Welcome to the launch of Health E-Counselling! This is an exciting time for me as I realize the dream of starting an online practice and building a service that I hope will be convenient and accessible to those who prefer online services to in-person services and to those who might not otherwise have benefited from psychotherapy.
The idea for the site was borne several years ago from a desire to help a First Nations community that was in crisis with a suicide epidemic. I reached out to the Executive Director, Leaders, and Crisis Team members on the reserve to communicate my background, experience, and interest in helping to support their grief stricken community. The response I received was that while they needed help exactly like I could offer, the community awaited feedback on a special emergency request to government in order to access qualified services.
What a challenge for a community in a state of crisis to have to manage, apply, and wait for the necessary help… Why should access to services be this hard? For anyone… I became more aware of this service gap in so many instances outside of far reaching, ostracized communities, to the more local, stigmatized groups that may refuse mental health services out of condition of illness or further risk of discrimination. Not to mention waitlists. There seemed to be endless waitlists suggesting a shortage of services for the amount of people in need which only raises the risk of worsening conditions and behaviours.
But, what if services could be available regardless of distance? What if services could be available when needed? What if services could be prioritized by the client? What if online services could fill this gap? How could technology serve to improve the gaps that exist in mental health services? And, how could I be part of that?
These questions led me to view the ability of technology to be of greater therapeutic importance than I had ever considered. How is it that online services are the way of the future for almost everything but for what might be the most significant type of service one could need?
What started as an interest in helping a small Northern, First Nations community led me to explore the possibility of creating a website that would eliminate barriers in accessing qualified services for anyone in need. I started researching, planning, hiring, developing, and eventually launching Health E-Counselling. It’s a career highlight to provide a service with the intention of reaching those in need who for whatever the reason, are unable to access in-person therapy. I wholeheartedly believe in the benefits of online services and this website has been designed to optimize what technology can provide you in the field of psychotherapy.
Take a look around the website and see what you think! Better yet, book yourself in for a session and really see what it’s all about!
Before I leave you to peruse the website, I want to let you in on the inspiration for Health E-Counselling’s arrow logo. I learned that an arrow in some First Nations communities can be interpreted as a symbol of strength and courage; it denotes power, force, direction, and movement…which could also describe the intrapsychic process that can occur in psychotherapy. Below I’ve added an image that has been circulating Facebook for some time. The written text suggests that personal growth can be described through use of an arrow, which requires a difficult pull backwards prior to being launched into a new and hopeful direction. How fitting for the online psychotherapy services offered here…