A bit about counselling
organisations - a really quick and quite casually
put together guide. Sorry.
BACP British Association for Counselling and
Members have MBACP after their name either as
registrants, accredited members or senior accredited members.
Probably the largest in terms of members (Don't
shoot me, I haven't checked but I'll be surprised if it's not) and has been
around a long time. They accredit (and senior accredit) therapists,
supervisors, courses, agencies, and generally keep an eye on things, both
keeping their membership up to date and regularly reviewing all things
counselling including the ethical framework that we all aspire to (or at
least the BACP members do).
UKCP United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy
Members have UKCP after their name as they are
registered with the organisation perhaps as Psychotherapists or
Psychotherapeutic Counsellors... Er....
Representing also a large body of counsellors and
psychotherapists, having again a stringent route to registration (mirroring
'accreditation' in BACP terms) and supporting therapists and clients alike
with their activities and ethical framework.
UPCA Universities Psychotherapy and Counselling
Members have MUPCA after their name and achieve
different levels of proficiency (associate, student, clinical member,
Again with its own ideas and ethics, clearly based
in academia and perhaps interested in academic research, knowledge and the
future for therapy, it is an organisational member of the UKCP which means it
does the work of checking out the therapist's propriety to become a
registrant of the UKCP. There are several organisations like this so I
shall not mention them all. None of them in fact. They're listed
on the UKCP website though.
BABCP British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive
Members have MBABCP membership or accreditation.
They achieve accreditation by virtue of attending an accredited course
and/or by proving they have worked enough hours with different patient
presentations - enough to be experienced in treatment of various presentation
types. These are the guys you'll probably be referred to by your GP if
you have anxiety or depression. CBT can be really helpful up to a
certain degree of severity presenting in these clients (mild to moderate).
All these organisations perhaps have a similar
ethic, but the BABCP support therapists who choose to work with a different
model of therapy, Cognitive and Behavioural Therapy or CBT. See below
where I may manage to confuse you even more.
NCS National Counselling Society
Definitely the 'newer kids on the block', they
perhaps feel that many therapists are doing a great job based on their job
roles and years of experience and do not necessarily need to jump through so
many hoops to gain letters after their name or to become accredited, and
frankly they may have something there. Who knows?
They check out training etc., and accredit some
training courses and agencies.
AFT Association for Family Therapy
The AFT is the UK’s
leading organisation for family and systemic psychotherapists and
practitioners. Their members work with children, young people and adults,
couples, families and individuals and once again can be student through to
Accredited members depending upon training and experience.
There are many more but I have chosen
what might be considered to be the main ones (Whoops - how many people did that offend?!)
so if you're interested, get googling.
All of these professional organisations have the
clients' best interests at heart and have ethical codes and disciplinary
processes for when things go wrong. Have a look at their websites for
loads of counselling information and access to lists of therapists accredited
to them in your area.
Now if you want a bit more about types of therapy,
and what you might expect, you could check out the British Psychological
Society's website (www.bps.org) or the NICE website, or while you're here,
check out my previous page, 'so what kinds of therapy are there... what