Connect began operating in 2006. It was named the National Counselling Helpline Service and was renamed Connect in late 2008.
Connect is funded by the Health Service Executive (HSE) and has its own independent Board which includes members of existing support groups Aislinn, Right of Place and Soca UK, as well as representatives from the HSE.
Connect is an additional service to the HSE’s National Counselling Service which provides free face to face counselling for people who have suffered abuse, trauma or neglect in their childhood. Connect provides counselling services by telephone which may suit some people better. The service was established after it became apparent some years ago that there had been widespread childhood abuse and neglect in Ireland.
Connect counsellors have accredited qualifications in counselling or psychotherapy, recognised by the professional associations. They have backgrounds in Nursing, Psychology and Social Work and continue their training to follow best practice in how to work with people who have experienced a difficult childhood.
Nature of the Service
Connect is not intended to be a crisis service but a supportive and therapeutic service for people who would like to talk about the abuse, neglect or trauma they have suffered, or want help in dealing with the past to help take better control of their lives today.
Connect is led by Service Director, Theresa Merrigan who is supported by Administrative Assistant, Rita Hamilton. They can both be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by calling 01 865 7400.
Members of the Connect Board
Back l-r: Michael Cowap, Breda Lawless, Mairead Quigley, Mick Waters and Andrew Brennan. Front l-r: Patricia Carey (Chair) and Gerry Kelly. (Oliver Burke missing from picture.)