Counselling Trainee Placements and Volunteer Counselling

The Changes counselling service wouldn’t be possible without the contribution made by our fabulous volunteer counsellors and trainee counsellors.

We are a small, thriving service of just over 10 counsellors with limited opportunities for trainee and qualified volunteer counsellors to join our team, offering short-term (up to 8 sessions) generic counselling to over 16s in the East Lothian community.  We offer a hybrid model, with options of face-to-face, telephone or video counselling. Counsellors in the team are trained/training in a variety of relational, non-directive approaches such as person-centred, psychodynamic and transactional analysis (please note that individual CBT is not offered by Changes).

Our counsellors consistently comment on how satisfying it is to work in such a vibrant agency, offering a real breadth and depth of therapeutic, health and wellbeing opportunities for clients.

Our counsellors see a minimum of 3 clients per week and work in a supportive team, with regular individual support from the Therapy Coordinator, mentoring for trainees and occasional therapy team gatherings. Volunteer counsellors who are qualified are offered a contribution towards clinical supervision costs. All counsellors are required to be cleared under the PVG Scheme Membership Disclosure (Working with Protected Adults) and be members of COSCA or the BACP.

Read about Shweta’s and Camille’s experience as trainee counsellors at Changes during their studies at the University of Edinburgh.

Counselling Placement

Second Year Counselling Placement Opportunity at Changes East Lothian

Changes East Lothian operates a small, vibrant, generic counselling service for adults in East Lothian.  We are delighted to be offering a second placement opportunity for trainee counsellors at our agency premises in Musselburgh.

Please note, this placement is not suitable for CBT trainee counsellors.

Trainees will work with a caseload of 3 clients with the following shifts available:

What you need to know

We offer short-term generic counselling of up to 8 sessions to adults 16 and over, in East Lothian. Our hybrid approach allows clients to choose between face-to-face, video or telephone counselling.

You will work in a supportive team, with regular individual placement support from the Therapy Manager, mentoring from a staff counsellor working the same shift, a great administration team and invitation to occasional therapy team gatherings.

We provide free training which you can book onto, held at regular intervals throughout the year, including but not limited to Crisis Handling training (CHAT) and Assisted Suicide Intervention Skills training (ASIST).

Suitability for the placement

Changes placements are only available for counsellors on recognised counselling diploma courses training in relational, non-directive counselling approaches such as person-centred and psychodynamic therapy and we do not offer individual Cognitive Behaviour Therapy.

Changes placements are not suitable as first placements and we only consider applications from diploma trainees who have already completed 50 hours of client work (excluding triad work with peers) and who work in a trauma-informed way, or the equivalent work experience.

All trainee counsellors are required to be cleared under the PVG Scheme Membership Disclosure (Working with Protected Adults).

You will be a student member of COSCA or BACP, having clinical supervision in accordance with this guidance (clinical supervision costs are met by the trainee therapist).

Please read the full role description to find out more.

Application notes

To apply please submit a CV and covering letter explaining what you would bring to the role and return to or post to Changes, 108 Market Street, Musselburgh, EH21 6QA.

Please note, we reserve the right to close applications early if a high volume has been received.

Second Counselling Placement Full Role Description

Qualified Volunteer Counsellors

We welcome applications from more experienced counsellors qualified to diploma level who may be working towards accreditation.

Please send a copy of your full CV, and a short statement outlining why you would like to volunteer with us to the Therapy Coordinator Rebecca:  Please also include the days and times you would be available to see clients, and the name of two referees who are familiar with your counselling work (e.g. supervisor, tutor).

Contact us 0131 653 3977 or