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Frequently Asked Questions

General Enquires

How old do you have to be to access the service?

18 years old. (If younger we can refer to one of our partners)

Can I self - refer?

Yes, you can refer yourself into nearly all of our programmes and activities - including our therapeutic services.

You can ring any of centres or just call in and book yourself an appointment.

I'm not sure what support I need or where to start?

Sometimes it can be daunting to get the help that you need or to know where to start. If you are not sure which of our services my be best for you, simply call or pop in to your nearest centre. Our friendly team will have a chat about your needs and help you to identify the best place to start.

Can I just drop in to my local centre?

Yes, you are welcome to drop in to your local centre anytime between 10 am and 3 pm (we offer an appointment only service outside of this time).

You can chat to our friendly team about what type of support you might be looking for and which service might be best for you. They can then arrange an appointment for further support or to access services. You can stop for a coffee and browse our leaflets and information.

At each of our centres we provide a range of 'drop in' activities, where there is no need to book and you can simply join in. This includes coffee mornings, some peer support groups and IT access. To find out what activities are running at your local centre click here.

Do I have to access my nearest centre?

No, we understand that not everybody wishes to access support in their local community and you are free to attend activities at any our centres.

All our support is offered in a safe and confidential environment.

Counselling Service

What Different Types Of Therapies Do You Offer?

We offer a range of talking therapies which includes:

  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
  • Counselling
  • Couple Therapy
  • High Intensity Therapy
  • Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner
What Is Counselling?

It's offered on a 1-1 basis between you and your therapist were you can explore your thoughts and feelings and or options to find your own answers in a non-judgemental, safe environment.

What Is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)?

CBT is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy which explores how thoughts affect our feelings and actions and supports you to consider how by changing our thoughts we can effectively change our feelings and actions.

How Can I Refer Someone To The Service?

1. Email: wellbeing@nhs.net OR call: 0808 280 3160

2. We will the contact the client in order to book an assessment.

3. They will then be offered a 1-1 assessment in their choice of centres.

4.The therapist will discuss with them the different types of therapy available and together they will decide which is best for the clients needs and issues.

Can I Self - Refer?

Yes, you can self refer into our therapeutic services.

1. Email: wellbeing@nhs.net OR call: 0808 280 3160.

2. You will then be booked for a pre therapy assessment or contacted within in order to book an assessment.

3. You will have a 1-1 assessment in your choice of centres.

4.The therapist will discuss with you the different types of therapy available and together you will decide which is best for your needs and issues.

How Long will I Have To Wait Before I Receive Support?

Following receipt of your referral (self or agency) you will receive a call back from our Therapeutic Service Coordinator.

Your first assessment appointment will be booked in by a member of the therapeutic team who will advise you of the current wait time. Please note, waiting times may vary depending on the type of therapy you wish to access and the current demand. Following assessment, you will be allocated an appropriate therapist from our team and agree a regular appointment slot at a time to suit you.

What Can Talking Therapies Help Me With?

We can work with you to address a wide range of issues impacting upon your mental and emotional wellbeing to help you alleviate distress and bring about positive changes. The types of issues which we can support you to address might include:

  • Feelings of panic or anxiety
  • Depression and low mood
  • Phobias and other compulsive behaviour
  • Family or relationship distress
  • Bereavement
  • Abuse, either past or present
Can I talk in confidence?

Therapy is confidential; however in exceptional circumstances confidentiality may be broken.

These circumstances could include:

* Where statutory law requires us to inform the relevant authorities (such as terrorist activities, drug trafficking or abuse of a child or vulnerable adult)

* Where you as a client give consent for the confidence to be broken.

* Where in extreme cases were we are legally compelled by a court of law.

* If we believe you are at risk of harm to yourself or others.

All our notes will remain the property of Lancashire Women's Centres' they will be securely electronically stored by us for 7 years before being destroyed.

Our policy is to inform your GP of the start and end date of your therapy, however, if you would not be happy for us to do so, we will of course respect your wishes.


Do I Need To Book A Place On The Work Club?

No need to book it's a drop - in - session, just come along.

Do you offer Employment Support for men?

We work with men who want help with IT and computers and are16 to 24 years under Invest in Youth or over 55 years under Age of Opportunity. For more information regarding our Employment Support click here.

For any other employment related support, we can refer you to our local partner organisations. Please contact your nearest centre.

I have a Job (or a zero hours contract), and I am looking for a different job – can you help me?

You can only sign up with our Work Fit Programme if you are unemployed. You could still attend our Volunteer led Work Club to carry out job search and get support building your CV.

What Support Can You Offer ?

We have employability programmes running to help anyone unemployed, ill, disabled or a carer and this will be centred around the persons needs e.g. CV writing, digital support, interview techniques, confidence building.

Do You Offer Digital Support?

Yes we are part of the BBO (Building Better Opportunities) which enables to help anyone unemployed, disabled or ill with help with any education around computers. Call your nearest centre for more information.

I am not ready to look for work yet but I do want help with my confidence .. can you help?

