Home >> About Us >> Our Team >> Counsellors-in-Training

Free Counselling by Counsellors in Trainees - Insightful Counselling Singapore

Free Counselling

“Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go; they merely determine where you start.” – Nido Qubein

Everyone deserves access to mental health support, regardless of their financial situation. At Insightful Counselling, we believe that cost should never be a barrier to receiving the care you need. Whether you are in Singapore or anywhere else in the world, our dedicated counselling interns or Counsellors – in – training, studying to complete their Master in Counselling, from top Australian universities like Monash University and Flinders University, are here to help you. We offer free virtual counselling sessions to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to benefit from professional mental health support from the comfort of their own home.

For those seeking in-person guidance, we also provide affordable face-to-face sessions every Sunday in our Singapore office for just $30. Other days can be discussed with your Counsellor -in – training. Explore how our services can support your mental well-being and help you navigate life’s challenges.

Why Choose Our Free Counselling Services by Qualified Interns - Insightful Counselling

Why Choose Our Free Counselling Services by Qualified Interns?

Our counselling interns are in the final stages of their training in counselling at prestigious Australian universities, such as Monash University and Flinders University. They provide free virtual counselling services to support your mental health needs.

  • A Listening Ear: Attentive and empathetic listening
  • Non-Judgemental Space: A safe and accepting environment to discuss your concerns
  • Professional Care: Compassionate and professional support tailored to your needs

In what language are the counselling sessions conducted in?

We provide interns who conduct sessions primarily in English. However, if you need another language, we will do our best to match you with an intern who may speak it.

What Makes Our Affordable Counselling in Singapore Unique?

We offer both virtual and face-to-face counselling sessions every Sunday in Singapore for just $30. These services are available to everyone, including foreigners and expatriates, not just Singaporeans or Permanent Residents. We also provide these services virtually to all parts of the world, if you can speak English. Led by skilled counselling interns, our sessions are designed to provide compassionate and professional support to all who need it.

  • Free Virtual Sessions to anyone need
  • $30 Sunday counselling sessions
  • Skilled interns from Monash University and Flinders University
  • Personalised and affordable therapy

How Can Our In-Training-Counsellors Support Your Mental Health?

Our in-training counsellors are equipped with the latest knowledge and techniques from their studies at either Monash University or Flinders University. They provide professional support to improve your mental well-being. With a genuine enthusiasm to do their best, they offer a non-judgemental and empathic platform for you to express your concerns. Additionally, they take regular supervision to ensure the highest quality of care and support.

  • Latest Knowledge: Equipped with contemporary counselling techniques
  • Enthusiastic Support: Passionate about providing the best care
  • Non-Judgemental Space: Safe and accepting environment
  • Regular Supervision: Continuous oversight to maintain high standards

What issues are supported by our Counsellor-in- Training?

We recommend availing to our intern counselling services if you would like to talk about your issues to them. Some issues that you may want to talk about can be:

  • Communication issues with family and friends
  • Marital issues
  • Issues with parents or children
  • Feeling depressed
  • Feeling lonely and wanting to talk to someone.
  • Relationship issues
  • Stress and anxiety over work
  • Wanting to learn more about how counselling works
  • Learning coping strategies for anxiety, stress etc.
  • Family counselling
  • Working with children/adolescents

To ensure your well-being and safety, for deeper issues we strongly recommend getting immediate help from a psychiatrist or an experienced counsellor. Some deeper issues that our intern may not be able to help you with may include:

  • Sex addiction
  • High Suicide Risk
  • Alcohol addiction
  • Current sexual abuse taking place
  • Substance abuse or drug addiction
  • Major Depressive Disorder
  • Psychosis or other deeper issues that may require professional or more experienced counsellors.

Who can avail to this service?

We encourage all those who need mental health counselling, and sometimes find cost to be a hindrance, to sign up for our counselling services by our interns. We provide services to most segments including LGBTQ. This service is provided in Singapore and internationally via virtual platform. In Singapore, we provide face to face counselling too.

  • Students (from 18 years and above)
  • Young Adults
  • Adults
  • Couples
  • Families

Why Are Sunday Counselling Sessions in person in Singapore Beneficial?

Many people are busy during weekdays with work and other commitments, making it difficult to find time for self-care. Sundays may be the perfect opportunity to focus on your mental well-being. If Sunday doesn’t work for you, please reach out to us, and we’ll do our best to accommodate you on another day.

  • Ideal for those with busy weekday schedules
  • Focus on self-care during the weekend
  • Flexible scheduling options available

What Can You Expect from Your Counselling Session?

