Sue Lambert Trust is the main charity in Norfolk to provide specialist therapeutic services to people who have experienced sexual violence and sexual abuse. Our services are delivered free of charge with therapy sessions led by a group of professionally qualified volunteer counsellors. We spoke to the EDP about their important, vital work.

The EDP, Norfolk's daily newspaper, kindly ran a story about our work, focusing on the incredible commitment of our volunteer counsellors. Read on to find out more about our counsellors and why they choose to support our work.

Sue Lambert Trust is the main charity in Norfolk offering specialist counselling support to people who have experienced sexual violence. And we are very lucky to have a passionate and hard-working team of paid staff and volunteer trained counsellors.

Clive Evans, chief executive of Sue Lambert Trust explains; “We support people who are highly vulnerable and who trust us to help them recover and rebuild their lives. And we rely on the support of our counsellors to do this.

“Our counsellors are kind and caring people who help others explore their feelings and emotions related to their past experiences. Through listening non-judgementally and offering a safe space to talk about their traumas and express their feelings and anxieties, counsellors help clients to make sense of their experiences and make changes in their lives.”

 

Sue Lambert Trust volunteer counsellors in Norfolk

Sue Lambert Trust thanks its team of volunteer counsellors

Bob Parker, a qualified counsellor, has volunteered with us since June 2018

Previously a volunteer for the Samaritans, he noticed that many callers, mostly, but not exclusively females, included sexual and violent trauma as at least part of the reason for their call.  At Sue Lambert Trust, Bob sees around eight clients each week.

“Despite its stresses the work is immensely rewarding especially when clients tell you that they feel heard and can start to live without their traumatic experience affecting them so much anymore.

“Helping someone to move out of the horrible shadow on their life and find their way to deal with what has happened is something which counselling can offer – as the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy say: “Counselling changes lives.”

Our counsellors help clients to make sense of their experiences and make changes in their lives

Asha retrained as a counsellor after a career in HR

“Volunteering with Sue Lambert Trust allows me to put my skills into practice and develop my expertise,” she explains. “I’ve never just wanted to be an academic, I want to do a practical job.

“Watching the magic happen in the room because the clients are doing the work is very special; you’re just facilitating their process of self-healing, not acting as any sort of expert.  The work can be really hard, but it can be exhilarating when you see a client start to make progress; when a person says they no longer feel so alone.”

“In April 2019 we received just over 50 referrals from people needing our help.  In April 2021 – after the second spring lockdown – we had more than 100,” says Clive Evans. “We never take our volunteer counsellors for granted because we wouldn’t exist without them. Being able to pay them, even just a fraction of what they would earn in private practice, means we can build our pool of therapists and help even more people.”

Do you know someone who could volunteer for us?

Sue Lambert Trust is always keen to hear from counsellors who would like to offer their time whilst expanding their skills and knowledge. The charity provides counsellors with one-to-one and group supervision plus regular professional training, free of charge.

We have offices in Norwich and Great Yarmouth.

To find out more, please email info@suelamberttrust.org

Read this article in full online with the EDP – Sue Lambert Trust supporting abuse victims | Eastern Daily Press (edp24.co.uk)