Southampton social care workers being offered free counselling in response to pandemic

Southampton social care workers being offered free counselling in response to pandemic

Southampton’s frontline care workers are being offered free counselling support by a charity this winter to help them through the ongoing pandemic especially with the emergence of Omicron.

 Options Wellbeing Trust, part of the not-for-profit enterprise Social Care in Action (SCiA), wishes to help those whose mental health and wellbeing has been adversely affected by the ongoing Covid situation.

 Wendy Lee, Head of Health and Wellbeing (pictured top) at the charity based on Dukes Road, explains: “Social care workers, those who work in care homes or in the community in customers’ homes, have been at the forefront of the response to this on-going situation.

 “They have been working tirelessly, going over and above, to support the vulnerable people who they care for, for nearly 19 months now. They’ve struggled through the stresses and strains associated with lockdowns and have also had the ongoing worries about their customers’ health, keeping them safe and protecting the NHS from any potential overloads.

 “Omicron and all that comes with it may now be overloading them. We’re here to help, even if they just need someone to talk to confidentially.

 “Working closely with residents in Southampton, we’ve seen first-hand how the pandemic has had a profound negative impact on many people’s mental health and wellbeing, particularly those who have witnessed the effects of Coronavirus within their close circle.

 “So, we’ve re-launched our free service in partnership with Southampton City Council. We unveiled it originally in 2021 and had thought by now that we’d have been further on with regards the pandemic. But with the arrival of Omicron, we’ve decided to re-boot the scheme and have allocated some funds to continue it. We’ve already had wonderful feedback from people we’re currently supporting and we’re seeing a positive impact on people’s lives as a direct result of our service.”

 Options Wellbeing Trust is offering its support for those social care workers or teams that feel they would benefit from the opportunity of talking in confidence with a counsellor.

Counselling sessions are offered on a one-on-one basis or in small groups, online or by telephone. The service, available exclusively to social care workers, includes six sessions, free of charge and two follow up sessions. These are to check in and to see how people are doing and if they need more support.

 For a confidential, informal initial chat, email the Options Wellbeing Trust team via or call on 023 8063 0219.

 For further details, visit

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