As the pandemic has triggered a mental health crisis at a faster rate, the need for easier and affordable access to therapy has become even more important. Jenine Butroid, founder and CEO of Supporting Minds, thinks franchising could be the answer
The issue of mental health in our society has never been more prevalent. In 2020-21, out of 1.46 million people who were referred for psychological therapy, more than 800,000 of them either did not start or did not finish the treatment.
As more prominence is placed every day on the importance of keeping our mental health in order, new alternatives such as mental health franchises are now attempting to counteract the serious deficit in counselling and psychotherapy services. As the founder of Supporting Minds, a counselling franchise, here are five reasons why investing in a mental health franchise can change how people access therapy services for the better.
Owning a mental health franchise provides effective and affordable support to people who need help. It is becoming more and more difficult to face the complexities and challenges that occur in day-to-day life, so enabling people to take back control and improve their emotional wellbeing is a fantastic contribution to society.
Local communities are supported and strengthened by the supply of much-needed therapy services to those who want and need them. By investing in a franchise in your local community, you will be making a genuinely positive impact in an area that you are connected to and care about as you will be combining therapy services with therapist training to maximise your social impact. You will also be making a difference to hundreds of people as you will be providing them access to the therapy that they really need so they can go on and make real, lasting change in their lives.
Accessibility and affordability
With an ethos based around making therapy affordable, it then becomes more accessible to everyone. Most people cannot afford to pay in excess of £50 per weekly session, so having a business that can offer quality therapy at rates that people can afford, leads to a greater proportion of people being helped and supported.
I don’t buy into psychotherapy being an elitist field where only the rich and famous are worthy of having their problems talked through and worked out with them. There are too many people suffering in silence, particularly during the pandemic, and that is why I truly believe that counselling and psychotherapy should be available to everyone. I believe we are changing how we access therapy services for the better. Money should never be an obstacle to healing.
Time is of the essence
A study from the Royal College of Psychiatrists found that two-fifths of patients, who were waiting for mental health treatment, were forced to resort to emergency or crisis helplines.
It is clear that access to therapy needs to be made quicker; it takes incredible bravery for someone to ask for help, it is usually the last thing people do before they begin their road to recovery. If they are then told they have to wait before someone will listen to them, it can be crushing.
With the immediacy of the franchise service, it is a solution to the problem as there are more therapists available, which reduces waiting times, provides people with a personal experience and makes that vital connection occur much faster.
Making a difference
A recent analysis from the BBC revealed there has been a 77 per cent rise in the number of children needing specialist treatment for severe mental health problems. The number of teens and adults, who have been suffering from some form of mental health issue, has been going up in every survey since 1993. Sadly, the frequency of this problem is so widespread that no matter how many people you help, there will always be more looking for support.
Counselling and psychotherapy should be available to everyone, not just for resolving problems but also as a way of exploring who we are and encouraging individual responsibility and empowerment. Only by getting to the core of our being through self-exploration can real, lasting change occur. A mental health franchise, such as Supporting Minds, offers a range of professionally recognised training and counselling services that supports, empowers and values people across the UK.
No time limits
Therapy can be ongoing and have no time limit; instead of ‘completing a course’, it’s also completely adapted for an individual’s needs. Just because someone’s condition has improved, this does not mean they are shown the door. This course of action can often lead people to relapse with their anxiety or depression and can cause a reinstatement of their old problems. Counselling should be offered for as long as a person feels it is required, ensuring that when they feel they are ready to stop, their healing is complete.
Unfortunately, the pandemic has triggered a mental health crisis at a faster rate than we could have imagined. Thousands have and continue to suffer, and although there are some measures in place to try and make a difference, it’s simply not enough, and there are still hundreds of people who are struggling. Investing in a mental health franchise is a fantastic way of supporting local communities while making ethical therapies affordable and accessible to everyone. For a happy and healthy society, I’m hoping that counselling franchises can have a genuine and lasting impact.
Jenine Butroid is the founder and CEO of Supporting Minds, a counselling service providing a range of professionally recognised training and therapy services. Founded in 2014, Jenine set up the business with the sole purpose of making talking therapies accessible through a range of affordable, quality services.