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Humanitas Counselling Course South Africa

Learn. Grow. Prosper.
Graciously learning to serve

Who can attend this course

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This course is especially beneficial for psychology honours graduates who, either want to gain practical experience before applying for their masters in psychology or those who have not been accepted for masters yet. 

This course is not exclusively for those in the psychology field, other eligible candidates for this training are:

  • Any individual who wants experience in counselling, in order to optimise their functioning on a personal, professional or developmental level
  • Individuals who have completed their studies and looking to enter the workfield.
  • Qualified BA or BSocialScience Honors degree
  • BCur nursing students and qualified nurses
  • Lay/Pastoral Counsellors
  • Qualified and/or intern registered counsellors
  • Caregivers
  • Teachers
  • Human Resource Managers that require exposure to developing and implementing Employee Wellness Programs in their organisations

course detail

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Serene Health in partnership with the Vita Nova Counselling Centre, presents a course dedicated to assisting individuals to enter the work field on completion of this training. The Humanitas counselling course is aimed at a wide variety of individuals who would like to obtain their goal of working with people in a counselling related manner. Whether you are a teacher, a pastor, healthcare provider, social worker or a psychology graduate looking to start your own practise, this course is for you. Absolutely anyone can attend this course in order to obtain theoretical as well as practical experience in the field of counselling.

Although ANYONE can attend this training course, not everyone will be able to register with the CCSA (Council for Counsellors of South Africa) or the ASCHP (association of supportive counsellors and holistic practitioners). We will assist those of you who qualify for registration to do so. To find out if you will qualify for registration with one of these boards, please visit their respective websites to obtain the latest information and requirements to do so.

Under the supervision of Nalinee Rughoo, an HPCSA registered Clinical psychologist; students attending this training course will not only gain theoretical knowledge; in the field of counselling, but will also gain invaluable practical training. We have acquired placements for practical experience at Hospice; our training course offers 320 hours of practical experience under Nalinee’s supervision. Weekly group sessions will allow for additional support, interaction and discussions with your fellow students, giving you the opportunity to learn more from one another as well.

Anri van den Berg owner and founder of the Vita Nova Counselling Centre has over 8-year experience counselling couples, parents and individuals and running her practise successfully. Anri has featured in numerous publications, on tv- and radio interviews and will be sharing her knowledge and experience on all aspects of running a successful practise, as well as some basics on counselling couples.

This course consists of the following:

  • 3 consecutive weeks of theory covering the topics below
  • 40 hours practical experience under supervision during the 3 week training
  • 260 additional hours of practicals to be booked on your own time
  • Group sessions

The training introduces individuals to:

  • Ethical behaviour when conducting yourself as a formal or informal counsellor, as per HPCSA guidelines and etiquette
  • Introduction to basic counselling skills
  • Introduction to capturing information and record keeping
  • Importance of confidentiality and informed consent
  • Scope of practice for different type of counsellors
  • Basic support counselling techniques to contain, assess and refer clients appropriately
  • Marriage and relationship counselling skills
  • How to start and run a successful practise
  • Completion of 320 hours of supervised practical work (individual, group, EWP)

The completion of this training course will lead to competence in the following areas:

  • Confidence in designing and implementing strategies for Employee Wellness Programs (EWP) in any type of organisation. EWP is becoming an integral component of many organisations. Management is realizing the importance of employee health and productivity. It explores the relationship between psychological functioning and impact on organisations. The implementation of such programs is an indication that organisations are becoming more aware of the fact that; in order for employees to be able to function efficiently and optimally, they need a supportive environment. This also creates responsibility within employees and employers. The implementation of such EWP programs allows for feedback mechanisms to enhance optimal productivity in organisations. 
  • Individual, couple and group supportive counselling will enable you to assess an individual’s level of functioning and competence and refer appropriately for further intervention.
  • Facilitation of group processes will enable you to create support within communities and groups of individuals experiencing similar interpersonal and intrapersonal conflicts. 
  • You will also be exposed to appropriately containing traumatic and bereavement situations until further intervention can be arranged.

In rural and urban communities, lay/pastoral counsellors are often the first contact for intervention when people become overwhelmed and despondent. Skills development in counselling enables you to become more aware, competent and relevant to your community (hospital, personal, professional, organisational, religious and educational settings).

what can I do with this qualification

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  • You will be competent to do EWP presentations
  • Competently counsel as a lay counselor
  • Be able to do critical incident debriefing
  • Facilitate support groups for people experience life challenges like grief and bereavement
  • If registered with the C4CSA, or ASCHP you will be able to open up your own practise
  • Psychology honours graduates will be able to apply for masters in psychology with 320 hours of practical experience

Please note that completion of this course does not lead to any registration with the HPCSA.

