The Use of spirituality in counselling practices with adolescents




Gulamhusein, Shemine Alnoor

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In this thesis, an exploration of the factors that prohibit and/or contribute to counsellors incorporating spiritual conversations in their practice with adolescent (10-15yrs) clients takes place. Through a narrative inquiry method participants from the University of Victoria in a masters level program in Child and Youth Care or Educational Psychology and Leadership Studies describe personal and professional reasons to support the inclusion or exclusion of spirituality in counselling practices with adolescents. Results indicated that practitioners’ personal experiences of grappling with spirituality and religion, professional policies outlining if a practitioner can or cannot converse with their client regarding spirituality, and the lack of educational training to incorporate spirituality for soon-to-be practitioners all strongly played into a practitioners’ reasoning to refrain from or engage in spiritual conversations with their clients. In order to move forward it is vital that practitioners begin to recognize that children and youth are spiritual beings, that educational programs within the helping professions include spiritual training, that practitioners are supported by supervisors when they feel that the inclusion of spiritual conversations is vital in their practice, and that organizational policies are adapted to allow practitioners the necessary time and space to engage in spiritual conversations with adolescent clients.



Adolescents, Counselling, Spirituality