Mum Retrains to become Counsellor to help Vulnerable

By Catherine Smyth Media

AFTER more than 20 years helping vulnerable people, mother-of-two Jan Joshi has taken the plunge and retrained as a counsellor and psychotherapist.

Working for herself under the company name Simply Therapy, she is soon to begin working with a number of local not-for-profit agencies in East Lancashire, including the highly innovative Green Dreams Project .

Jan, 47, of Reedsholme, Rawtenstall, said: “I realised that when a client was referred to the NHS counselling service it could take up to six months before they got treatment and sometimes after just a few sessions the can of worms had opened but the counselling ceased.”

The agreement with Green Dreams is being finalised and once in place the community interest company will be able to offer clients the chance to access Jan’s therapy at a reduced rate as an alternative to waiting for free NHS counselling.

Business manager of Green Dreams Stephanie Driver said: “We are setting up a formal partnership so we can refer clients into Jan’s practice if it is appropriate for the individual.

“We do realise there can be very long waiting lists for NHS counselling and there are other options open to clients in some circumstances.”

Green Dreams helps people move closer to work or training and being involved in their communities. It helps any adults who feel isolated.

Jan said: “Over the 23 years I worked in local authorities, I have assisted many different vulnerable people with a variety of issues from drugs, alcohol and transgender, to prostitution, teenage pregnancy and the homeless.

“I would work with people to enable them to try to change their own lives by getting them to first accept their issues and then we would work together to find a solution. That is what I now do as a counsellor.

“If people can accept and take ownership of what they want, I can help provide the tools so they can achieve their goals and aspirations.”

She decided to work for herself two years ago and retrained to deliver a range of therapies from counselling, cognitive behaviour therapy, hypnotherapy and neuro-linguistic programming.

Jan said: “One of my clients is a compulsive liar and has been to therapists for years. In one session I was able to find the reason for her behaviour, something that others had not realised and now she is on the road to recovery.

“Once a client has recovered I give them a lifeline and allow them to keep in contact with me by text but I will not continue asking them to come to see me for sessions. Why should they pay me when they do not need to?

“I am not after making money, I want to help people improve their mental health and wellbeing for themselves and then all their family members benefit.

“When I get referrals from a GP, Green Dreams, Carers Link and Carers Trust, I only charge £25 a session because what is important is that help is affordable.”

Jan is married to Anil, a diabetes manager with NHS East Lancashire, and they have two children Shivani, 18, who is at university training to be a pharmacist and Kashev who is completing his A-levels at Bacup and Rawtenstall Grammar School.

She will also be working with Sarah Sweeney, of Sweeney Therapies in Rawtenstall, to offer ultrasonic treatments for removal of fine lines and weight loss as concerns over body image can seriously inhibit a person’s wellbeing.

For more information contact Jan on 07429 608873.

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