During your counselling session, you can expect a safe and supportive environment where you can discuss your concerns. Our interns will provide professional and empathetic guidance.

– Safe and supportive environment

– Professional guidance from interns

– Open and empathetic communication

Book An Appointment

How Do Our Free Counselling Services Work?

Our free counselling services are provided by interns who are close to finishing their qualifications from Australian universities. They are available to help you navigate your mental health challenges.

  1. Fill in the Form: To take advantage of this service, please complete this google form.
  2. Review and Matching: We will review the form to ensure there are no risk-based issues such as major depression, suicidal ideation, or addictions. If deemed appropriate, we will connect you with an intern.
  3. Scheduling: Once a mutual timing has been arranged, we will send you a Zoom link for virtual sessions or the timings for face-to-face sessions.
  4. Ongoing Sessions: After your first session, all subsequent sessions are scheduled directly between you and your counselling intern via email. Please note, we do not provide WhatsApp support from our interns. For urgent support, you can contact us on our WhatsApp number: +65-83287060

Case Study: How Person-Centered Therapy Helped Sue-Ann Manage Her Anxiety


Sue-Ann, a 30-year-old woman, sought counselling to address her persistent anxiety. She felt overwhelmed by daily stressors and found it challenging to manage her emotions. Sue-Ann’s anxiety manifested in physical symptoms like a racing heart, restlessness, and difficulty concentrating, which affected her work and personal life. (Note: Sue-Ann is not her real name; it has been changed to protect her confidentiality.)

Initial Sessions:

Sue-Ann’s first sessions were focused on building a rapport with her counsellor, an intern trained in Person-Centered Therapy (PCT). The counsellor, under the supervision of Reena Goenka, provided a non-judgmental and empathetic space for Sue-Ann to share her experiences. The core principles of PCT—empathy, congruence, and unconditional positive regard—were pivotal in establishing a trusting therapeutic relationship.

Key Approaches in Person-Centered Therapy

  1. Empathy: The counsellor actively listened to Sue-Ann, reflecting her feelings and thoughts without judgment. This approach helped Sue-Ann feel understood and validated.
  2. Congruence: The counsellor maintained authenticity, sharing genuine reactions and creating a transparent environment. This honesty helped Sue-Ann trust the process and open up more.
  3. Unconditional Positive Regard: Sue-Ann experienced a supportive atmosphere where she felt accepted regardless of her struggles. This acceptance encouraged her to explore her anxiety without fear of criticism.

Progression and Realizations

As the sessions progressed, Sue-Ann began to notice patterns in her thoughts and behaviors contributing to her anxiety. Through the counsellor’s reflective listening, Sue-Ann realized that many of her anxious thoughts were linked to unrealistic expectations and self-imposed pressures.

– Identifying Triggers: By talking openly, Sue-Ann identified specific situations that triggered her anxiety, such as work deadlines and social interactions.

 – Challenging Negative Thoughts: The supportive environment allowed Sue-Ann to challenge her negative thought patterns. The counsellor’s empathy and validation helped her see that her feelings were valid, but not necessarily accurate reflections of reality.

– Developing Coping Strategies: Encouraged by the counsellor, Sue-Ann began to develop coping strategies, such as mindfulness and self-compassion exercises. These techniques helped her manage her anxiety more effectively.


By the end of the counselling sessions, Sue-Ann reported a significant reduction in her anxiety levels. She felt more empowered to handle stressors and had developed a better understanding of her emotional responses. The therapeutic relationship, characterized by empathy, genuineness, and acceptance, played a crucial role in her progress.

– Reduced Anxiety Symptoms: Sue-Ann’s physical symptoms of anxiety, like restlessness and a racing heart, diminished.

– Improved Self-Esteem: The unconditional positive regard from her counsellor boosted Sue-Ann’s self-esteem and confidence in managing her anxiety.

– Sustainable Coping Mechanisms: Sue-Ann left the sessions with practical strategies to continue managing her anxiety independently.


Sue-Ann’s case demonstrates the effectiveness of Person-Centered Therapy in addressing anxiety. Through empathetic listening and a supportive therapeutic relationship, she was able to understand and manage her anxiety better, leading to improved mental well-being.

This case highlights the potential of PCT, especially when facilitated by dedicated intern counsellors under skilled supervision, to create meaningful change in clients’ lives.

Certificate of Appreciation

Certificate of Appreciation - Insightful Counselling
Certificate of Appreciation 2024 - Insightful Counselling & Training Pte. LTD

Frequently Asked Questions

What types of issues can the counselling interns handle?

