What is involved in training to become a peer counseling volunteer for CWM?

Explanation of Basic Peer Counseling Training Contents

Techniques for Individual Counseling (1-3) and Quality Control (4-7)

  1. Personal characteristics that help a counseling volunteer be effective
  2. Basic counseling guidelines
  3. Specific “Do’s” and “Don’ts”
  4. Confidentiality: Definition and basic rules of confidentiality
  5. Situations which require exceptions
  6. Talking about matters of confidentiality with clients and inquirers
  7. Knowing what we can’t handle: a) Explains status of CWM counseling volunteers (CVs)as paraprofessional counseling volunteers; b) Points out “red flag” situations that CVs should consider for referral to professional/credentialed counselors; c) Explains the need for each CV to be personally in an advanced state of her own healing before trying to help someone else, and admonishes the CV to not try to counsel others in issues where she has unresolved issues.

Unless confidentiality is protected, our ministry is rendered ineffective.

Setting Personal Boundaries

Setting personal boundaries helps the counseling volunteer keep a balance and set boundaries in the client/counselor relationship

  1. The balance necessary between protection and vulnerability
  2. Practical application of boundaries
  3. How personal needs and unresolved conflicts can become entangled in the therapeutic process

For counseling volunteers who are completing their own healing process, this warning is very important.

Understanding Your Client—Personality Temperaments

  1. A description of the four basic personality types:
    Sanguine, Choleric, Melancholy and Phlegmatic
  2. The strengths and weaknesses of each type will be presented and discussed

This information is most valuable in understanding yourself as counseling volunteer, the client you work with, and the dynamics of the interaction between the two of you, as well as how the client will react to others in her life.

Communication Techniques

  1. Basic types of communication techniques
  2. Levels of communication
  3. Rules and attitudes necessary for effective communication (listen, try to understand, and give feedback)
  4. Roadblocks that hinder communication

Listening Skills Techniques

  1. Personal qualities necessary to be a good listener
  2. Positions counseling volunteers take in relationship to their clients
  3. Choosing between what is acceptable and what is not acceptable
  4. Levels of listening
  5. Roadblocks that hinder listening

Much of the effectiveness of ministry involves skills in listening.

Techniques of Group Facilitating

  1. Rationale
  2. Techniques
  3. Areas of need
  4. Nuts and bolts of beginning a group
  5. Practical application

The Healing Process

Session 1 includes:

  1. Introduction to the recovery process
  2. The characteristics of an emotionally wounded person

Session 2 includes:

  • Stages of the healing process

Session 3 includes:

  1. Presents and describes the sixteen core issues common to all woundedness
  2. Instructions for working through problems, conflicts or issues

Regardless of the cause for woundedness, the healing process involves working through core issues.

Unhealthy Relationships

  1. A description of unhealthy relationships
  2. Its causes and symptoms
  3. How it influences relationships
  4. Steps to recovery

Ninety-six percent of us are codependent to some degree, and codependency hinders emotional health.

Distorted Image of God and Spiritual Abuse—How it Affects Healing

  1. Spiritual abuse as the cause of a distorted image of God
  2. How a distorted image of God happens in childhood
  3. How it happens in adulthood
  4. How a distorted image of God affects the view of ourselves and others
  5. How can we as counseling volunteers assist in healing?
  6. The R’s of Recovery=

Rest Rehabilitation Releasing the hurt Risk taking

  1. Our role as fellow believers in the healing process

A distorted image of God hinders the healing process because Christ is the healer. If we are unable to view God accurately, healing is impeded.

Applications Workshop

Students observe a mock counseling session and participate in mock sessions.

Challenge to Personal Accountability

This closing workshop challenges the counseling volunteer to:

  1. Personal integrity
  2. Continual pursuit of a deep relationship with God
  3. Vigilance in recognizing and confronting evil in ministry situations

Unless our personal relationship with God is healthy and developing, we will have nothing to give others.

We conclude the series shortly after this workshop with a graduation ceremony and a “blessing” for ministry.