Information for clients

If you’re new to Gateway or have some questions about working with us, please take a look through this section. It’s aimed towards parents and carers, and hopefully will make the process as clear as possible.

Before your first appointment

Referrals to Gateway come from a variety of different sources. Your child or family might be referred to us by your Local Authority, or you might refer your child/family yourself. We do not operate a waiting list, however there might be times when we cannot accept new referrals.

If you are referred by your Local Authority or Regional Adoption Agency (RAA), the process can take a while. Your social worker will usually contact us for a quote first. We will then provide the quote, which needs to be approved by your social worker. They will then apply for funding, either to the Local Authority or the Adoption Support Fund. Funding approval can take up to 5 weeks. Once it has been approved, a purchase order will be raised and sent to us. We can then start working with you.

If you refer yourself or intend to self-fund, we will start case opening straight away.

Ah, paperwork. While it’s not the most exciting task, we do need to complete some paperwork before we can start work with you. If you were referred to us by your Local Authority or RAA, we will ask your social worker to fill out our Case Information Form. This gives us your contact details.

Once we have received your contact details, we will send you our Case Registration and Case Consent Forms. This is usually sent to you through a secure e-signature platform called Adobe Sign. We will also send you some other information about working with us. We may also ask you to fill out some questionnaires.

If you intend to self-fund, we’ll send you the Case Registration and Case Consent Forms once you have told us you wish to proceed.

We allow 6-8 weeks for our case opening process. We can only begin once we have received confirmation of funding from the company who is paying for the work. If you are self-funding, we will start case opening as soon as you tell us that you would like to proceed.

There is a lot of administrative steps we need to go through to open your case to us. We also need to allow time for the clinician to allocate space in their diary. We will try to get it all sorted as quickly as possible. If you have any questions about how things are going, please do get in touch with us.

Once your case is opened to your allocated clinician, they will book in an appointment with you.

Once we have received funding confirmation and all the paperwork, we can start working with you. Your allocated clinician will phone or email you to book in a first appointment. They will arrange the rest of the appointments for the piece of work with you directly.

After-school appointments are often in-demand, so we may not always be able to offer you your first choice of time. Your clinician will work with you to find a time that works for both of your schedules. Where required, we can provide your child’s school or college with a letter explaining they will need to take time out of school for their therapy or assessments. We can also produce a letter for your workplace if required.

We do not offer evening or weekend appointments. Our office hours are 9:00-17:00, Monday to Friday. The last available appointment each day is 16:00.

If you have any questions about where you are in the process, or you’re concerned about delays, please contact us and we’ll do our best to help. We may not be able to change the timescales, but we can point you in the right direction or provide additional information.

As a Gateway client

Your appointments will usually be held at the Gateway Psychology clinic. This is located in Stoke-on-Trent.

We don’t see clients at home or other venues. The Gateway clinic is purpose-built for the work we do, and provides a therapeutic space for you, your child and your family.

We may offer you virtual sessions where preferred or required by the piece of work. These will usually be facilitated using Zoom, although we can use Skype, Teams or Facetime as alternatives.

Your appointments will usually last for 1 hour, although this might be different depending on what is required by the piece of work.

Please let us know at least 24 hours in advance if you cannot attend a session. Cancellations within 24 hours of an appointment will still be charged.

If the work is funded by a Local Authority, Regional Adoption Agency or another organisation, late-notice cancellations or missed appointments will mean that you receive fewer sessions overall. It may seriously impact our ability to complete the work as commissioned (particularly for assessments).

If you cancel at late notice or miss appointments regularly, we may need to notify your social worker or the organisation funding the work.

We understand that things might happen between appointments that you wish to tell your clinician about. You are welcome to send them an email detailing your thoughts in between sessions, but please be aware that they cannot provide additional support outside of sessions (unless agreed in the contract). It’s usually best to discuss your situation in-depth in the session (this will be your or your child’s safe space).

You are also welcome to contact your clinician or the Gateway support team about admin-related queries wherever required.

Once we have completed a piece of work, we will produce some ‘end of work’ documentation. These can be different depending on the type of service you are receiving. For example:

  • At the end of an assessment, you will receive an in-depth assessment report with recommendations for further work.
  • At the end of therapy, you will likely receive a brief end of therapy report.
  • At the end of a consultation, you might receive a letter explaining recommendations or what was covered

If you have any questions about what happens next, please speak to your clinician. Please note that if your intervention/assessment is funded by the Local Authority or Regional Adoption Agency, a copy of your report will also be sent to your social worker.

Developing a strong working relationship with the parents and carers we see is really important to us. If you have any questions or concerns about the service you are receiving, please speak to your clinician or contact the Gateway business support team.

Giving consent to Gateway Psychology

Before we start working with you or your child, we will ask for your consent. Our Consent Forms ask you to give consent for us to undertake the piece of work. We will also ask for your consent for hosting virtual sessions or video recording your sessions as required. We will also ask for confirmation that you have read and understood the associated Explainer documents.

  • Young people 16 years and over need to provide consent for themselves.

  • We will ask for consent for each piece of work (even if you have accessed our services before).

  • We may ask for ad-hoc consent if the scope of the work changes.

  • If you have any questions, please get in touch with us or your clinician

  • You can withdraw consent at any time. But this might affect our ability to complete the work.

Video recording

Some of our work needs to be video recorded. Your clinician will use these for analysis purposes and to prepare for feedback sessions with you. Your video recordings will be stored in accordance with our Data Protection and Confidentiality Policy. We will ask your verbal and written consent before recording any sessions.

