Girton Town Charity


GTC supports outreach services In Village

4 Aug 2015

Did you know that you can benefit from two services – Relate and Citizen’s Advice Bureau – right here in Girton? With funding from Girton Town Charity (GTC), both organisations deliver a range of services to Village residents, without them having to travel into the centre of Cambridge.

Relate Cambridge provides relationship counselling for anyone over 18 at its outpost at Cotton Hall every Wednesday from 3.00–6.30pm and also delivers family and children’s counselling at Girton Glebe School. 

Relationship counselling

Elaine Taylor, who is the designated counsellor in Girton and has worked for Relate Cambridge for 21 years says: “Our main form of counselling is to provide support for individuals and their partners or on their own – you do not have to be married or civil partnered to use our services. We can help if you are having difficulties and want to work them out, if you want to separate, or even if your relationship has ended.

“We also offer MOTs in Girton as one-off sessions which are designed to help build new life skills, focusing on such topics such as relationship skills, confidence building and managing conflict.

“The outpost at Girton is proving very popular. We have now been running for two years and clients appreciate getting to a city centre session without stressful traffic delays and the ease of parking at Girton.

“It is very rewarding to receive positive feedback such as: “The session was helpful and made me feel more positive about myself’ and ‘Relate is an excellent service and probably saved my marriage and my sanity’.

Help for children

Family and children’s counselling is available at Girton Glebe School on a Tuesday, where the ‘Be A Buddy Scheme’ is now running for a second year. This helps reception children settle into school life with the support of a buddy, trained in using relationship skills by the training team at Relate Cambridge.

Maria Halliley is Schools Counsellor for Relate Cambridge and has been working at the School for the last 12 months. She says: “The service has been well used and appreciated by the staff, parents and children over the last year.

“It is open to all members of a child’s family should they wish to see me. I also have telephone conversations with parents when needed.

“Despite children sometimes being absent due to illness or school trips, out of a possible 138 contracted sessions, amazingly, 144 sessions have been delivered.

“And our service is appreciated as this feedback from a parent shows. ‘My daughter was lucky to have the support of a Counsellor in Year 5, while she was going through some difficult friendship issues. It was really helpful having a supportive third party to talk with, who wasn't either a parent or teacher, and who could advise my daughter independently.’

Counselling sessions for individuals and couples are available from 3.00-6.30pm every Wednesday at Cotton Hall. For more information or to book an appointment, contact Relate Cambridge on 01223 357424. More information is available on

Citizens Advice Bureau

Cambridge & District CAB’s outreach advice service is open to anyone, on Wednesdays between 1.00-4.00pm at Girton Community Centre in St Vincent Close.

There the Adviser Sheung offers free, impartial, non-judgemental and confidential advice in areas such as housing, employment, relationships and debt and has in-depth specialist knowledge on benefits.

The number of clients seen varies week to week – at the busiest times, six clients can be seen in one day. To ensure you get an appointment, it is best to arrive at 1.00pm.

The CAB service is clearly appreciated as this feedback shows: ‘The advice and support I was given was fantastic and so helpful. I appreciated the time I was given to talk through things and was not rushed’ and ‘It was very hard to ask for help but I was treated with great care, kindness and understanding. I should have done it years ago.’

During the last year, over 250 appointments were made with CAB’s Girton outreach service, helping residents with advice on a range of issues.

You can find out more about outreach services and get advice by visiting the CAB website:  Also, telephone advice is available on Monday to Friday between 2.00-4.00pm on 03448 487 979.