Yes. Our Workfit programme is designed to support women who are perhaps not quite ready to look for work, but need help with confidence, mental health support, job skills, getting basic skills qualifications etc. Your Key Coach will help you create the right support package for you. Contact your nearest centre for a referral in to this programme.

How Can I Refer?

Contact your local centre, and ask to speak to Maira or Vicki.

Can you help me whilst I am long term sick from work?

This would depend on your individual circumstances however primarily we would say you can only sign up with our WorkFit service once you have registered unemployed even if you are on P.I.P. (we could potentially work with you.) Call our centres if you would like more information.

I am unable to work because I have no employable skills and I have been in trouble with the Police, yet DWP say I have to find work can you help?

Firstly, we would have to advise you that everyone has skills they are just not aware of how to transfer them into employment. We would match you to a Work Coach who would tailor your support and your journey for you to recognise your potential, along with training either in house or through partnership organisations. As far as being in trouble with the Police as long as your sentence has been spent we can potentially still work with you to identify yourself to the person you wish to become supported with group work therapy ‘Mindfit’.

For more information, please contact your nearest centre.

I can not work or volunteer as I am on PIP (Personal Independent Payments) for a long term disability.

We can still work together on the WorkFit project due to the recognition that disabled people have a lot to offer the marketplace and employers are more aware of this than ever before.

Please contact your nearest centre to see how we can work together.


Is This Course For Me?

We have a pre-course questionnaire available to help you make the decision. Click here to access it.

Which Course Can I Start On?

If you haven't been on any of our courses before then click here for a pre-course questionnaire, if you're still unsure then please call one of our centres.

How Many People Will Be On The Course?

We try and keep the groups smaller and remember that everyone is nervous and unsure on the first session, you are all in the same boat!

Money Advice

How Do I Refer?

You can call or drop into the centre nearest to you and you will be given an appointment.

What Can You Help Me With?

We can work with you to address a wide range of issues that can be affecting you. The types of issues which we can support you with might include:

  • Benefits ( applications, mandatory reconsiderations and appeals)
  • Budgeting
  • Rent Arrears
  • FCA regulated Debt counselling (creditor mediation, token payments, financial statements)
  • Council Tax Arrears
My P.I.P.(Personal Independence Payment) has been disallowed, can you help me?

You must look at the decision, read through it and decide if you disagree with the scoring. If you do you should write down your reasoning and ask for a mandatory reconsideration first by phoning or writing to the decision maker at DWP.

But, WE CAN HELP! Contact your nearest centre for a Money Advice appointment, we can help with Mandatory reconsiderations and appeals but PLEASE NOTE YOU HAVE 28 DAYS TO REQUEST A MANDATORY RECONSIDERATION.

I've been found fit to work following a DWP assessment! But I disagree with the decision - can you help?

The process is to ask them to look at the decision again, this is known as Mandatory Reconsideration and you can do this by phone or in writing with your reasons. If you need more support with this please get in touch by calling our centres to book a Money Advice appointment.


My benefits have stopped! What do I do?

We can help, we are FCA regulated debt counsellors and we operate free 1 to 1 advice sessions to help with solutions contact your nearest centre for a 1 to 1 private money advice appointment.

I have children, but really want to get back to work, what can I do?

We can do back to work calculations and help with employment support and volunteering opportunities and any training requirements through our extensive Employment Support Offer.

AVERT Conditional Caution

How Will This Affect My DBS? (Disclosure and Barring Service)

A conditional caution will show up in a routine DBS check if deemed relevant

Do I have to attend these appointments, what happens if I don't?

When you sign the form to accept the Conditional Caution you are agreeing to complete the conditions noted. You must contact the police if you are struggling to comply to see if new arrangements can be made. Failure to attend all the appointments could result in you being prosecuted for the original offence.

What Happens At The Appointments

The appointments will consist of an assessment, action planning and goal setting, support relevant to your needs and an evaluation of the process. The support offered will be tailored to your individual circumstances, if you have been referred following a shoplifting offence due to financial issues the support, for example, will include debt, budgeting or benefit advice.

Penalty Notice Disposal (Education) (PNDE)

What Happens When I Attend For My PNDE? (Penalty Notice Disposal)

On receipt of your PNDE you will be given instructions on how to book onto the course, which will be arranged for the nearest convenient LWC centre. The course consists of one 3 hour appointment , with this time being split between an assessment, some group work relevant to the offence and an evaluation of the day. You must bring ID to these sessions.

How Will A PNDE Affect My DBS? (Disclosure and Barring Service)

A PND (Penalty Notice Disorder) does not form part of a criminal record but a record will be created on the Police National Computer (PNC) for PNDs issued for recordable offences. A PND may be disclosed as part of an enhanced DBS check if deemed relevant.

Do I Have To Attend These Appointments, What Happens If I Don’t?

You must contact the police if you are struggling to attend to see if a new appointment can be made. A person given a PND has 21 days to either book a course, pay a penalty of £60 or £90 or request a Court hearing. If you fail to do either then a fine of one and a half times the penalty amount is registered in a magistrates’ court for enforcement.