Therapeutic Counselling alumnus finds true calling
For many people, the wrong path can lead to the right destination and that’s exactly what happened to Rebecca McCaffery. A keen writer, Rebecca returned to education to study English A levels before discovering her passion for emotional conversations and counselling and going on to study counselling qualifications.
Most recently, Rebecca has combined her love of writing with her knowledge of counselling to craft mental health articles that offer advice and promote positive wellbeing. The articles are inspired by her own experiences and the knowledge gleaned from the Therapeutic Counselling Diploma Level 4 at Leeds City College.
We caught up with Rebecca to find out about her mental health journey, her studies at Leeds City College and her plans for the future.
Rebecca makes up her mind
Originally, Rebecca studied English A levels, however, she quickly realised that her interests lay elsewhere.
She says: “I went back to school aged 25 to study English A levels and I loved writing about real life subjects. It then clicked that I have always loved those deep conversations you have with your friends, and have always been in touch with my emotions! I wanted to become a counsellor.”
Rebecca went on to study Counselling Skills Certificate Level 3 which confirmed her aspirations to help others.
“I studied the Level 3 Counselling Skills Certificate and felt like I had finally found my passion. It all came so naturally to me. I then went on to study the Therapeutic Counselling Level 4 at Leeds City College,” says Rebecca.
How was her experience at Leeds City College? The course had a significant impact on her personal growth.
“My experience at college was amazing and life changing. I met some great people and learnt so much about myself!” Rebecca says.
A positive frame of mind
Rebecca struggled with anxiety herself which led her to want to help others. Once she learned additional support methods via the Level 4 diploma, she used her newfound knowledge to try and provide support to a mass audience.
“I suffered with anxiety for over 15 years and the Level 4 diploma taught me so much about how counselling (talking) can help with this and other mental health issues without the need for medication,” says Rebecca.
“I started off by writing about my own experiences and what I learnt about myself since overcoming my anxiety problem and when that was published in a magazine, I had a newfound belief in myself! I then just continued writing mental health articles, I write whenever I feel inspired,” Rebecca continues.
Since completing her course, Rebecca has worked at Well Women charity. In addition, she has volunteered at Cruse Bereavement Care.
A presence of mind for the future
Rebecca has ambitious plans for the future to start her own practice and hopes to focus on relationship counselling but in the meantime will focus on studying a Level 5 diploma.
She says: “I start the Level 5 diploma at Relate in the new year. I want to specialise in relationship counselling now as it fascinates me. Marriage and relationships are so hard at times and I think there is a market out there for much needed help and advice.
“Eventually, I would love to have my own private practice but I’m taking my time and not rushing this process.”