"Being supported to understand patterns of behaviours, and how to challenge these, has been possible through contact with SWEDA."

client, anon

What is counselling?

Counselling is a talking therapy where you will have the opportunity to explore your situation, talk about your feelings and emotions, and find ways to move forward. This might be in the form of ‘tools’ to help you in various scenarios; a chance to process any trauma that you have suffered; gaining an understanding of how you came to be where you are; learning more about your ‘triggers’ or finding ways to ease your distress and manage when things are difficult.

About SWEDA Counselling

You may be experiencing an eating disorder, you may have recovered, yet feel the need for support or you may be a carer for someone with an eating disorder and feel that you need support for yourself. We offer non-judgmental help, in a comfortable and professional environment.

We are an organisational member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) which means that we have been assessed to reach a high standard of professional and ethical practice. 

SWEDA counsellors and psychotherapists are a mix of qualified and highly experienced practitioners and student counsellors in the last stages of the training process. All our therapists must reach a minimum standard of training before we allow them to work with clients and all have been through our in-house professional eating disorder training. Student counsellors will have been signed off as ‘fit to practice’ by their training institution.

How does it work?

If you wish to access our counselling service, you will first be offered an assessment. This process involves talking through your situation with our clinical lead who will ask you, amongst other things, about your history, your current situation and what you would like to achieve in counselling, You will have an opportunity to ask questions and talk about what is important to you. This assessment costs £25.

If you and your assessor both feel that counselling is the right path for you, you will be allocated a counsellor to work with moving forward. You can express any preferences you might have – for example, if you would prefer a counsellor of a particular gender – although we can’t always guarantee we can provide this and you may have to wait longer.

Initially you will be offered a block of six sessions and you will need to attend at least five of those if you wish to carry on. This is because we believe that counselling doesn’t work well if the client does not attend regularly. After you complete your six initial sessions, you are free to agree more sessions with your counsellor if you would like. They will always be booked in blocks of six with a review at the end of each block.


Our counselling service is low-cost which means you will pay significantly less than you would for private counselling – as an example, it actually costs us £65 to run a counselling session. We have a sliding scale between £10-£35 per session and you will be asked to pay what you feel you can afford. However, no-one will be turned away from our services due to an inability to pay. You can read our Fee Policy here.



“I can’t emphasise enough what a massive part SWEDA have played in my journey to finding myself again. They are an incredible charity and are brilliant at their job. Over the past two years I have really started to understand myself and I have addressed issues that I had hid away in the past and with my counsellor’s amazing listening, non-judgmental and supportive skills I have been able to take back control of myself and rationally look at my emotions in day to day life."

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