Pamela has over 20 years’ experience working in the field of HE/FE education as counselling/psychology lecturer, research supervisor, educational writer/developer, examiner, and service manager. She is a BACP registered counsellor and therapist who has experience delivering therapy in NHS primary care, private and third sectors.
Pamela has recently joined Validium as Training and Wellbeing Manager from one of Scotland’s largest universities. As part of her previous role, she was responsible for a university wide, confidential, early intervention listening service called ‘Peer Wellbeing Support’ (PWS). Peer Wellbeing Supporters (students and staff) were recruited, interviewed, and trained across the university to develop multiple skills required to ensure their peers were supported via the informal listening service. She was responsible for the vast growth in the service and developed robust processes and policies on safeguarding, governance quality and development. Her role included managing teams of counsellors/trainers/supervisors and wellbeing supporters (on and off campus).
In Pamela’s experience, peers talk to and support each other (in all institutions and walks of life) and it can be hugely beneficial for students to talk to a peer as issues arise, rather than waiting for them to escalate. However, it is also imperative that peer to peer services provide a robust training program ensuring clear outlines for skills development, as well as ensuring ongoing support is provided for the listener.