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Everyone’s healing journey is unique

Adult counselling at SACE focuses on developing emotional regulation and providing people with tools to support them with their healing. For some, counselling can be a valuable part of their process. Adults of all genders may attend up to:

15 no-fee individual counselling sessions
of clients felt their counsellor understood the impact sexual violence had on them
New adult clients in 2019

Preparation for Counselling

At SACE, our number one priority is client safety.

Questions asked during the Intake and Counselling processes are used to assess:

Clients safety
Identify existing supports
Ensure effective use of counselling
Ensure best outcomes for clients

SACE services are approached from a place of nonjudgement. Counselling can be destabilizing and due to the specialized, short-term nature of SACE counselling services it is not possible to address core impacts of sexual violence until a level of stability is attended to. It is important that before and during counselling, clients struggling with their mental health, disordered eating, addictions, housing or family instability, or active suicidality have additional supports in place.

Adults who have used sexually abusive behaviours are not able to access our services. This is for the safety and emotional wellbeing of our clients who attend the centre, and due to this pattern of behaviours requiring specialized supports that we do not offer. For information about services please contact 211, Alberta’s information and referral service.

We believe counselling should be empowering, and that people are the experts on their own experiences.

Our model for counselling helps clients to cope with the impacts of sexual violence, from feelings of anger, grief, and anxiety, to re-engaging with sexuality, relationships, and trust.

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Whether you are 18 or 90, experienced sexual violence recently or long ago, SACE services are available to you.

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SACE does not charge clients a fee for counselling services or for participation in groups.

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Clients of all backgrounds, genders, sexualities, and ages are treated with respect and dignity in a nonjudgmental and supportive environment.

Our trauma-centred, specialized adult counselling services are provided by professionals who have completed, or have nearly completed, a Master’s-level Counselling program, and the department operates under the parameters of the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) and the College of Alberta Psychologists (CAP).

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Canadian Psychological Association

Healing is Possible

At SACE we believe that healing is possible. Individual paths to healing vary greatly, with different stages along the way. During counselling, you are in charge of what you choose to incorporate into your own healing process. Your counsellor will work with you to determine what works best for you. There is no perfect or ideal way for someone to heal. Our counsellors understand that this process isn’t linear, and will support you where you are at.

Individual Counselling

SACE offers:

up to 15 weekly, one-hour sessions of counselling at no fee.

Prior to counselling, individuals on the waitlist have the option of attending Skills for Change.

Therapeutic approaches include:

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
Body Based Therapy – Hakomi, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Somatic Experiencing (SE), Movement Therapy
Feminist Therapy
Narrative Therapy
Expressive Art Therapy
  1. Call the SACE main office at 780.423.4102 to make an appointment with our Client Care Specialist
  2. The Client Care Specialist will phone you at the time of your appointment to complete the 30-minute phone intake
  3. After this conversation, you will be placed on the waitlist for counselling. The Client Care Specialist can provide options for support while you wait, including the Skills for Change psychoeducation group.
  4. The Client Care Specialist will contact you when a counsellor is available to schedule your first appointment

In the first session, your counsellor will:

  • discuss confidentiality, and obtain consent for counselling.
  • ask questions to build on your history obtained during the intake process
  • inquire about possible symptoms of stress and coping strategies.

Because SACE counselling prioritizes emotional safety, an important first step for the counselling process is gaining a sense of the individual’s goals for counselling. During this discussion, the first session, and the entirety of your counselling experience you are in control of what you speak about.

  • If an individual misses a counselling session without giving notice, or cancels a session within 24 hours of the session, the session will count towards the total number of sessions an individual is able to access.
  • If an individual is 15 minutes or more late for a session, this cancels the session and counts as one of their total number of sessions at SACE
  • SACE holds a zero tolerance policy regarding abuse towards staff. Threatening and disrespectful conduct will result in the immediate termination of services between SACE and the client

Resource Package

To prepare for counselling, SACE has created an adult counselling resource package that includes more information about what counselling is like, how trauma impacts the brain, and how to support your own healing.


Counselling at SACE is conducted in a confidential manner. Information related to counselling is only released to other professionals with a client’s written permission, with the exception of other counsellors at SACE, and the counsellor’s supervisor. No information, either written or verbal, gained during the counselling process will be used for the purposes of resolving child custody and access disputes. Client files are retained based on current College of Alberta Psychologists guidelines.

SACE adheres to the Alberta College of Social Workers (ACSW) and the Canadian Psychological Association Codes of Ethics.

Anything you say in a counselling or group session will be considered confidential with the exception of:

Information which leads us to perceive a child (under 18) or other vulnerable individual is at risk of physical, emotional, or sexual violence or neglect, as we are legally bound to report such concerns to authorities under Section 4 of the Child, Youth and Family Enhancement Act
Information which leads us to believe that you are in danger of harming yourself or others
Files subpoenaed during a court proceeding
Where otherwise required by law

When you start counselling at SACE, your counsellor will obtain your informed consent for counselling services and will further explain these limits to confidentiality.

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