STARS Dorset Volunteer Counselling Team wins Volunteer Group of the Year Award

Members of STARS Dorset Counselling Team with Her Majesty
Members of STARS Dorset Counselling Team with Her Majesty's Lord-Lieutenant of Dorset receiving their award at Volunteer Centre Dorset event

Sexual Trauma and Recovery Services (STARS Dorset) Counselling Team has won Volunteer Centre Dorset’s Volunteer Group of the Year. Counselling volunteers at STARS Dorset provide a vital service for survivors of sexual violence and childhood abuse across the county. The counselling service provides one to one trauma informed counselling, free of charge, for anyone who lives works or studies in Dorset and has experienced any form of sexual violence in their life.

STARS Dorset Volunteer Co-ordinator Simone Gosden said ‘’ We are delighted that our Counselling Volunteers have been recognised for the amazing work they do and won this accolade It would be impossible to deliver our Counselling Service if it was not for our  counselling volunteers dedication and generosity. This team unreservedly commits their time to ensure that our clients receive an exceptional service that is free and not time limited. As a client once told us ‘my counsellor didn’t save my life, she gave me my life’.

STARS Dorset have also recently achieved the Investing in Volunteers Quality Standard, recognising the excellent work they do with volunteers. Investing in Volunteers is the UK quality standard for all organisations involving volunteers. It aims to improve the quality of the volunteering experience for all volunteers and for organisations to acknowledge the enormous contribution made by volunteers. STARS Dorset was assessed against a range of best practice standards and proved to excel in all aspects of working with its volunteers.

STARS volunteers are essential to the work of the charity and they are always looking for men and women aged 18 or over to join their team and support them to help deliver a quality service to their clients. They offer induction training and on-going support for all their  volunteering roles. There are a number of different volunteering opportunities available and the charity are currently recruiting volunteers for Events and Fundraising, Helpline Listeners and Counsellors. If you would like any further information on any of their volunteering roles or to apply please contact Simone Gosden their Volunteer Co-ordinator on 01202 308848 or email

Anyone who has been affected by sexual violence and would like confidential advice and support can call the STARS Helpline on 01202 308855 or visit

For those wanting to access their counselling service they can either self-refer or ask a professional they already receive support from to refer on their behalf.



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