Primary Skills for Online Counseling  Workshop

Primary Skills for Online Counseling  Workshop

A counselling workshop that has been developed to assist  in the training of lay counselors, who need to deal with troubled often traumatized people online, in their work and in their communities.

In South Africa our first line of response to people in need of psycho-social support cannot come from the relative limited number of social workers, psychologists or professional counselors. Fortunately we do have an army of non-professional counselors available. Some of them had extensive training, while others have had only a few days of training and some had none at all. While these helpers may not be able to treat deep-set and long standing emotional problems, they do have considerable compassion and humanity to draw on.

Main aim of the course


When used as a whole the course provides a basic counselling course for those who have never been trained. It is intended for participants who assist people in a variety of situations, but who are not registered professionals such as qualified psychologists and social workers.

It will be useful for counselors in a variety of counseling contexts including, but not limited to, schools, NGO’s, Faith-based organisations, the South African Police Service, Hospitals, Clinics , Counselling Call centers, Sports Centers, Education and training facilities, Government and Health and Social Services. It should develop participants who know their scope of practice, behave ethically in a counselling context, conform to minimum standards and know when to refer a client.

Course overview


This is a 8-hour module (1-day) which introduces individual to the online model of counselling. The contents include learning about ”me & others”, a look at the model of facilitation, facilitation tools, and practical exercises. It focuses on helping the client tell their story, which involves the basic but critical counselling skills of attending, listening, reflecting feelings rephrasing basic exploring and summarizing.

A 2nd 8-hour workshop ( Secondary skills for Online Counseling) is also offered where participants will learn skills which deepen their understanding of the client so that the client’s story is fully understood and unpacked. They have also deepened their relationship with the client and build a higher level of trust. giving and receiving feedback on the relationship. The counselor is also enabled to use more advanced questioning skills to elicit solutions which fit the client and which they are committed to. Difficult moments in counseling is discussed (referring, crisis management and suicidal ideation) as well as skills used to terminate counseling. These advanced skills allow the counselor to handle complex situations and limit chances that the client could be harmed in the counseling situation.

This training course can be divided into 2 workshops – Primary & Secondary Counseling Skills. More attention can then be given to practicing skills through exercises.  It can also be used in a modular way, with time lapses of no more than 2 months to train lay counselors. Workshops are booked separately.

Special rates are offered to NGO’s and faith based organisations.

Course presenter:

Dr Christo Naude

Group size:

+ 10-15 persons


The cost per workshop is R 550 per person. Cost  includes training material /manuals.

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