Alcohol Counsellor Accreditation Success for Our Natasha!

We’re delighted to share the news Natasha Shearer one of Volunteer Counsellors is celebrating becoming accredited as an Alcohol Counsellor.

Natasha has kindly shared some details of her learning journey as a counsellor and her involvement with FASS.

“I started volunteering with Fife Alcohol Support Services (FASS) in April 2019 after completing a Degree in Psychology and an Advance Diploma in Psychotherapeutic Counselling. The first time I have heard about FASS was from a couple of my colleagues during my Advance Diploma training and hearing my colleagues talking about the positive impact this organisation is making not just for their clients and the wider Fife community, but their staff and volunteers made me want to be part of such a team and made me want to be part of such a cause. Looking back now, I can say that the initial expectations I had when joining FASS have been met and exceeded, to be part of a team where you feel supported, valued and respected; to feel part of something great and that you are making a difference.

From Day one, I have felt at home and valued as a member of the bigger FASS Family. This family’ support never faltered, not even in the face of the Covid pandemic during which our services had to be transferred on-line and with telephone. In the past 2 years with the help and support of FASS staff and my peers, I have managed to complete a Certificate in Advanced Alcohol Counselling Skills amongst a dozen of other CPD courses. However, most importantly this organisation has helped me to become a confident counsellor able to adapt and evolve, maintaining quality and professionalism in any circumstances.

I was always interested in what makes people ‘tick’ so to speak – what makes people act the way they do? I love asking lots of questions and listening to what people have to say. I am that annoying person who would like to know what is behind a person’s answer of ‘I am fine’, when asked ‘how are you?’. From a very young age I discovered that I had a fascination for human stories and this fascination has remained strong to this day. However, my passion for psychology did not come until I became a parent myself and struggled to find my way through the parenthood realm. In my search for bettering myself as a parent I began to search for answers to my question of ‘what makes people tick’ and sadly quite often these answers were rather negative. For example, previous trauma could be the root cause for an individual who finds relationships difficult despite desperately needing and wanting them. My journey as a parent and a counsellor has evolved from needing to know why and how things happens to an individual, to what can be done about it and how I can help this individual through this?

Since I first posed these questions, many years have passed, however these questions still sit alongside many others. I am often asked ‘how I am managing to do what I do…listen to people’s problem’. The hardest thing for me is not having to listen to people’s issues. The hardest thing for me is having to deal with the fear that I’m not doing enough, or my work doesn’t create the change clients deserve, or having to sit with the knowledge that the system doesn’t support my clients’ needs.

I see my role at FASS as a privilege - for me it is a privilege to be a counsellor and work with people who put their trust in me.”

Congratulations Natasha!

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