Privacy Policy
Who we are:

We are a Counselling Service situated in River Walk, Tonbridge, Kent. The TCS Board of Trustees has overall responsibility for the running of the charity and they support the Counselling Manager, Nicola Canham, in leading the service and its day-to-day running. We have a team of freelance counsellors who see clients working under the guidance and policies of TCS.

As you engage with our service, we will request information about you that enables us to carry out our service in a professional manner. You have a right to know how your information will be stored and processed. We are registered Data Controllers and Data Processors because of how we collect and use your data.

What information do we collect?:

When you complete either an online or paper Counselling Enquiry Form, we will invite you to meet with a TCS counsellor for an assessment so that both parties can establish whether we are the right service for you. This form include details of consent and confidentiality and your initial contact preferences. By completing the form you are consenting that information can be shared about you a) within TCS to provide you with a service b) with third parties if any immediate risk of harm to self or others are identified a)if we are required by a court. 

Please note that if paying by cheque or bank transfer or other electronic method, your name will appear on our bank statement. Our Book keeper Jill Gibbs will see your name on the TCS bank statement.

Why do we collect your information?:

We collect this information to fulfil our contractual and professional obligations to you. The information, is helpful to us as it aids our communication with you, it enables us to consider carefully if we are the right service for you and if so to link you with the most appropriate counsellor for you depending on expertise and availability, it enables us to pass information to the counsellor you will be working with.

Information Storage:

TCS stores all information about you using an encrypted database which is confidential to the TCS service. Once you are placed with a counsellor, only your counsellor and the TCS manager will have access to this information. If you go on to have counselling, your counsellor will keep brief notes about your session.

In the event of your counsellor becoming incapacitated or deceased, the Counselling Manager would use your contact details to inform you and discuss your wishes regarding counselling with a new counsellor where this is possible.

Online Security:

We want to make sure that your data is protected to prevent unauthorised access.  We strongly advise you to check that your Wi-Fi is secure, ensure your devices are password protected and not left where other people can access them. We strongly advise that you use a personal computer and/or email account and that your device has anti-virus software, firewall protection and encryption. We strongly advise you to use a private Wi-Fi connection and not a public one and you have any listening enabled devices eg Alexa disabled. TCS cannot be held responsible for any security breaches outside our control. Telephone and video counselling sessions are conducted from a private and confidential environment that ensures we are not overheard.

How long do we keep data for?:

Whilst working with you we need to keep information to fulfil our contractual commitment to you. We also have a legitimate interest to keep information for up to 5 years in relation to client information that might be needed by a court of law.

What are your rights?:

You have the right to see the information we keep and make any corrections if it is not accurate. You have the right to see your notes and what information we hold about you and if you would like to have access to your client notes, please contact the Manager, Nicola Canham for a Subject Access Request form (SAR) . TCS has an obligation to respond to this request within 30 days of receiving it. We will never use your client data for marketing. 

You have the right to complain. If you are unhappy with your experience at TCS and you feel able to, please discuss this with your counsellor in the first instance. Failing that, contact the Counselling Manager, Nicola Canham in writing, who will address your complaint and respond within a reasonable time. TCS also adheres to the BACP (British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy) Ethical Framework and the ACC (Association of Christian Counsellors) Ethical Framework. Details of how to make a formal complaint can be found on their respective websites. If your complaint concerns how your data has been processed please contact the ICO (information Commissioners Office). Website links can be found at the bottom of this document.

Your consent and our contractual rights:

By agreeing to this privacy document, you are giving consent to us collecting your data. 

If you have any difficulty understanding this document or have any questions, please email our Counselling Manager, Nicola Canham or telephone 01732 605046. BACP (British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy) General Data Protection Regulation May 2018 (GDPR: Our ICO registration number is ZA065319. 

Tonbridge Counselling Service, 1st Floor, Gilbert House, Tonbridge, Kent TN9 1DT Registered in England & Wales as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation No CE000777 Registered Charity No 1155690. Registered Office: Gilbert House, River Walk, Tonbridge, TN91DT