CCC was first formed in Cambridgeshire in 1978 with a remit to provide counselling for adults who needed it but were unable to afford it and to train counsellors to professional standards. It came into being in response to a call to action by another charity, whose aim was to make counselling affordable and accessible to everyone. The founders felt that the charity should be characterised by mutuality – where clients could consult with qualified practitioners, members could consult with one another and trainees could consult with one another and with those who train and supervise them.
From the initial years of providing services in Cambridge, Peterborough and St Ives, CCC then expanded to include Ely, St Neots and the neighbouring communities in Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire and Hertfordshire.
By 1983 CCC’s distinctive features were established:
- A service that enables clients to access affordable counselling
- A community of professional counsellors sharing their experience and approaches
- A learning organisation dedicated to enabling individuals to develop their counselling expertise and practice to a common standard.
In 1995 CCC became an independent charity, was registered with the Charity Commission in 1996 and then became a Charitable Incorporated Organisation in 2019. Despite changes in legal status, the distinctive features have remained the same throughout the charity’s history.