Our counselling interns are being trained and are equipped to handle a variety of mental health concerns, but they are not yet qualified to manage more complex issues such as severe depression, suicidal ideations, sexual related issues or addictions. For such concerns, we recommend seeking help from a licensed and experienced mental health professional.

– Suitable for general mental health support

– Not equipped to handle severe depression or suicidal ideations

– Complex issues like addictions require experienced professionals

What types of therapy do the counselling interns usually use?

Our counselling interns typically use Person-Centered Therapy and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). Person-Centered Therapy focuses on being genuine, providing a listening ear, and maintaining a non-judgmental attitude. CBT helps clients identify and change negative thought patterns and behaviours.

– Person-Centered Therapy: Genuine, empathetic, and non-judgmental support

– Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT): Techniques to change negative thought patterns and behaviours

– Tailored approaches to meet individual needs

Will I stay with the same intern for the whole of my counselling journey?

The answer depends on the length of your counselling journey. Typically, an intern works with us for 6 to 9 months. If you have not completed your counselling goals or require further therapy after this period, we will recommend transferring you to another intern. We will handle the transfer process for you. With your permission, we can share your counselling notes with the new intern to ensure continuity of care. Alternatively, you can choose to start fresh with the new intern.

Why is a listening ear important in counselling?

A listening ear is crucial in counselling because it helps clients feel heard, understood, and valued. This empathetic approach fosters a safe and supportive environment where clients can openly share their thoughts and feelings without fear of judgement. It also aids in building a trusting therapeutic relationship, which is essential for effective counselling.

– Validation: Helps clients feel acknowledged and respected

– Safety: Creates a safe space for open and honest communication

– Trust: Builds a strong therapeutic relationship

– Insight: Allows the counsellor to understand the client’s perspective fully

What can I expect in my first counselling session?

In your first counselling session, you’ll discuss your reasons for seeking counselling, your background, and any specific issues you want to address. This session helps the counsellor-in-training understand your needs and establish a plan for future sessions.

– Initial assessment and discussion

– Establishing a therapeutic plan

– Understanding your background and concerns

How long is each counselling session?

Each counselling session typically lasts 50-60 minutes, whether it’s a free virtual session or a $30 face-to-face session on Sundays.

– Standard session length: 50-60 minutes

– Consistent duration for both virtual and face-to-face sessions

Are the counselling interns supervised?

Yes, all our counselling interns are supervised by Reena Goenka, an experienced counsellor and supervisor. She is a registered counsellor and registered supervisor with the Singapore Association of Counselling and a Master Clinical Member. Reena’s role as a supervisor is to support our interns in adhering to ethical guidelines and facilitating client sessions, ensuring that each client’s journey towards their counselling goals is effectively guided.

Can I switch intern counsellors if I feel it's not a good fit?

Absolutely. It’s important to feel comfortable with your intern counsellor. If you feel it’s not a good fit, you can request to switch to another intern. However, we can only give you a replacement, if there is an available intern counsellor.

How is confidentiality maintained in counselling sessions?

Confidentiality is a fundamental aspect of our counselling services, ensuring that all information shared during sessions is kept private and secure. Here’s how we maintain confidentiality:

  • Professional Standards: All our counselling interns adhere to strict ethical guidelines and professional standards, including those set by the Singapore Association of Counselling.
  • Secure Communication: We use secure platforms for virtual sessions and ensure that all client records are stored securely.
  • Supervisor Oversight: Under the supervision of Reena Goenka, our interns are trained to uphold the highest standards of confidentiality and privacy.
  • Limited Access: Only the counsellor, Insightful Counselling and their supervisor have access to your information, which is not shared without your explicit consent.
  • Exceptions: Confidentiality may only be broken in situations where there is a risk of harm to the client or others, or if required by law. In such cases, clients will be informed whenever possible.


I would highly recommend Melissa as a therapist . Throughout my sessions, she demonstrated incredible patience and truly listened to everything I had to say. Her empathetic approach and genuine concern made me feel heard and understood in ways I had never experienced before. I have noticed profound changes in how I set boundaries, relate to others, and perceive myself. Her support has been pivotal in my self discovery journey. I am immensely grateful for the positive changes she has helped me achieve. If you are seeking a compassionate and skilled therapist, look no further!

I have had the privilege of doing my sessions with my therapist Manali. She was very attentive to my sharing, catching the nuances that shaped the way I think. Her perceptive observations and suggestions are what I needed to make sense of my deep inner workings. I went to her to overcome certain obstructions in personal growth and decision making, and I would say in the handful of sessions I've had, I could gain a significant clarity on who I am and what the underlying issues are. Manali is a guiding light of a honest and purposeful heart and I would recommend anyone who is looking for a therapist to give her a try.

