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Counselling Service

Bristol Early Years Counselling Service is a new service set up to support families in Bristol Children’s Centres across the City.  We aim to offer high quality confidential one to one psychological support for parents/carers who are likely to benefit from specialised support and are motivated to make changes in their current life situation.


Counselling is a ‘talking therapy’ which provides a regular space for parents to talk and be listened to when they feel ‘overwhelmed’ by life’s challenges and want to explore their feelings in a safe space.  Parents will be encouraged to find their own solutions and the counsellor will assist with this process but not give advice.


Sarah Appleton is an MBACP (Accred) integrative Counsellor combining a person-centred approach with cognitive behavioural tools.  Sarah offers short-term, confidential counselling support (six sessions including a review). She is able to offer this in a quiet space at the Children’s Centre or a room in a neutral environment off site.


Criteria for referral for Parents/Carers

  • Parents/Carers of children under 5 years need to be referred by a member of staff at their Children’s Centre or by their health visitor using the referral form supplied.
  • Parents need to be in agreement that they could benefit from support with their emotional well-being
  • Parents will be assessed as appropriate to access short-term counselling and willing to access appropriate specialist services following their review
  • Parents who are assessed as vulnerable, in greatest need and at risk of family breakdown will be prioritised


Counselling Support for Leaders

We understand that leadership is becoming increasingly stressful.

We offer an opportunity for a safe, confidential space for reflection to support you to rebuild resources when going through uncertainty and change.

Counselling can take place ‘offsite’ from your place of work.

The service offered to staff is strictly confidential and information shared in sessions will not be disclosed to other employees

Staff can email or telephone Sarah to complete a referral form to access support.

Sarah can offer six free sessions including a review



Advice and Information for Practitioners

If you become aware of practitioners who could benefit from counselling support, Sarah can be contacted for advice and information for appropriate agencies for them to be referred on to.



For more information or to make a referral contact Sarah Appleton, Counsellor based at Redcliffe Children’s Centre or email Sarah.appleton@bristol-schools.uk

(T) 0117 9030341

(M) 07957929852

Sarah works on Tuesdays 9am – 5pm all year round

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