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Hertfordshire County Council

Safe Space offers children and young people across Hertfordshire a creative, confidential and safe space to explore any issues affecting their everyday lives.

There are various counselling, therapy and mentoring services available, both in schools and out. We also offer group work, supervision and training.


Counselling in Schools service

The Counselling in Schools service provides counselling and arts therapy to primary and secondary schools across Hertfordshire.

The service works with children and young people aged 5 -19 years (up to 21 years for care leavers). If the young person is not at school or college, we can make arrangements to see them at another appropriate space.

Therapies available:

  • Counselling (including use of play therapy skills)
  • Art(s) therapy
  • Drama therapy

Who we can work with

A professional must make the referral to Counselling in Schools.

Counselling in Schools – information for professionals

Counselling/Arts Therapy can be helpful to children and young people:

  • When there is evidence of a behavioural change e.g. becoming withdrawn or disruptive
  • When a young person is angry, shows mood swings or signs of depression
  • When parents are going through divorce or separation and there are signs of distress
  • Following the death of a family member or friend
  • When there is knowledge or suspicion of some form of abuse or domestic violence
  • When there are difficulties with friendships and/or bullying
  • When a child/young person is new to the school or area and is having difficulty settling in
  • When there are identity issues i.e. gender, cultural
  • If there are health or disability issues e.g. life limiting illnesses
  • When a child/young person refuses to engage with specialist services
  • who are willing to engage in counselling / art therapy on a voluntary basis
  • who are not engaged in counselling or therapy elsewhere at the time.

We are a traded service meaning funding is needed in order for the work to go ahead.

The majority of work is funded by schools direct. However, depending on the circumstances of the child or young person, alternative funding may be available to support the work. 

What are the benefits of providing Counselling/Arts Therapy for pupils?

  • Improved self-esteem
  • Reducing the risk of exclusion
  • Improvements in behaviour and/or attendance
  • Improved peer relationships
  • Better attainment/achievement


We offer a quality assured service

  • All our counsellors are qualified to at least Diploma level.
  • Our arts therapists are qualified to Masters level.
  • All our therapists have a valid Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) check.
  • All counsellors are accredited or working towards accreditation with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP).
  • All counsellors and arts therapists access regular clinical supervision.

Make a referral:

Professionals can complete a single service request form to refer a young person to the Counselling in Schools service.

Referrals should only be sent via email when the sender has a secure email address. Otherwise HertsFX or Schools FX must be used.

You can email the form to the Counselling in Schools team or post to:

Counselling in Schools Postal Point:


County Hall


SG13 8DF



The Safe Space mentoring programme is available to 11-19 year olds (up to 25 years for young people with learning difficulties / disabilities) across Hertfordshire.

It involves the young person meeting with a volunteer mentor for an hour or so a week, in a public place such as café or library (or engaging in a social activity). It gives the young person a chance to talk about anything they wish to discuss or want advice on.

Typically, mentoring lasts for 3 to 6 months, however, this can be longer or shorter depending on the young person’s needs.

Some young people decide to set goals at the beginning of the mentoring, whilst others simply value the one to one time, just to talk with someone outside of their family / school.

All our mentors go through a recruitment process, 2 day training and have a valid Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check.

More about mentoring:

Make a referral:

A professional must make a referral to the Mentoring programme.

Referrals should only be sent via email when the sender has a secure email address. Otherwise HertsFX or Schools FX must be used. For young people under the age of 13 signed parental consent is required.

and send it to:


Mentoring service Postal Point:


County Hall


SG13 8DF