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Three local businesses have come together to create a new project that aims to make counselling services more accessible.
You Are Collective has announced “The Local Counselling Card” through a partnership with The Local Gift Card and William and Associates Counselling Services.
The gift card can be bought, donated or gifted for anyone who needs or wants counselling services.
You Are Collective is a Kelowna based brand that brings awareness to mental health.
The organization says that mental health services are becoming more needed than ever, yet Canadians still say they're unable to access services due to financial barriers and not knowing where to go for support.
"We hear more than anything how challenging it is to find access to affordable mental health support - and then to actually find a match can sometimes be a tedious process," says Rebecca Steinhubl, co-founder of You Are Collective.
"The idea with [TLCC] is to take some of that weight off. We have detailed bios to allow you to learn about the counsellors ahead of time and they all offer free consultations along with low-fee options."
Counselling card recipients will have the ability to choose from multiple different counselling services that register to accept the card.
People can also donate the card to community initiatives that could benefit from having the resource on-hand. Anyone can donate to the cause through You Are Collective's #1MillionCampaign, where donations will be calculated and handed out quarterly as counselling cards to community partners.
"We know there are nonprofits and organizations out there doing the work, we want to support them and hopefully lessen the burden of inconsistent funding and the community's ever increasing need for services." Sarah Coffey, The Local Gift Card founder.
A website has been set up for the initiative, which hosts a comprehensive directory with relevant and up to date bios from participating counsellors.
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