Kitchener-Waterloo

Guelph-Wellington counselling clinic expands services in Fergus

The executive director of Family Counselling and Support Services Guelph-Wellington hopes a satellite office in Fergus will reduce wait times for counselling and other mental health services.

Existing clinic in Mount Forest is only open one day a week, according to Joanne Young Evans

New satellite clinic will reduce wait times for mental health services according to executive director Joanne Young Evans. (www.ihcproviders.com)

The executive director of Family Counselling and Support Services Guelph-Wellington hopes a satellite office in Fergus will reduce wait times for counselling and other mental health services.

Joanne Young Evans said the agency runs a clinic in Mount Forest one day a week, and residents of Wellington County have to wait four to six weeks to get in.

"There's a lot of people who would like assistance and who need assistance and, unfortunately, it's a very busy clinic and we can only get one day a week there," Young Evans said.

Increased service

In Fergus, the agency will be able to operate three or four days a week, plus some night shifts. 

We want to catch them in that moment when they realize that they want some help and they can walk right in and speak to a counsellor right away.- Joanne Young Evans

Young Evans said the new clinic will offer individual, couple and family counselling; workshops on topics like anger and mood management; and, in April, a walk-in counselling clinic.

"Walk-in is critical, because people don't often think ahead," she said. "They think, right away, 'You know, I need to see someone. I've made the decision. So, I need to go."

"We want to catch them in that moment when they realize that they want some help and they can walk right in and speak to a counsellor right away."

The clinic will also offer services that are geared towards men, children and teenagers – groups that Young Evans said are underserved in the county.

The satellite office will open on Sept. 1, 2016, and will be located in the Centre Wellington Chamber of Commerce building on Tower Street.

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