The 5 most affordable and free therapy services in Birmingham

Are you looking for an affordable therapy service? Feeling overwhelmed with where to begin and unable to decide the most suitable service for you? These feelings are completely normal. Here at RESET, we combined our more than 20 years of experience in Psychology and Psychotherapy services to select the 5 most affordable and free therapy services in Birmingham. Our goal is to provide you with as much information as possible to help you make the best choice for you, even if that means you eventually chose to work with a different company. This is why we have listed the 5 most affordable and free therapy services in Birmingham for you.

Find out if your workplace is having a negative impact on your mental health with our free quiz: Is your organisation offering a Psychologically Informed Environment – PIE?

Therapy is not only designed to address mental health disorders but also relationship difficulties, day-to-day life challenges, losing a loved one, and even if you want a sounding board, someone to listen to you! At RESET, we strongly believe that everyone deserves to be heard which is why we want to share everything we know with you.  There’s no denying that therapy can be expensive: According to a survey conducted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the most common reason people avoid mental health services is cost. However, do not feel disheartened as there are a few cost-effective options which may suit you! In this blog, we review the 5 most affordable and free therapy services in Birmingham. 

Living Well Consortium – FREE!

A charity providing mental health support for those based in Birmingham and Solihull. Living Well Consortium (LWC) consists of various mental health professionals from different organisations who work collaboratively to provide cost-effective community-based services. LWC aims to create sustainable change by encouraging individuals to find practical solutions to challenges, promoting individuals wellness, recovery and resilience. LWC provides therapy for the following mental health problems:

  • Depression and low mood
  • Anxiety
  • Panic and Phobias 
  • Stress
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
  • Health Anxiety
  • Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Anger
  • Low Self Esteem

Cost: Free!! Age group: Adults above the age of 18  Therapy format: Online courses, Counselling and self-help, Creative therapies, CBT Waiting time: 2-4 weeks Types of therapy offered:  

  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
  • Walking Therapy
  • Interpersonal Therapy
  • Dynamic Interpersonal Therapy
  • Couples counselling
  • Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing

You can go to your GP to be referred, or self-refer. 

Birmingham Healthy Minds – FREE!

An NHS psychological therapy service providing support for those experiencing symptoms of low mood, depression and/or anxiety. In the first instance, an assessment will be conducted in order to understand better what help you need. This can be done via the phone, face-to-face or you can complete a self-assessment form. Birmingham Healthy Minds even has walk-in locations where you can speak to a professional about any problems and learn more about the available therapy options. Age Group: 16 or over  Types of therapy offered: 

  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
  • Trauma-Focused CBT 
  • Eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing 
  • Mindfulness Group
  • Compassion Focused Therapy
  • Interpersonal Psychotherapy
  • Dynamic Interpersonal Therapy 

You need to be registered with a GP in Birmingham, you can self-refer or ask your GP. 

Birmingham Holistic Health Centre

Based in Kings Norton, Birmingham Holistic Health Centre “believe that the path to healing starts by feeling good”. The centre encourages individuals to look for natural health solutions to ensure optimal health and well-being. Holistic therapy addresses your mind, body, and spirit. If you are suffering with stress, chronic disease or want to make lifestyle changes, Birmingham Holistic Health Centre is the place for you!  Holistic therapy services offered:

  • Aromatherapy
  • Massage Therapy 
  • Reflexology 
  • Angelic Reiki 
  • Stress Management 
  • Hypnotherapy
  • Counselling
  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

“A sanctuary that facilitates healing. A place like no other!”

Birmingham Counselling Service 

Based in Birmingham City Centre (Digbeth and Jewellery Quarter), Birmingham Counselling Service (BSC) is made up of qualified Counsellors and Psychotherapists. BCS can help with building confidence, fighting depression, anger management and relationship issues.  Cost: Minimum £30 per session, Maximum £65 per session.  You are able to browse the available Counsellors and Psychotherapists here. Each professional charges different rates. “Most of the time we are able to offer you your first session within just a few days of your initial enquiry.” – Birmingham Counselling Service. If you want to avoid a waiting list (something you may experience with the free services listed above), BCS is an accessible, low-cost option considering the minimum fee.  Age group: Offers service to adults of all ages, and young people from the age of 4.  Therapy formats: One-to-one, couples and relationship counselling, group counselling, and anger management.  Session duration: Minimum: 50 minutes, Maximum: 100 minutes 

Before deciding on what service ask yourself what does affordability mean to you? 

The affordability of the services above is in relation to cost, but I would encourage you to also consider what affordability means to you! Ask yourself, how many times have you/would you need to go back to therapy? This would depend on the duration and type of therapy. For example, short-term CBT therapy may not be affordable if you have to go back multiple times as you are not addressing the root of the problem, therefore, you will end up spending even more money than intended. So, perhaps affordable for you means how effective the type of therapy is, and how many times if any you have to return. 

Some tips when trying to find an affordable therapy service 

  • You can ask your therapist if they ever work on a sliding scale. Sliding scale fees are a great option as this will be based on your income. Not all therapists offer a sliding scale fee, but it is worth asking to see if they can work with your budget! 
  • Confirm whether the initial consultation is free, it usually is! 
  • Ask about the potential duration of therapy so you can determine how feasible and costly the service is.
  • If you have health insurance, you can check whether mental health services are covered in your plan.
  • If you are employed, check whether your company provides/covers any therapy services.
  • Ask yourself, will I need to go back to therapy multiple times? This may help you to determine “affordability”.
  • You can also consider teletherapy/online therapy which allows you to speak to professionals via phone/laptop. If affordability for you means cost, teletherapy/online therapy allows you to connect with therapists outside your local area who may offer lower rates! 
  • Group therapy is also a cost-effective option if you are unable to find one-to-one therapy. Group therapy can feel intimidating, however, it is extremely beneficial to listen, support, share and relate to others’ experiences. Group therapy is a reminder that you are not alone!

Important information

The above services are some of the most affordable and reliable if you are looking for mental health support, however, if you are in crisis and require urgent support please contact:

  • NHS 111
  • Your GP 
  • Samaritans 116 123
  • Urgent mental health support, 24/7 – 0121 262 3555
  • In an emergency, you can dial 999 or attend your local A&E

The above options are extremely cost-effective, but keep in mind that there may be a waiting list for some of the free services. I encourage you to not shy away from therapy! As humans, we all experience challenges, lows and suffering at some point. You are not alone in your journey and you have the power to create long-lasting sustainable change, and therapy can support you with this. 

You might be interested in reading about the difference between a therapist and a counsellor.

If you are looking for private therapy, we offer accessible online packages starting at only £40 per week.

Saiyuri Naidu is an MSc Clinical Psychology Graduate and Senior Assistant Psychologist at the RESET Health Group.

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