I’m currently training to become a counsellor. I’m in year 2 of 4 years of training and my mind is wandering to the future and I’m thinking about securing work. I just wanted to hear from any counsellors out there just to get an idea of the employment situation? Do you work for a charity / agency or are you in private practice? What’s your salary, if you don’t mind me asking!
The training is very expensive and I suppose I’m worrying a bit, although I’m getting so much personal fulfilment from it. Thank you.
Paid jobs are like gold dust, private practice is an option but you really need to work in building your business. Check the BACP jobs boards and see what is in your area, look on Guardian Jobs etc and see. There are too many volunteers to justify paid jobs.
I'm in private practice in the evenings. I still work full time in my primary job. I qualified in 2010 and have just recouped the costs of my training. Paid jobs are pretty thin on the ground - I actually secured one and did it for a while but didn't enjoy it.
I didn't enjoy the environment really. Also I expected to work two full days but the hours were split mostly into half days which was just too difficult. I went back full time to my original job after three months although the counselling project didn't want me to leave. I'm fine fitting in private practice round the main job.
Sorry to jump on your thread but I’m thinking of starting a counselling course next year, which course are you doing? I want to do the training so I can become a school counsellor (was a teacher before stopping to have my children) so you know if those jobs are also like gold dust? Thank you!
Sadly I believe regular paid counselling work is rare across all areas. So many volunteer to keep up their skills, so the justification for paying counsellors is reduced, etc etc. Here in Scotland, the posts that I see most of (and even then there aren't masses of them) are in higher education/student counsellors. I am very (very, very) lucky to have three days permanent within the NHS. I earn c£18k for my 3 days. Most of the counsellors I know rely predominantly on private work - but have well-established practices. I used to combine my NHS work with private work but don't have enough time now that my children are getting a little older, but aren't yet both in the school sysyem. Plus the extra childcare cost to enable unreliable private work is hard to justify at the moment! Not sure if that is at all helpful OP 🤔
I would say, admirable vocation, but do the training (Look for BACP Accredited courses - They are the biggest and recognised by volunteers) But it is something you will do in addition to a full or part time regular paid job. Unless you are in the right place at the right time.