Background

Bright Light Relationship Counselling is a charity that provides counselling, family therapy support, sex therapy, life skills coaching to young people, and counselling in schools. They also support families in recovery after alcohol addiction.  

 

Challenge

Bright Light was facing challenges reaching as well as supporting young people as, typically, they were not found to be comfortable with face-to-face counselling.  Bright Light also have clients, such as carers and people with disabilities etc., where travelling to a venue is very difficult for them. Their services are crisis driven - they receive calls for help when issues have reached crisis point and relationships are near to or have broken down.  

To combat these challenges, Bright Light were looking to:

  • counsel by digital/telephone/texting and other means,
  • deliver training programmes for their clients to enable and empower them to self-manage their health and wellbeing and better prepare them for key life transitions (i.e. gender identity, becoming a parent for the first time, becoming a full-time carer, disability, separation/divorce, being safe on-line, managing addiction).

 

Solution

Bright Light approached Interface, looking for a university or further education student to compile a feasibility/business plan that would include:

  • digital research to identify what would be needed (equipment, costs),
  • potential demand for the service,
  • resourcing requirements (people, cost, equipment, time, management),
  • a competition policy in place from COSCA (Counselling and Psychotherapy in Scotland) and guidelines re telephone and video-conferencing counselling,
  • existing skills/expertise identified in their counsellors plus suggestions for additional skills that would support their new business plan,   
  • Other ideas for expansion.

 

Benefits

The feasibility study came just before the COVID-19 outbreak and the recommendations provided by the students allowed Bright Light to rapidly adapt their service model and set up digital counselling sessions. This enabled them to continue to help their most vulnerable clients, to keep in touch with them, as well as bringing in much needed income to the charity when many others were struggling.

 

“Working on this project was nothing short of an amazing and rewarding experience. Julie and the Bright Light team were dynamic and insightful to collaborate with, and it was humbling to learn what an important resource Bright Light is in Edinburgh. We had a brilliant opportunity to learn more than just business theory, we engaged in a project where we helped make an impact in the community.”  Bergazdenova Aidana, Garduno Sanchez Guillermo, Freiherr Von Mentzingen Jakob, Anastopoulou Evanthia, Rasmussen Victoria – University of Edinburgh Business School students

 

 

Bright Light’s doors are wide open and welcomes people and families who feel they could benefit from counselling support in these strange and challenging times.

Contact askus@bright-light.org.uk and visit their website www.bright-light.org.uk.

Julie Hogg-Weld

Thank you for sending me such a wonderful group of very talented, professional young people. My words cannot express my gratitude enough for what they have done for us. The feasibility study and project itself was very much needed but timing was impeccable as was delivery…… I cannot thank you and your students more highly. There is nothing I would have changed as they were terrific throughout; professional plus diligent. I give them 150 out of 100 for delivery, style, commitment, vision of what we needed, professionalism and teamwork.

Julie Hogg-Weld, CEO, Bright Light Relationship Counselling
Professor Roberto Rossi

Support received from Interface is key to the success of our course on Project Management in Business Analysis at the University of Edinburgh Business School. The course is hands-on and requires tight interaction between students and firms to operationalise theories and tools from the various streams of project management literature, and to experience real-world challenges typically faced in the management of small-sized industry project. Over the years, Interface has provided introductions to firms from a variety of sectors, from fintech to the third sector. Some of these relationships endured over the years and developed into fully funded research collaborations.

 

Roberto Rossi, Chair in Uncertainty Modelling and Director of PG Programmes, University of Edinburgh Business School