A new counselling service for Trans, Non-Binary and Intersex individuals has launched in Wirral.
The new and unique service will be delivered by Cheshire and Merseyside Adult Gender Identity Collaborative (CMAGIC) with the support of LCR Pride Foundation and funded by NHS Wirral Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).
The free sessions are delivered by experienced counsellors and are available via self-referral. This fills a gap in service provision that is vital for the health and wellbeing of the Trans community. Statistics show Trans people are more likely to experience poor mental health, especially when they take steps to move forward with their gender transition.
Surveys have shown that almost half (48%) of Trans people in Britain have attempted suicide at least once, 84% have considered it, while more than half (55%) have been diagnosed with depression at some point*. Local research established by the NAVAJO Merseyside Cheshire LGBTIQA Partnership has shown that for young people up to the age of 26 those figures are considerably higher.
The new counselling service will be vital to support other initiatives and reduce the number of people who are at greater risk.
The CMAGIC Counselling Service can be accessed by self-referral via the CMAGIC website (www.cmagic.org.uk/counselling). After contacting the service, referrals will be sent to the client’s assigned counsellor and will then be informed when to expect their first appointment.
Anthony Griffin, Chair of CMAGIC, said: “We are all extremely excited to see the launch of our counselling service in Wirral. We know that this service, which is based on our existing care model, stands the greatest chance of reaching people. It has been designed by trans people, for trans people in collaboration with well trained and greatly experienced counsellors. This is particularly vital for younger and older Trans, Non-Binary and Intersex people who are amongst the most vulnerable and isolated within our communities.
“We are indebted to NHS Wirral CCG for their understanding of the complexities of the issues and challenges that Trans, Non-Binary and Intersex people face.”
Simon Banks Chief Officer, NHS Wirral CCG, said: “We are proud to support the launch of this service which will improve access to gender identity healthcare and support the health and wellbeing needs of trans people living in Wirral. CMAGIC will provide support, information and counselling to people during any stage of their transition journey and we look forward to seeing the positive impact of this service for transgender and non-binary people.”
The launch of the Wirral Counselling Service comes just 12 months after CMAGIC announced a new specialist gender incongruence pathway pilot, serving Cheshire and Merseyside, in partnership with Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust and an identical counselling service in Cheshire, funded by NHS Cheshire Clinical Commissioning Group.
To make a self-referral to the CMAGIC Counselling Service for Wirral or Cheshire visit: www.cmagic.org.uk/counselling
For information about CMAGIC’s full range of services visit: www.cmagic.org.uk
*Trans Mental Health Survey 2012