The START team are all committed to providing a quality service to all those we see from the office team through to the the highly qualified counsellors many of whom have years of experience in counselling victims and survivors of sexual abuse and sexual violence. They have all undergone specialist training and continue to update their knowledge and practices, and some have specialist qualifications and are working towards higher counselling qualifications. Many of the team at START are survivors themselves.
Steve manages START services. Steve joined START in 2015 having worked for many years in Child Protection and working with Vulnerable Adults.
As a survivor himself he is aware of the issues and the importance of promoting and providing good quality counselling as part of the healing process.
Rhi is the new Admin at START, as of November 2021.
She’s working here while she studies counselling and likes to write fiction in her spare time.
Kate joined START in November 2021, she works in Admin at START Mon-Wed.
Kate has a PhD in Psychology Research and helps us with data and research. She is currently studying Counselling.
Amanda joined START in 2017. Amanda has recently attained a 1st Class Honours Degree in Humanistic and Integrative Counselling.
Amanda is an experienced counsellor and works with adult survivors twice a week in the daytime. She is also one of our Lotus Project managers.
Bev joined START in May 2019 and will be working on our new STEPS support programme, she has been working as a rape crisis counsellor for the last three years.
Bev is has a qualified person centred counsellor and has recently attained a 1st Class Honours Degree in Humanistic and Integrative Counselling. She is also one of our Lotus Project managers.
Diane joined START in November 2021, she trained as a counsellor whilst a researcher at Harefield Hospital and moved to Hampshire to run the BA Hons in Counselling & Psychotherapy at the University of Southampton.
She has appeared on television and radio in the UK (Victoria Derbyshire Show; Radio 4 and regional BBC radio) and China speaking about counselling & mental health and the benefits of Animal Assisted Therapy.
In addition, Diane runs an eclectic assortment of workshops such as Dream Analysis, Effective Supervision; Animal Assisted Therapy and the use of Complementary Therapies.
Susan has been with START since 2003 and undertakes most of the Under-18s assessments as well being one of the counselling team.
Susan has a Diploma in Children and Adolescent counselling and has also worked with Adult survivors.
Heidi has a background in working with troubled teenagers including dealing with abusive relationships.
Heidi is an experienced counsellor and joined START in 2016, and works with both Adults and as part of the Under-18s service.
Julie has been with START since 2003 and has a huge amount of experience over many years of counselling adult survivors.
Julie volunteers in the evenings twice a week.
Andy has been with START since 2014 providing specialist counselling for many adult survivors.
Andy is one of our valued male counsellors. Andy previously worked as a counsellor at the local University dealing with student related welfare issues.
Jim is one of the START assessors and supervisors as well as an adult counsellor and volunteers two days a week at START.
Jim previously worked as a teacher and also ran a walking adventure holidays.
Cherrill joined START in 2017. Cherrill works with adult survivors and volunteers twice a week with START.
Cherrill used to work as a local teacher before she retired.
Stephanie joined START in November 2019. She is a Qualified Humanistic Integrative Counsellor with a background in mental health and trauma settings.
Having previously provided counselling in another crisis centre and forensic settings she has now joined the START team. Stephanie is also furthering her studies working towards a BSc Hons in Psychology & Child Development.
Marion joined START in August 2020. She is a qualified humanistic integrative counsellor.
She has worked with Portsmouth Abuse and Rape Counselling Service and has worked extensively with young people.
Sarah joined START in December 2020, she has an MA in counselling and Psychotherapy, and is an accredited counsellor, with over 16 years counselling experience.
Sarah has counselled both adults and young people, working in schools, colleges, Wellbeing Centers and for the NHS.
Nicky joined START in March 2021, she qualified as a humanistic counsellor in 2014.
She has since provided counselling to young people and adults in a variety of settings.
Liz joined START in April 2021, she has worked as a Specialist Counsellor in London for 6 years and as a Trauma Counsellor in Basingstoke for a year.
She has a wealth of experience working to heal experiences of trauma, and is also one of our assessors.
Sara joined START in April 2021, and has been a counsellor since 2006. She has an Advanced Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling (Integrative).
She became an accredited counsellor with the BACP in 2015 and also became a qualified counselling supervisor in 2016. She is also a trained Hypnotherapist.
She works mainly with adults and young people and has worked a for many years in the field of rape and sexual abuse.
Sharon joined START in April 2021. She qualified in Humanistic Integrative Counselling in 2000 and has worked ever since in the area of rape & sexual abuse, initially working for South London RASAC and then more recently for BRASACC.
Ella joined START in April 2021.
She has a background in art, working in mental health with complex needs and with adolescents who have experienced trauma. She has worked as a therapist since 2015, within a mental health setting, with trauma and sexual abuse.
Nicola joined START in March 2021.
She has a Foundation Degree in Humanistic Counselling based on Transactional Analysis. She has worked in bereavement and addiction.
Chris joined START in September 2021, he works primarily with children and younger adults and is a trauma informed counsellor who specialises in sexual trauma.
He has a person centred therapeutic perspective while drawing on other counselling methods and brings a new dynamic to the START team.
Call our Advice & Support Line on 01962 868 688 or 01962 864 433
Anonymous SMS Text helpline service: 07860 027 793
Available 24 hours
"I’ve been struggling with my trauma for over 6 years and Amanda has been so supportive and comforting in how she approached my recovery. She’s taught me how to rediscover myself and work on how to change the way I acknowledge what happened to me and how I am able to change the way it is affecting me in everyday life. I’ve put her advice into action and I’m overwhelmed with the results. Amanda is a true credit to RASAC and I’m eternally grateful for her help."
"Counselling at RASAC has helped me to feel more confident in myself and that I am a worthy person in this world."
"The counselling was exactly what I needed. I found the whole experience very eye opening and can now walk away with a whole new level of confidence and happiness."
"I have gained a new understanding of what happened to me. I am feeling better and my thinking is more positive."
"I am now in control of my thoughts and my life. I have gained self-confidence in so many ways and I am no longer haunted by the past."
"I have been given the tools to cope with everyday life. Without counselling I would have continued to deny my situation and feelings which was having extreme detrimental effect on myself, family and friends… RASAC has saved me from self destruction without the support I would have crumbled – a true life saver."
"My RASAC counselling has completely changed my life… I am a better mother, a more involved member of the community and I am able to keep myself safe."
"I was counselled for almost a year. I had a wonderful counsellor who helped me through a very difficult and unpleasant time in my life. It has been a process of healing by revisiting past places which at one time felt unimaginable. The journey has been raw and unnerving but slowly I came to see how I was repairing my damaged self. I finally accepted ownership of what had happened to me and was able to let go of my guilt and shame. My counsellor understood my outlook on life and created a connection with me that was very special. I eventually looked forward to my session as a weekly debrief rather than a purge. I am as happy and confident as I have ever been and I tell people about what I have learnt to help turn their negativity into positivity. Fear can be a very powerful emotion and prevent us from moving on in our lives but once it is confronted the clouds separate and you can focus on that hint of sunshine."
"Thank-you for the support, for the first time since talking about the sexual abuse to someone it is really helping me."
"Thank you so much for all your time and support while I was working through all of the stuff that happened - I really couldn't have done it without your help and input." Male client - June 2021