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Because we rely almost entirely on volunteers,  we make every effort to support the people who work for us with experience,  one to one support, and training opportunities. 


If you are qualified or in training to be a counsellor or psychological therapist and would like to volunteer as a therapist then please contact us.

  • You must be studying to at least Level 4 in an appropriate qualification,

  • authorized to practice by your course provider/tutor. 


For therapeutic professionals we offer a wide range of training to help with your specialist skills. 

If you are not a therapist and would like to volunteer your skills we are always in need of more help with:

  • events,

  • marketing,

  • research,

  • IT and more, so  please get in touch! 


Qualified counsellors can apply at any time of year,  but to manage the numbers of trainees we take on we only take counselling trainees twice a year. 

We are inundated with requests, so please get in early. We have limited placements to offer because we want to give students as much support as possible while they are with us, and we often have a progression pathway wherein students begin to do paid work with us through our NC route one they qualify. 

To begin counselling in April:  

  • You can send your application between 1st January - 28th February. 

  • Interviews are in March each year

  • Placements are subject to a clear, enhanced DBS 

To begin counselling in September:  

  • You can send your application between 1st June - 31st July. 

  • Interviews are in August each year 

  • Placements are subject to a clear, enhanced DBS 

You can download the application here and email it to us at 

All placements may be withdrawn at any time if your conduct does not fulfil our expectations of a counselling professional. 


Naturally at Open Minds the client is our priority, but in order to put the client first, we  do everything we can to make sure that you are the best practitioner possible;  including training,  support,  internal supervision,  case-load management and administrative support,  a library resource and help talking through assignments or theoretical and philosophical discussions about therapy. 

The joy of Open Minds is that we have so many volunteer counsellors,  all with their own unique style and ways of working,  and with different varieties of experience. 

This means we can learn from one another and get new ideas for things which might work for our own practice. 

Each counsellor is assigned a qualified counsellor to be their an internal supervisor. This employee is known as your Practitioner Support Team Leader (PSTL) and is present at the same time you volunteer. You will continue to need an external supervisor and will be required to evidence that you attend external supervision a minimum of once a month.


Your PSTL will be available in the office and can be asked questions as and when needed, and formal one to one internal supervision can also be booked if required. Your PSTL is responsible for supporting you with our systems, helping you understand the purposes of and ways in which we work. For example, using our case-note templates and how to write appropriate notes. Your PSTL writes your placement report and any references on your behalf. 

Attendance of small group internal supervision and in-house training to ensure your skills to support clients are of the highest standard. Such training and support is compulsory.


Non-attendance at 2 supervision sessions or training sessions in a row will lead to a placement review and possible withdrawal of your placement. 

You can volunteer at Open Minds for as long as you enjoy working with us. Most of our counsellors stay on with us once they are qualified, but you are under no pressure to do so. If you do continue to volunteer after you are qualified we will make every effort to support you with finding work as a counsellor, including private practice or job roles suited to you. 

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