Who we are
The Apple Tree Centre is a partnership owned by Rosie Dymond and Jenny Reid. We employ Associate Therapists on a sessional (contractor) basis to provide therapy. All records of this work are stored by the Apple Tree Centre, at 27 Brocco Bank, Sheffield S11 8RQ.
What information we store
During our referral process, we collect the following information about you:
- Full names of child, parents or carers, and other significant family members
- Date of birth
- Address, telephone numbers, and email addresses
- GP and school contact details
- Reasons for seeking counselling or therapy
- Family history
- Experiences of school, social interactions, and relevant medical information
- Support networks, strengths and interests
We also store brief records of therapy sessions and review meetings, including dates, times and a brief overview of content.
Why we store this information
The General Data Protection Regulations define specific legal bases for storing information. Several of these apply to the information which we store about our clients and their families:
- We ask clients and/or parents to consent to us storing and using this information
- We only store the information which we need to provide the therapy which you have asked us for
- In some cases, we need to use the information we have collected in order to protect vulnerable children and young people (Safeguarding)
How information is stored and used
The Apple Tree Centre keeps handwritten records. These are to help your therapist in their work with you. They also help us to check that we are offering a good service and that our work is effective. Your therapist will keep a brief written record of each session with you and keep copies of any letters sent or received in relation to our work.
An exception to this is that any letters you ask us to write to other professionals such as your School or GP are stored digitally in cloud-based password protected storage and accessed only by the Centre Directors and the Centre Manager using encrypted and password protected devices.
We also store a small amount of information in an online database which is secure and encrypted. This will be accessed for administrative purposes via password protected smartphones and laptops.
We store written records securely at the Apple Tree Centre, and individual records are not available off site. If therapists are working off-site, they will keep minimal records of this work, stored securely and identified only by a client number, and will return these to the main file as soon as possible.
We will securely dispose of all records five years after your therapy ends.
Your address, phone number, or e-mail address may be used to contact you in relation to your therapy. During the referral process, we will ask you to confirm the best ways to contact you, including whether to contact young people directly, parents or carers.
We will not usually tell anyone outside the Apple Tree Centre anything that happens in therapy unless the family explicitly asks for information to be shared.
Clients have the right to share whatever they like from their experience of therapy with anyone they choose. We encourage parents / carers not to ask children what they have done or talked about in therapy. We offer regular review meetings to parents / carers, and we will discuss these in advance with the child or young person and agree what information we will share.
All therapists receive professional, external supervision, which is also kept confidential.
There are some situations where we may pass on information without a client’s agreement. These are:
- When a therapist is concerned that a child, young person, or someone else would be at serious risk if we did not pass on information.
- When we have information relating to acts or potential acts of terrorism or money laundering, we are legally obliged to report this.
If at all possible, we will discuss our concerns with the client first and come to an agreement about what is best to do. We will tell the client what information we are going to share, and who we are going to tell. If the client is under 18, the therapist will also discuss the situation with parents / carers before sharing information, as long as it is safe to do so.
If a therapist does need to share information without the client’s or family’s consent, they will consult the Apple Tree Centre directors before taking action, unless waiting to do this would increase the risk. We will write down what information has been shared and why we breached confidentiality.
Access to records
You have the right to see records that are kept about you. If you would like to do this, please ask your therapist. They will explain anything in a record that is unclear. You have the right to correct any part of a record that you believe is wrong.
Information stored about children belongs to the child, and young people have the right to ask to see their own records. If younger children want to see their records, their parents can request this on their behalf. We then have a legal obligation to consider whether it is in the child’s interest to release this information to their parent.
Parents have the right to ask to see information which is stored about them, for example records of meetings where they were present.
Monitoring and evaluation
We evaluate all our work at the Apple Tree Centre, to ensure that all of the services we deliver are effective, to enable therapists to continue to grow and improve their practice, and to help us plan and develop our service.
We don’t want to ask clients to fill in lots of forms or take time out of your therapy sessions, so we have worked to develop what’s known as a holistic, heuristic system of monitoring and evaluation. This means that therapists may record your comments in relation to your experience of therapy and its effects. We will store this information anonymously and analyse it within the Apple Tree Centre, to ensure that there is no possibility of individual clients being identified.
Clients’ written and art work
We provide secure storage for art and craft work which clients produce during therapy sessions. At the end of therapy, you can decide whether to take your work home or whether you would prefer us to destroy it for you.
If we lose contact with a client before the planned end of their therapy, we will store artwork for up to three months, during which time you can arrange to come and collect it from the centre. After three months any work which has not been collected will be disposed of securely.