A counselling group is celebrating 25 years of service across the Lancaster district.
North Lancashire Counselling Service held a special reunion, welcoming Lancaster City Councillors and the Mayor of Lancaster Jon Barry.
Sue Kiernan, former coordinator, said: “It was a wonderful reunion of some of the counsellors and management from the past, and it was an opportunity to meet those who are presently involved in the service.
“It was a great encouragement to hear that the values and ethos have not changed over the years and that NLCS is still offering something quite unique in the Lancaster area.”
Sue spoke about the beginnings saying NLCS owe everything to Arthur Longworth’s vision of people in the north Lancashire area having someone to go to who would listen to them in confidence and without judgement.
In 1990 he gathered around him a group of like-minded people who were willing to give of their time and expertise, voluntarily.
It was at times, particularly at first, a painful journey, with the deaths of some key people, changes of venue, differences over techniques and practice and shortage of money, but it has emerged as a service to the community offering professional counselling without charge, and without limit to the number of sessions they can have.
Dennis Dickson, who has been with the organisation 20 years, said: “The event brought back to me why I joined NLCS and have remained.
“NLCS was never an easy organisation to join, they had exacting standards and today’s students tell me the same tale. As a counsellor, it was and is always a privilege, to be invited to join someone on their life journey, to share their deepest, darkest moments.
“It is very humbling that people put their faith in you to help them on their journey at a difficult moment in their lives.”
The North Lancs Counselling Service is based in the centre of Lancaster and offers free counselling to Lancaster and District. For more visit www.northlancscounselling.org.uk/