Counselling

CatholicCare is a social services organisation offering professional and confidential counselling services to people of all ages and walks of life.

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Our aim is to encourage and strengthen individuals, couples and families to continue to develop and grow. You can expect your counsellor to be respectful, non-judgmental, genuine and confidential.

Sessions last about one hour. The number of sessions will depend on you, and will proceed at your pace. A referral is not required.

Counselling can help with many issues including:

  • Personal development issues, i.e. self-esteem or assertiveness
  • Grief and loss
  • Stress management
  • Conflict resolution
  • Separation or divorce
  • A stepfamily adjusting together
  • Communication
  • Parenting issues
  • Any other issue that is negatively affecting your life or relationships

How Much Does it Cost?

Your first one-hour session is provided free of charge. After the first session, fees per hour are charged according to level of income.

Our counselling services are currently funded by Australian and State Government Grants, Employee Assistance Program Contracts and Client Contributions. Your financial contribution to this service is important in enabling us to continue to provide quality counselling services.

Level of Income Guide

Income Fee
Less than $13,951 $25.00
$13,951 to $48,152 $45.00
Over previous threshold (full fee) $70.00

Note: it is the policy of CatholicCare that no client will be refused a service based on an inability to contribute a fee.

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Our Counsellors

  • Are all tertiary qualified
  • Are approved as Family and Child Counsellors by the Attorney General Department under the Family Law Act
  • Receive regular professional supervision and training
  • Hold Suitability Cards for Working with Children issued by the Commission for Children and Young People

In your first session your counsellor will speak with you about what has led you to seek counselling. At the end of the session, you will discuss with your counsellor whether further counselling would be helpful.

Sessions will concentrate on your concerns and how you may work to resolve them.

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Counsellor Profiles

  • Ali

    Mackay

    Ali joined CatholicCare in 2021 bringing over five years’ experience in the mental health space obtained within organisations such as Headspace and Step Up Step Down in Mackay.

    Ali has a number of qualifications including:
    – A Diploma in Mental Health Studies
    – A Master in Social Work
    – A Complex Trauma Certification
    – A Gottman level 1 relationship counselling course

    Alongside working with individuals and couples experiencing relationship difficulties, Ali can support people who have a mental health diagnosis and tailor specific counselling to their needs. His previous experience in the area of complex trauma enables him to work with people who have PTSD. Ali also has the expertise to work with the younger members of the community (ages 12-25).

    In his free time Ali likes watching and playing cricket, swimming and spending time with his friends and family. He also regularly volunteers within his local community.

  • Campbell

    Gladstone

    Campbell is an experienced counsellor with a Diploma in Counselling and extensive training as a Family Therapist.

    With more than 30 years experience in the field, Campbell has supported a diverse range of clients from communities throughout New South Wales and Queensland, including rural and remote areas.

    Campbell and his wife hail from the Sunshine Coast, where they lived for many years raising their four children. His own experience with raising a family, as well as observing others, has provided Campbell with unique insights into families, parenthood and relationships.

    With a solution-focused approach, Campbell enjoys seeing his clients freed from the tyranny of their past, develop their own strengths, take responsibility for their decisions and nurture themselves towards success.

  • Neil

    Bundaberg

    Neil is a registered psychologist and one of our most experienced clinicians with over 35 years in the human services and mental health fields and employed with CatholicCare since 1998.

    During this time he has worked with countless clients across all genders and age groups as well as with the indigenous community. This includes a decade of child protection work for the State Government.

    In his free time, Neil is a keen reader, gardener and plant collector and also has an active interest in archery.

  • Prabha

    Mackay

    Prabha joined CatholicCare in 2021 bringing with her over five years’ experience in the counselling space, having previously worked in the field of addiction recovery.

    She is a Level 2 Registered Counsellor with Australian Counselling Association and a Certified practitioner of Neuro Linguistic Programming, Yoga, Time Base Therapy and Neuro Relationship Therapy. She is also currently studying for her Masters in Counselling.

    Prabha’s passion is working in the field of mindfulness and life coaching. She has a special interest in couples counselling which is an essential skill for our Family Relationship Centre team.

    In her free time Prabha enjoys getting out into nature with her family, cooking and getting lost in a thought-provoking book.

Counselling ~ Frequently Asked Questions

What happens during my initial intake session?

Your intake will take 50 minutes. During the intake your counsellor will ask you a number of questions to assess your needs and will seek to establish what you would like support with and how our service can meet your needs.

Questions you will be asked include:

  • Why you sought therapy? – the counsellor needs to understand your issues.
  • The counsellor will also ask you questions about your life such as family, relationship or work situations as these play an important role in who you are.

It is important during your sessions that you are open, ask questions, be honest about your feelings and let your counsellor know if you have any concerns about the sessions. If you do not feel comfortable with your counsellor please let your counsellor know, or contact us to ask if there is another counsellor available – if is important that you feel you can speak openly with your counsellor.

Following your intake session your counsellor will then offer you a follow up session to start working on the issues you have identified. Sessions will be 50 minutes – these can be face to face, telephone or web based.

Appointments are usually made fortnightly so that you have time to work on strategies between sessions – your counsellor will negotiate frequency with you.

What type of counselling does CatholicCare provide?

CatholicCare can provide counselling on a one-on-one basis, or to couples, families and groups.

Our counsellors can assist with:

  • Relationship issues (communication, conflict, separation)
  • grief and loss
  • anxiety
  • domestic violence
  • children’s issues
  • depression
  • parenting issues
  • workplace issues (such as bullying, stress management and change management)

    Do you specialise in any specific areas?

    Staff are employed as generalist counsellor’s, however, a number of our staff undertake specialised training to work with:

    • trauma
    • addiction
    • sexual abuse

    If staff meet a client that they feel they do not have the skills or training to work with they will make an appropriate referral to someone who does.

    Can you claim anything on Medicare?

    In Bundaberg we provide Better Health Access Services. You will need a referral from a GP to access this service.  This service is currently only available in Bundaberg.

    Can children receive counselling?

    School aged children can be seen for appointments. The first appointment is usually with the parent only to assess needs.

    Do you need to have a referral to use your services?

    No, you do not need a referral to use our service.

    When doing relationship counselling, can you have individual appointments as well?

    Yes. During intake a counsellor will assess your needs and make recommendations about your counselling goals.

    What cost is involved?

    Your first intake appointment is free.

    All subsequent appointments do incur a cost. Please see our fee schedule to check our current rates.

    Clients will not be denied access to our counselling services because they do not have a financial capacity to pay the recommended rate.

    What if I am impacted by domestic violence?

    If you have experienced or are experiencing family and domestic violence, during intake you can discuss this with your counsellor and they will make appropriate referrals to support your needs.

    How do I make changes to an appointment?

    You will need to call 1300 523 985 and speak with one of our friendly staff to make any changes to your appointment. This includes cancellations or rescheduling.