It was very good experience with Manali I had very great time with her.

I am highly recomeded Manali Pattnaik and this is my honest feedback:

We been contacting since Nov 2023. It was really great experience and I appreciate her effort helping me to overcome my anxiety. My anxiety becoming less and less from scale of 8 now to scale of 2. It was so amazing. I can drive and go out become myself even not 100%. The best part is, I could share the knowledge from her to my friends and who need it. I have no words to say and thanks to Insightful Counselling for this program. Thank you Manali Pattnaik for your advise and your skill. Also you never gave up on me to tell me its just my shadow 🙂

I had my sessions with Adrian when I first had trouble with myself and my relationship. He made me understand myself better and really opened up my eyes to ways I could make things better for myself. He was always patient and spoke in such a soft tone which made our sessions feel so calm. I highly recommend giving Insightful Counselling a shot if you're looking for help.

Manali ma'am helped me a lot throughout... listening to me very patiently and understanding my pov.. giving me confidence and strength to deal things in a very smart way..thank you for helping me through ma'am

I love the fact that Manali listens actively rather than giving advice during our sessions. Her sense of empathy and understanding is a thumbs up. I also like the fact that she is not judgmental during our sessions. I wish for Manali all the best in her future endeavours.

Personally, Manali was really an amazing therapist for me as she was able to understand my thoughts and open my mind to different perspectives, which brought a sense of peace for me. An empathetic yet straightforward therapist that was lovely throughout my journey 🙂

I had the pleasure to work with Ms Manali Pattnaik for therapy. Ms Manali's ability to listen attentively and empathize with my emotions created a safe and non-judgmental space where I felt free to explore my thoughts and feelings without reservation. She also provided me with very targeted and specific methods to navigate my emotions based on my experiences and what I was comfortable with doing. I am truly grateful for the positive impact Ms Manali has had on my life!

Had the privilege of working with Adrian as my assigned counselor. With his extensive knowledge and experience, he has helped me so much through my personal issues. Very professional yet warm and easy to talk to. Thank you, Adrian!

I have done my counselling sessions with Manali Pattnaik and it's something I would cherish and remember. She's always on time and always present during the session. The sessions have greatly helped me to see through within me. It guided me greatly with my personal learning and healing journey.

I was referred to online sessions with Adrian by a friend, and in just a few sessions he was able to really help with concerns I had about myself. It was amazing working with him, and he was friendly, open and easy to talk to, which was very important for me. I've seen real improvements in my life working with him and it's helped a lot 🙂

Sonal has really helped me overcome 80% of my anxiety in less than 2 months simply by speaking to me and diving deep into smaller aspects of my life. The best thing about my sessions are that my feelings and thoughts are quantified and with each session, we measure an improvement. In addition to the above, a lot of emotional instances I’m feeling are backed up with theoretical knowledge and examples which I normally remember while making a lot of decisions in life. Overall, very happy with the help - a lot of time and energy is taken out which is commendable!

I am incredibly grateful for the support and guidance I've received from Manali. Her expertise and compassionate approach have made a significant positive impact on my life. I highly recommend her to anyone seeking a dedicated and effective therapist. Thank you, Manali, for helping me navigate through challenging times with understanding and skill. I have learned a lot throughout my journey with her. I have been to therapy throughout the years but none has impacted as much Manali has ❤️

Honest, clear, accurate ‘diagnosis’ of my feelings and emotions. Helps me to understand my feelings and my trigger points. Guides me on how to regulate them. Gives me an outlet to vent. My panic attacks have reduced and my mental health seems to be getting better.

I like that they are flexible and up to me how often I need them. Nisha has helped me to see a different perspective and be more positive in my lookout of myself. I’m satisfied with her care.

Listens very well, breaks down my problem faced in terms which helps me to better understand myself and what I am facing with. Gives me new perspectives in what I am facing instead of seeing it in a narrow point of view. I better understand what I’m dealing with, where I can focus my attention onto to make things work in my relationship. She’s a great listener, takes her time to understand what her client is facing and from there, slowly breaks it down for the client to understand what she has inferred from the session. Very beneficial and helpful, also willing to accompany for weekend sessions which is great for working adults.

She’s been very understanding just gives advice about all areas of life and the sessions just calm me down in general, also flexible about the timings! A place where I can openly just say what’s on my mind.