Can I view my video recordings?
Your clinician may share sections of the videos with you but will not give you a copy of the videos.

Will my videos be shared anywhere else?
Your clinician may share your videos confidentially with their supervisor. We will ask for your consent before doing this. We will not share your videos anywhere else unless required by law.

Outcome measures

Ofsted, Local Authorities and Regional Adoption Agencies require us to undertake outcome measures (plus, they’re a really helpful way for us to monitor the progress of your case). We will likely ask you to do some questionnaires at the start and end of a piece of work. Please fill these in as thoroughly as you can. Thank you!

Feedback and complaints

We regularly ask the parents and carers we work with for feedback about our services. Whether things are going well or not so well, we would value your input. You can fill out our parent/carer feedback form here, or email us your thoughts directly.

If you are experiencing a problem with Gateway, please let us know. We would like the opportunity to resolve the issue if possible. Whether you are unhappy about something we have done (or not done) or have any other difficulty, please get in touch with us.

You are also welcome to make a formal complaint. You can read our Complaints Policy (available for download to your left), or contact us to request an official Complaints Form. We are committed to investigating all complaints thoroughly and fairly. We will let you know the outcome of the investigation in a timely manner. Please note that our Complaints Policy is not just for parents and carers. Children and young people can make an official complaint too.

Helpful information about sessions at Gateway

We know it is not always easy to understand what your sessions will be like at Gateway, particularly if you have been referred for a particular type of therapeutic model or intervention. Our explainers are designed to provide some extra information before you come to see us. Sometimes, we will use a mix of therapeutic models to make sure we are helping you and your family in the best way possible. If you are seeing us for DDP and EMDR, for example, you may wish to download both Explainers.

Please feel free to download the relevant Explainer before your sessions (or during them!). If you are not sure what type of work you are accessing from us, you are welcome to contact our admin team for further clarification. We’re always happy to help.

When you come for your first appointment, your clinician will spend some time talking to you about the work we intend to do with you and your family. They will outline a plan for the work (like session frequency, length, etc), as well as answer any questions you might have.


You do not need a GP letter or special referral to access our services. Please contact us about your situation, providing as much detail as possible. We will get back to you with more information about working with us.

Please note that if you think your sessions will be funded by your Local Authority, Regional Adoption Agency or another organisation, you will likely need to speak with them first.

Therapeutic interventions and assessments may be accessible through your Local Authority or Regional Adoption Agency if you are an adoptive parent or special guardian. These are often funded under the Adoption and Special Guardianship Support Fund. You will need to speak with your post-adoption social worker to discuss this.

We are a registered Adoption Support Agency and regularly provide trauma-informed therapeutic interventions and complex psychological assessments. As such, we are inspected by Ofsted for our work with adoptive families.

Please contact us for our most up-to-date pricing structure.

We understand that it is not always possible to fund sessions yourself. Our fees reflect the many years’ experience and training our clinicians undertake to provide an expert and high-quality clinical service.

If you are an adoptive parent, special guardian or foster carer, you might be able to access our services through your Regional Adoption Agency or Local Authority. Please speak to your social worker to discuss this.

Some organisations, such as schools or charities, may help fund sessions with a clinical psychologist. It is best to speak to the organisation directly to find out if this is possible.

We occasionally work with insurance companies to provide sessions for children or young people. Please talk to your insurer to see if this would be a possibility.

We tailor our sessions to suit the specific needs of you and your child or young person. Your clinician will talk with you about the plan before we get started. Please browse our website for more detailed information about working with Gateway Psychology. You can also get in touch with us with any specific questions you might have.

Equality, accessibility and discrimination

We aim to provide a safe, welcoming and accepting service for all our clients. We do not tolerate discrimination based on age, gender, sexuality, race, identity, religion, disability or belief systems. Read more about our Equality and Accessibility promise.

About your sessions

We understand that delays can be really frustrating. For ASGSF or Local Authority cases, we are usually at the end of a lengthy process. Support assessments, funding agreements and financial documentation can take quite a while to sort out. From our side, we do our best to book in a first appointment as soon as possible after we receive your funding agreement. We don’t operate a waiting list.

We do have some paperwork that needs to be completed at the start of a case. The quicker you can get this over to us, the quicker we can begin working with you.

If you have any questions or concerns, please get in touch with us.

If you are accessing our services through your Regional Adoption Agency or Local Authority, we usually have to stick to the scope of work commissioned to us. We can change this in certain circumstances, but we will need to talk to your social worker first. Your social worker might have to apply to the funding stream for a ‘change of use’ agreement.

It’s usually best to talk to your social worker in the first instance, as they will be best placed to alleviate any concerns. Of course, you’re welcome to tell us about your concerns as well.

If you are self-funding your sessions, please talk to your clinician.

Most of the time, we undertake a piece of work with specific goals to achieve. The direction of the therapy will be planned to help meet those goals. We understand that changes might need to be made during the course of therapy, depending on your requirements. Please talk to your clinician or your social worker as applicable.

Sometimes, the best way to help a child or young person is to work with their parents or carers. We might not see the child or young person at all. Other times, we may see both (either at the same time, or in separate sessions). We might also see the child or young person on their own. It really depends on the goals of the work and the therapeutic approach. It’s best to talk to your clinician about how the therapy will take place.

We understand that parents and carers are likely to want updates on how their young person is doing. Depending on the young person’s age, we may provide some feedback. However, if a young person is over 16 years old, we will ask for their consent before sharing any information. We may also ask for permission if they are younger than 16 years old, depending on the circumstance.

Of course, we will always inform parents, carers or other services if we believe there is a safeguarding concern.