Guide to Peer Counseling

Peer counseling is the process by which an individual gives nonjudgmental, nondirective support to a peer who is experiencing a personal crisis. It is short term, often done by telephone, and provided by a lay person rather than a professional therapist. Containing abundant demonstrative case examples, this book is designed to provide the skills necessary to counsel—from the initial needs assessment (for resources like food, shelter, medical care, physical protection, or unconditional support) through the conduct of a session (how to start and end one, identifying and reflecting clients’ feelings, typical roadblocks, and confidentiality). It closes with special attention to handling crisis situations like suicidal emergencies and counseling the dying. Jewel Rumley Cox has distilled the wisdom of more than twenty years as a peer counselor and trainer in this comprehensive and sound volume. Her know-how will endow prospective volunteers with confidence, and provide trainers with an invaluable tool for their instructional programs.

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