What exactly is counselling supervision and pastoral support?

Supervision is a mandatory professional requirement for all practising counsellors, with different professional bodies specifying the frequency and duration of this.   A supervisor is usually another more experienced counsellor who may hold specific qualifications in supervision.  The role of the supervisor is to help the counsellor to give an account of their work with their clients to ensure that it meets professional, ethical and moral requirements.    All of this is undertaken within the context of a formal confidential relationship and a professional working agreement.   It is also an environment in which the counsellor can reflect on their practice and receive educative, restorative and developmental support.

Formal supervision is not mandatory for those involved in pastoral and helping work but regular support is recommended to ensure safe and effective practice.  This type of work can be lonely and demanding, but the nature of it means that confidentiality and accountability are very important.  Pastoral support can be invaluable in assisting the worker to manage and address the difficult issues that arise from the work, enabling them to care for themselves and their 'clients'.

Are your supervisors qualified?

It is not mandatory for supervisors to hold a specific qualification in supervision but they will, ideally, have a number of years of counselling experience.  At Inspire we do require our supervisors to hold a supervision qualification, either to diploma level or equivalent.  This provides us with an assurance that they have met specific professional and practice related expectations and can offer their supervisees the best experience in supervision.  Our supervisors all receive regular supervision for their own supervision from an appropriately qualified professional.

What kind of supervision and support do you offer?

We are able to work with supervisees of different therapeutic modalities including Person Centred, Integrative and Cognitive Behavioural.  They each work with a specific model of supervision, such as Page and Wosket's 'Cyclical Model' or  Hawkins and Shoet's Seven Eyed Model'.  Our supervisors are all practising Christians and therefore able to incorporate that dimension into the supervision or support work should you wish to explore such matters.

You are a Christian organisation what does that mean?

Inspire is a Christian initiative and all our employees and volunteers are practising Christians.  We do not use a specifically Christian counselling, listening or supervisory approach and your supervisor will not discuss or raise issues of faith unless you wish to do so.  However, we are well placed to incorporate that dimension into the supervision should you choose to explore such matters.  

What if I don't like working with my supervisor or if I feel that the work isn't helpful?

If there are any issues that you are unhappy with we would suggest that you discuss these with your supervisor initially.  However, if you find this difficult we would invite you to speak with the Counseling Team Manager or Director if this feels more appropriate.  She will help you to explore other options and the best way forward for you.

How confidential is the supervision and support you offer?

All the information that you share with your supervisor and at the initial appointment will be treated as confidential.  Confidentiality will only be broken in certain circumstances and these exceptions will be discussed with you at your initial appointment. 

How often do I have to come for supervision or support?

Practising counsellors are required to attend monthly supervision and usually for 1.5 hours whereas pastoral support can be arranged on a regular or 'as and when' basis.  Whatever, we will be happy to explore your individual requirements and do our best to accommodate your preference and availability.

Inspire Counselling is registered in England & Wales under charity number 1068491 and company number 03510939. We use cookies to improve your experience using this website. To learn more, read our privacy policy.
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