THE number of men seeking professional help from counselling services is increasing.
This was the observation made by the manager of Empower Pacific's Counselling Centre at Lautoka Hospital, Vijayanti Karan.
"Before the opening of the centre, on average six men attended the men's program per month but the numbers are now heading towards 20 men attending," Ms Karan said.
"There is no doubt counselling can greatly help the individual client but in reality, this is only the start of the benefits of the counselling service. When people solve or control their problems, the benefit spreads throughout their family and community.
"Families are better fed and cared for, children attend school more regularly, communication within the household improves, and there is less violence in the home and in the community."
She said in general, more people attended counselling now because of the privacy of the sessions.
"This was demonstrated recently by a client who had previously used our service when clients still had to be interviewed behind curtains in the waiting room.
"This time, the client revealed a domestic violence issue, which she says she kept secret before because she didn't feel the waiting room was private enough to discuss her issue.
"There are now three health screening counsellors, seven general counsellors and two social workers working from the centre. The majority of services are provided at the centre but outreach programs also operate from the new centre."