Course Duration

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The Humanitas training program consists of 3 weeks of full time classes and thereafter 260 hours of practicals conducted at your own pace. A breakdown of your practicals will be provided by Nalinee, to help you achieve the necessary hours.The course will need to be completed within 3 months, due to limited internship places; this means that this course will be a full time training course. Currently we will only be able to train, supervise and arrange placements for 20 students per month. The aim is to promote a comprehensive understanding of skills development in a holistic environment.

Course outline Week 1 - 3

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THEORY (Monday to Friday, 8:30-12:30)
  • Introduction to Counseling
  • Scope of Practice of Counselors\Lay\Pastoral\Supportive
  • Ethics and Record keeping
  • Confidentiality & Informed Consent
  • Exploring Secondary Trauma


THEORY (Monday to Friday, 8:30-12:30) AND PRACTICALS (Monday to Friday, 13:00-16:00)
  • Biographical interview and history taking (factual information gathering)
  • Process Models – Therapeutic Behaviour (verbal, non-verbal)
  • Counseling models for trauma (narrative, client-centered)
  • Employee Wellness Presentations and implementations/Team building exercises
  • Group supervision/facilitation and individual supervision


THEORY (Monday to Friday, 8:30-12:30) and PRACTICALS (Monday to Friday, 13:00-16:00)
  • How to run your practice successfully - Read more
  • Basic counselling for couples

Supervision - Week 4 to completion

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After completion of the initial 3 weeks of the training course, (which makes up over 40 of the practical hours a student needs to log; in order to successfully complete this training course), students would need to complete an additional 260 hours of practical exposure to individual supportive counseling, employee wellness presentations and team building exercises. This must be completed over the following 2 months of the program. There will be no classes during this period, except for the mandatory Monday afternoon group sessions. This allows time for students to do their practicals. All group sessions and practicals where Nalinee is present, will count towards your mandatory 320 hours.

We can arrange placements for practicals or students can arrange their own practicals at various institutions of their own choosing, however the institution needs to be approved by the clinical psychologist. Students would then meet for group supervision and individual supervision with Nalinee every Monday between 13h00 and 16:00 for the duration of the course. Students need to keep a logbook of number of hours completed. 

The placement of students would be determined during the course of the tutorials and dependant on availability of students.

Nalinee rughoo

Nalinee Debba

Verulam, a small farming town on the North-Coast of Kwa-Zulu Natal, South Africa, is where it all began. As a young girl I was always fascinated by books, any type of books. I reveled in them and marveled at the beauty of words and mystical places. Growing up in the 1970’s and 1980’s, I was fortunate to be exposed to education and reading by my parents. Especially my dad, who would tuck me under his arms every night and made me, read an excerpt from the Daily News. This ritual developed an unfathomable bond between a father and daughter. This bond fuelled my love for knowledge and spurred me on to investigate a career in Psychology. Always fascinated in the brain, human body and understanding how the mechanisms of the mind, body and soul gelled together, I was intrigued to pursue a degree in Psychology. 

After many years of trials and tribulations, no formal experience or exposure to counseling or therapy and watching my parents provide guidance, advice and support to individuals, couples and families enamored me. Formal information of psychology was limited and basic at best, I was unable to understand this passion burning within me. I needed something to support my belief in the holistic understanding and functioning of people. Call it fate or destiny, but my eyes locked onto an advertisement in the Daily News paper, on the far right hand corner, in miniscule print regarding Applied Psychology being offered through a University in Southern Queensland. I was now intrigued, with the assistance of my late brother we contacted the number and the journey into psychology began. On completion of the undergraduate degree, I realized there were no opportunities for me, so I started counseling at the Verulam Child and Family Welfare Centre as a volunteer. I realized I now needed to complete my Honors degree in Psychology, which I did through the University of South Africa. The trials began; I could do nothing with this as I needed to get into a Master Program. My now late dad’s words echoed in my ears, “Try and Fail but Don’t Fail to Try”, this was all the motivation I required to succeed. I did not get selected into the Master’s program on my first attempt, I was not deterred by this devastating blow. I started enquiring about other options and literally stumbled onto the registered counselor category offered by the HPCSA. I was fortunate to be accepted by Hospivision to complete the 6- month internship program and during that time I was also accepted into the Masters program for Clinical Psychology. 

As an Independent Clinical Psychologist, I have realized that like every other profession, we require counselors to assist us, especially trained counselors. I have a passion for teaching and supervising people interested in developing their counseling skills as I believe that their skills are invaluable and already walked this difficult path, I want to provide some level of expertise and hope to people to continue with developing their counseling skills. These skills are priceless in personal, professional and organizational development and growth and I want to ensure that we don’t lose good counselors because of the stringent selection criteria set out by the Universities and professional bodies. This is my dream and passion to spread knowledge and DO NO HARM. 


