Community Help Service is committed to the health and safety of our staff, volunteers and clients. During the current coronavirus situation, we have put in place guidelines which protect our community whilst reducing the impact on our services. This includes reducing our in-office staff and using video conferencing for our meetings and training.
1) Clients must wear a mask at all times whilst visiting the Centre unless explicitly stated by their therapist. They must also sanitise their hands upon entry.
2) Clients should arrive as close to their appointment time as possible and will be greeted at the door by their therapist. The waiting room is not in use.
3) Do not attend your appointment if you develop flu symptoms or respiratory complaints.
4) It is important that should you experience any COVID symptoms or test positive following a visit to our Centre, you notify CHS in writing, especially if your visit occurred within the 2 days prior to your symptoms appearing, so that appropriate action can be taken promptly.
The position of clinical director at CHS has been taken by Marie-Thérèse Kastl, following the retirement of Harry Pomerantz. Harry held this leadership role for the past three years and was a member of the adult clinical team for the past nine.
Marie-Thérèse is no stranger to CHS having joined the organisation some eighteen years ago. She works with children and adults and practices family therapy too, both at CHS and in private practice. She was also, for a number of years, one of the professional supervisors for the Help Line, providing regular support to the volunteer team. Without doubt Marie-Thérèse has a thorough understanding of the many facets of CHS. Her aims for the coming years?
"We are a diverse group of highly qualified people from different cultural and psychotherapeutic backgrounds. We work best in a collaborative way, sharing our knowledge and learning with one another and in this way providing just the right kind of help to our clients. I want to encourage and develop this collegial spirit". Beyond CHS Marie-Thérèse wants to:
Harry, having reached his 65th year, has decided it is time for a change. He acknowledges the trust and faith that his colleagues put in him, as clinical director, and is certain that Marie Therese will "serve the needs of CHS in an excellent fashion" Harry will remain in private practice for one day a week and looks forward to continuing collaboration with his CHS colleagues.
Developments Harry has seen since joining CHS in 2005 include the new law on psychotherapy, changes in the ethical framework of the Commission of Psychologists and in the reimbursement regime of the European institutions and the worrying shortage of psychiatrists – "one of our most precious resources". He is however confident that CHS has the organisational structure to manage these changes and continue to improve its quality. He is particularly proud of the Help Line – the "cornerstone of our community-based approach". Coming towards the end of his tenure as director Harry welcomed the opportunity to organize the programme for the successful 45th anniversary Burnout Conference. He welcomes too the developing collaboration with Castle Craig Scotland, with the U-Center in Holland and with other employee assistance programmes. "Our place in the chain of care is essential for our future" concludes Harry.