“When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.” ― Audre Lorde
Specialist Counselling service at SARSVL is confidential, free and independent from the police or statutory bodies. The counselling service offers a holistic approach to recovery and provides a variety of counselling options and therapeutic services in a women-only safe space, to women over the age of 18 who have experienced any form of sexual violence, at any time in their lives.
The counselling service is suitable for you if you are looking for an opportunity to explore your past experiences and would like to move forward positively with your life. Your counsellor will offer a safe and confidential space for you to explore and to talk about your thoughts, feelings, body sensations and the impact the sexual violence has on your life.
The counselling service at SARSVL is a member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy BACP and Rape Crises England and Wales RCEW and adheres to their ethical framework and guidelines.
The counselling service includes paid, voluntary and trainee Counsellors. All the Counsellors at SARSVL work from the women-centred perspective, are qualified or about to be qualified, receive and are encouraged to attend specialist training in working with the survivors of sexual violence and attend regular professional clinical supervision. The counselling service works from the empowerment perspective, encourages self-determination, is trauma informed, challenges the myths of sexual violence and focusses on the individual needs of women.
The counselling service at SARSVL accepts self-referrals and referrals from agencies, written with the woman’s consent.
Sometimes due to high demand, we have to close our waiting lists for a specific strand of counselling. Check the individual strand below to see which counselling strand is currently accepting referrals and how to refer.
Due to the high demand for counselling sometimes the waiting time can be long. While waiting to access Counselling please feel free to contact SARSVL Helpline for emotional support, visit Women’s Lives Leeds or Leeds Mind for other services available or contact your GP to discuss other support.
The service offers different strands of therapeutic support.
You can start with any service, depending on your preference. If you are not sure, please contact our counselling service to discuss your preference. You can also discuss your preference during the assessment.
What happens next?
When we receive your referral we will contact you to acknowledge the referral and will let you know if you have been placed on the waiting list for an assessment. When we contact you, we may have to ask you some additional questions to help us understand if this is the best service for you.
When a counselling space becomes available we will contact you for an assessment. If you miss your assessment session twice, no further appointments will be offered. If this happens, you are welcome to refer yourself again after one year.
There is often a long waiting time before we will be able to offer you an assessment session, if you need support while you are waiting for an assessment please contact the SARSVL Helpline for emotional support, visit Women’s Lives Leeds or Leeds Mind for other services available or contact your GP to discuss other support.
For women who have completed Counselling or who are still attending Counselling we offer:
For more information or to email a referral form please contact email@example.com
To speak to someone regarding our counselling service please call 0113 200 2936