The Kōwhai Centre is open. For an appointment please complete our online referral form.
If you have already completed an online application, the Kōwhai Centre Manager or a student counsellor will contact you as soon as possible to organise an appointment for you.
If, in the meantime you would like to talk to a trained counsellor, please phone or text 1737.
In the case of an emergency, please phone EPS on 0800 467 846.
The Kōwhai Centre provides free counselling support to the community.
Student counsellors from the Bachelor of Social Services programme offer supportive counselling to members of the public in a training environment under NZAC supervision.
Students of the programme are in their second year of training, bringing with them theoretical knowledge, life experience, previous training and diversity. As a client of the Kōwhai Centre, you may be asked by your student counsellor for permission to record a client session. If this happens, you will not be visible on the recording – the camera will be focused on the counsellor.
Students are supported by lecturing staff and counsellors within the Dunedin community to provide free counselling that is professional, supportive and accessible.
Kōwhai Centre is open to the public. We accept donations and do not charge for services, although there is a late-cancellation fee of $10 if you cancel your appointment less than 24 hours before the scheduled time.
Making an appointment
If you would like to make an appointment, you can phone or email us, or complete the online form below. A referral can be made by another professional of any service, organisation or agency.
We cannot accept a referral made on behalf of a friend or family member without first speaking to the person who will receive the counselling.
The Kōwhai Centre Manager will contact you to find out more about your situation so we can offer you the best service possible. This will occur on our next opening day, which may not be until the next Wednesday, Thursday or Friday.
The Kōwhai Centre offers individual counselling sessions to people 17 years of age and older in a confidential and safe setting to explore, clarify or resolve life's challenges such as:
- Grief and loss
- Planning and goal setting
- Life changes
All students receive regular individual supervision by qualified members of a professional association such as New Zealand Association of Counsellors (NZAC).
Please note: The Kōwhai Centre service is not available to Otago Polytechnic students. Students can access counselling services through the Student Health Centre.
Please note: We do not offer couples counselling at the Kōwhai Centre
What you can expect
- Professional support
- Respectful, caring counsellors
- Comfortable, private setting
- A person-centred approach and other counselling models of practice
- NZAC supervised counselling.
Hours of service
Wednesday 3.00pm – 7.00pm
Thursday 11.00am – 7.00pm
Friday 9.00am – 3.00pm
Phone 03 479 6198
Please leave a message on the answering machine as we are only able to take calls within the hours of service. Alternatively, please email the Kōwhai Centre Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org
There is a carpark designated ‘Kōwhai Centre Clients’. This is carpark marked number 100 in the Staff Carpark area on St David Street. To find this park, head up St David Street from Harbour Terrace and enter the first driveway on your left. You will see the designated carpark to your left. (There is small board indicating the carpark.)
There are two carparks designated ‘Kōwhai Centre Clients; down the driveway behind the Kōwhai Centre at 153 St David Street. Drive down the driveway and the parks are available on your left. Please note that the driveway is narrow and one of the parks is only suitable for a very small manoeuverable car.
If none of these parks are available you can park in a visitor carpark outside D or F Blocks (indicated by VCP on the map below). If you park there, you need to display your appointment card on the dashboard.