“Service to Man is Service to God” Swami Vivekananda

Anri van den Berg

Anri van den Berg

“In 2005, I completed my Honours degree in Psychology at the University of Pretoria. There after I had my own Nursery school in Pretoria East for two years, which I enjoyed very much, but closed down after the birth of my daughter in 2007. I successfully completed the Helios course for Counsellors and am currently registered with the Council for Counsellors

I started Vita Nova in November of 2011; ran it from my living room at home; dropping my kids off at family members whenever I had sessions booked.
I had a very clear vision of growing Vita Nova from a one woman show to a full-blown family counselling centre and training facility and with a lot of grace, blessings and buckets full of patience; managed just that. 

Fast forward a mere 3 years and a couple of months and Vita Nova had managed to acquire the facilities needed to house a multi-disciplinary team of 6 professionals; including a Play Therapist, Forensic Social Worker, Clinical Psychologist, Educational Psychologist, Family Therapist and myself. I was very definitely well on my way to achieving exactly what I envisioned for Vita Nova. Although the centre was ticking most of the boxes om my vision list, it wasn’t working for me; so I had to take a step back, reassess the situation, look at and understand all the available options, and I had to change my route. It was very tough for me to make the decision to change my course. My vision was an actual reality…but the business model that we were using didn’t make it a profitable one and the strain that managing 5 other people’s admin and client bases took on me was just not expected and therefore not accounted for.
Not for one moment am I regretting the multi-disciplinary-team-route I took – it has resulted in immense personal growth and the lessons I learnt, will benefit me forever. 

Up until February 2018, I was the only counsellor in the centre; renting out the additional office space I have, and for me, this was and is working well. In February I approached Heske Sangster, a social worker; and she is currently working as Vita Nova’s child therapist, specializing in forensics. In November 2018 I approached Anschel Pieterson, another social worker, and she happily joined our team as Vita Nova's play therapist. Our team might be small, but we are hugely passionate about the work that we are doing and the live we are touching. Meanwhile, I am using the extra time on my hands to really do some soul searching, planning and personal professional development. 

Throughout the last 7 years, I have had multiple TV interviews, regular radio slots and am often asked to contribute articles to various magazines and newspapers, such as Vrouekeur, The Oprah Magazine, Sarie, The Times, Intiem, Baba en Kleuter, Bella and many more. I have been invited on several occasions to come and talk on various topics at business functions and or charity events. 

Vita Nova has become one of the primary counselling presences on line through-out its now; very nearly 8 years of existence; even converting clients as far as 400km away. 

I understand what it entails to start a business from the ground up, I have experienced the absolute despair when things don’t go as planned and I have had to make very difficult decisions in order to make my practice a successful one. But more importantly I have learnt how to convert clients through emails and phone conversations, how to perform the day to day administrative duties, and to keep head above water through it all. 

Thus far this has been a journey filled with challenges and setbacks, but through God’s grace and a lot of hard work we were able to persevere and utilize all the lessons learnt through out. 

This course is therefore also aimed at helping you to avoid some of the pitfalls and get some helpful and practical advice and information which will enable you to start your practice off with the best possible chances of success. 

"May your practice be a source of hope and inspiration to everyone who walks through your door.”

Kindest regards,
Anri van den Berg - owner and founder of the Vita Nova Counselling Centre

Present yourself and your practice confidently and professionally from day one.


To Enroll for THIS course

Enquiries: 082 727 9312 082 541 4357

Complete the ENROLLMENT FORM and email to

Course Information

R14 999

Course material
Certificate on successful completion

Limited to 20 enrollments per month. Secure your booking as soon as possible. 

The cost of this course for the 3 months is R 14999-00. Payment must be made in 3 installments. R4999 is payable with the ENROLLMENT FORM and the balance over the next 2 months. This fee includes registration, tuition and supervision. 

Please note that the accounts must be settled in order to receive your certificate and the final report from the clinical psychologist is provided.


2019: Humanitas Counselling and Training Course
March Starting 4 March
April Starting 1 April
Starting 6 May
June Starting 3 June
Starting 1 July
August Starting 5 August
September Starting 2 September
October Starting 7 October
November Starting 4 November
2020  Dates to follow

Please note: Course will contain a maximum of 20 students and a minimum of 5 students are required for the course to continue.


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Accommodation options close to Vita Nova:

Rest-A-While guest house (Walking distance):
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Swallow's rest guest house (Walking distance):
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