Manage to practice some techniques when having episodes. The approach of the therapist in charge.

This is my first time chance upon attending a 1-1 counselling session. I told myself to attend with an open mind. For me, my weakness lies in procrastination and I “feel” too long to get things done. Through Celine’s counselling and her sharing of thoughts by hearing me, understanding me, understand situations from another angle, I do have improvements in my line of work. Thank you Celine for your time, patience, guidance and a helping heart, improving people’s life.

I have had the pleasure of counseling with Tan, a student of the school at insightful counseling. Though a counsellor in training, Tan is attentive to my needs and is genuinely interested in hearing about my story in order to better understand my issues and how he can put his best foot forward to help me work towards my (counseling) goals about. what I like about our counseling sessions is that while Tan is a good listener , he is not afraid to delve deep and challenge my perspective( in a positive way) to see my issues on a different light. I would highly recommend Tan for your counseling needs as, in my humble opinion, he has the maturity and aptitude beyond what I expect a counsellor in-training to have.

Lily is an insightful and patient counsellor. Patient enough to listen to my troubles and not judge. Counselling by and large is not instantaneous, it really helps when professionals have the will to tough it out, and intervene at the right time.

I needed an outlet and someone who understands and does not judge me
Piriya mam has helped a lot.
She sees things from my side and helps aot and always adjusts timings and schedules and does not get irritated by my last minute plans
I am always eager to meet her as i am able to let out my feelings and cr freely
She is an amazing person

First of all, I want to thanks Insightful because give me this opportunity to get to know you as a counselling centre.

To my counsellor Eve Martin, no words can describe how grateful I am to meet people like you. You not only helping me in our session but also keep in touch with me when I need your guidance.

For now I already go thru 8 session with you. What I can say for this 8 session my scale of anger decrease day by day, now I already have a good relationship with my mom as I told you in our first session I don't have a good relationship with my mom but with your guidance for the first time for this year Hari Raya celebration I'm brave enough to hug and say I love you to my mom which I never expect I can do that action since I feel unsafe when I arrived at my hometown which is Sabah.

For now, I also feel excited with my work environment since I can handle the responses that I received from my friends. Less stress I think 🤣😜 you know how struggle I am with my workplace before this but after go thru the session and discuss with you to identify what wrong with my workplace now I'm proud to announce that I feel so happy and excited with my environment.

One thing that I never want to forget about our session when we discuss about the rollercoaster mood 😂 I will remember this for entire my life for sure.

Can't wait to continue our next session 😍♥️

I wish you all the best for your study and your career. Please pray for me too, I hope my dream to be a counsellor will be accomplished one day 😍

I enjoyed every session with Shantha.

The fact that she always created a nonjudgemental space made me feel heard and safe to express how I felt. She is a very patient good listener.

I am happy that she shared several techniques I could try to apply in my daily life to cope with my anxiety. She also took the initiative to talk about things when my mind when blank and I didn't even know how I felt and what to share. She respected the boundaries when I didn't think I was able to talk about issue in my past life that I was not comfortable to talk about yet.

Shantha's counselling sessions have been immensely beneficial and insightful for me. Her attentive listening, skill in creating a comfortable atmosphere, and thought-provoking approach have made a positive impact on my self-discovery and personal growth. 

I would like to thank you because of assigning a counsellor for me. She is so helpful and passionate and I feel so much better than before as she is trying to help me dig the problem from its root with her great level of knowledge and understanding. One more time I could laugh and smile while enjoying my me time to think about future from different aspects which is amazing. 
Although so much regret to hear that she will not be available from next month onward which is my main concern now. As I wish if I could have this pleasure to work further with her until she ,full recovery from this deep hopefulness, fear and depression.
One more time I appreciate your kind support and wish you both the best of luck and success. 

She is a patient counsellor who takes time to listen to her client's needs and also provides insightful perspectives and solutions to their circumstances.

I am incredibly grateful for the support and guidance I've received from Shantha. She creates a warm and welcoming environment where I feel safe to express myself. Her expertise and compassionate nature have been instrumental in my healing process. Highly recommended!

My sessions with the counsellor were beneficial. Initially, I was slightly sceptical as part of my issue is that I am often more guarded with female figures due to my upbringing. What I appreciate the most in the sessions is that I can do it at my own pace and not feel calculative about my choice of words, as the session felt like a safe space.
The biggest help overall is that the counsellor was able to make the sessions feel really present, insightful and thoughtful as opposed to them feeling like a structured interview or just a list of commonly asked questions/phrase, which I often hear from other people's experiences.

Book An Appointment