: “I see clients in the living area of the RV. It’s a private space.
“It looks a bit like an office. In many ways, it’s no different to private practitioners who are working alone.
“I’ve gone through all the checks to make sure this is ok – and was pleased to get the all clear.
“It’s been fantastic to get this funding. That means I know I can do this for a couple of months. At the moment, it’s an experiment. But I want to turn it into a sustainable business model. I want to expand it and keep it going.”
As well as working for the mobile counselling service for three days a week, he also works for Anchor Counselling, based in Hounslow, and has his own private practice in East Moseley.