I felt drawn to apply for my placement at Willow Wood because I had previously been involved in some fundraising activities and so appreciated how valued its service is by the people of Tameside & Glossop. I have also had cancer and one of my motivations to train as a Counsellor, was my appreciation of how important it is for people with life limiting illnesses or those around them, to be able to access talking therapy, in a safe, confidential space where you are not judged.
I was delighted when I was offered my placement at Willow Wood and pleased it presented a more diverse range of clients to work with, than anticipated. I worked with people who were bereaved or anticipating a loss, some undergoing cancer treatment, some recovering and others terminally ill and receiving palliative care and those around them. It was a wonderful experience to work with a wide variety of challenges that clients brought to counselling, giving me experience in areas beyond my hopes.
I was welcomed immediately by all at Willow Wood and from the moment I started, I felt I was part of a holistic service which really suited me. Everyone was friendly and helpful and I was also invited to an afternoon tea as a thank-you to volunteers and a lovely acknowledgment of the contribution I and so many other people have made to the service.
During my counselling placement, I learnt new skills, responsible case management, safeguarding and good practice. My weekly clinical supervision session with the Family Support Manager, presented a valuable opportunity to reflect on client work and consider different perspectives, which helped build my confidence and grow as a practitioner.
Overall, I believe I could not have had a better start in my counselling career, ranging from the placement setting, client work and support and guidance. The learning I have gained from the variety of clients and my weekly clinical supervision was the best foundation I could have had as a Counsellor. I am really proud of what I achieved in my placement with Willow Wood and would not hesitate to recommend it.