Call: 0118 901 5668

Call: 0118 901 5668

Our Vision

Our vision is for a world that does not stigmatise young people’s mental health and accepts it as a normal part of human development.

Our vision is for a world that does not stigmatise children and young people’s mental health and accepts it as a normal part of human development.

Who we are

No5 has been supporting young people in Reading and the surrounding area since 1971. We are a community- based organisation with all counselling sessions provided by fully trained volunteer counsellors. There are currently 65 counsellors offering over 150 sessions, five days a week. Our volunteers come from all walks of life and backgrounds but all share a commitment to supporting children and young people.

Formally No5 is a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO) registered with the Charity Commission (No. 1171313).

Our Purpose, Vision, Outcomes and Values have all been developed in consultation with young people.


Values & Outcomes

Values young people tell us are important when using our services:

  • Trust
  • Responsibility
  • Confidentiality
  • Professional
  • Approachable
  • Understanding
  • Respect
  • Inclusivity
  • Equality

Outcomes they believe can be achieved through these values:

  • Wanting to live
  • Seeing a future in yourself
  • Optimistic point of view
  • Self-understanding
  • More positive outlook on life
  • Happiness
  • More trust in yourself
  • Self-acceptance

Our staff

Alyson Wylding


Hello, my name is Alyson Wylding and I’m the Director at No5. I am also a qualified psychotherapist and mum of 3 young people. I’ve been at No5 since January 2012 and feel very passionately about developing services to support young people that are responsive and flexible to their changing needs.

Helen Thompson

Training and Development Manager

I joined No5 as Clinical Manager in November 2014 following two years supervising two groups here.  My experiences of working with young people have been gained over the last 14 years, working with young people aged 14 to 25 in schools and colleges as a counsellor.

I also run a private practise at home, providing counselling and supervision and work as a group supervisor with another agency.

Martin Fox

Clinical Lead

I joined No5 in July 2017 and became clinical lead in April 2018. I qualified as a Counsellor in 2005 and a supervisor in 2013.

Prior to No5, I worked in palliative care for 12 years as a counsellor and coordinator, which was a privilege.

I am married and the father of 4 boys.

I am excited about working at No5 and the opportunity to develop the service further working with a strong team. An important part of my role is supporting our highly valued volunteer counsellors to carry out their roles, without whom we wouldn’t have a service.

David Edwards

Counselling Co-ordinator

Hello, my name is David, and I am a qualified psychotherapist. I have been working as the Counselling Co-ordinator for No5 since April 2018, following five years volunteering and working as a counsellor here, as well as supporting the agency in a clinical administration role.

I also work as a therapist for other agencies, as well as running a private practise in Wokingham and Reading seeing both young people and adults.

I am really happy to be a staff member at No5, which allows me the opportunity to support and help young people with their concerns and issues, a client group I feel strongly should have access to mental health services.

Carly Newman

Operations and Relationships Manager

After having counselling at No5 when I was 15, I was delighted to become a Young Ambassador and ‘give back’ to the organisation that had completely changed my life as well as share my story with other young people to show them that they weren’t alone and that “it is OK not to be OK”. I became Lead Young Ambassador in 2016, and after graduating from university, I joined the staff team here at No5!

Now my main focus is on building and maintaining our corporate and community partnerships, as well as fundraising. I also write and create some of our website content and social media posts.

It is an absolute honour to represent both No5 and young people in the community and to bring a young voice to the work we do here in order to help ensure we are reaching young people who need support and that we are providing the help that they need in the ways that are accessible to them.

Dushka Novakovic


I have worked for No5 since July 2017, having previously been involved with Time to Talk, Reading. My experiences of supporting young people by implementing the administrative, statistical and front-line mechanisms that sustain the counselling service go back many years. It is an absolute pleasure to be working for an organisation that is so dedicated to helping young people and believes in them, working tirelessly to engage with them and gives maximum respect to its staff.

Abbie Trussler

Projects Coordinator

Hello, my name is Abbie, and I am the Projects Coordinator at No5.

I attended counselling at No5 when I was 14 years old and 2 years later, I joined the Young Ambassador team after reconnecting with the charity through NCS. In 2018 I became the Lead Young Ambassador and continued to tell my story and experience with mental health and No5 as well as working alongside the other young ambassadors to raise awareness, fundraise and make understanding mental health less scary to young people.

In 2021 I was delighted to join the staff team as the Projects Coordinator to not only continue my relationship with the young ambassadors but to also dedicate more of my time and work to young people in the local community.

Jo Carr


Hello, my name is Jo and I joined No5 Young People in October 2019 in the role of Receptionist.  Prior to this I taught Food Technology in a local Special Needs School for 19 years.  When I left I still wanted to work with young people, so was excited to join the team. 

Emma Beesley

School Liaison Counsellor

Hi, I’m Emma and I’m a Counsellor specialising in working with Young People aged 11-25.  I believe strongly in the power of early listening interventions as a way to help young people change the direction of their futures. 

I’m a BACP Accredited Integrative Psychotherapist who’s been with No5 for 6 years.  Initially volunteering at No5 offices, and then moving to work as a Schools Counsellor in a number of local secondary schools. 

I’m currently working at a local secondary school two days a week.  Alongside that, I work as the No5 Schools Liaison Counsellor with the aim of delivering a whole-school approach in partnership with Secondary Schools in the Berkshire West area.


Our Trustees

Ben McEwen


I have been a proud Trustee of No5 since January 2014 and took on the role of Chair in 2016. My background is in hospitality and my work experience includes stints on cruise ships, bars, restaurants and managing the catering for the world’s media at London 2012. I currently work with corporate catering firm OfficeServe growing their business in London.

Nelson Walters


I am a retired chartered accountant with a wealth of experience across the profession and in industry, having worked in London and The Netherlands with EY and BDO Stoy Hayward. I am a former committee member of TVCCI.

I decided to become a trustee to support the dedicated No5 team who quite clearly were putting in a super effort to provide a vital service to the young people of Reading

Debs Edwards

I have worked not only in the community sector but also in the public and private sector in a variety of jobs from shop worker through to Civil Servant at the MOD. I have been Labour Southcote Councillor since 2006. I was honoured to be the Worshipful Mayor of Reading for the 2011/2012 and 2018/19 terms. As a Forces child, I moved around frequently, returning to Reading with my family in 1981. I have 5 children and am a grandmother of 10. I volunteer as a school governor and support a number of community facilities and charities. I am passionate about getting the best possible support for our young people so that they can lead a fulfilling and happy life.

Liz Barry

I worked in London as a Civil Servant before I had my family.  I have four grown up children and four grandchildren.  After the birth of my youngest child I became a Magistrate and worked as a volunteer with a local school and pre-school.

I found from my work as a youth Magistrate and School Governor with responsibility for Special Needs that there was a huge gap in the provision of help for young people.  I was very inspired by the work of those in No5 who are trying to fill this gap by providing free counselling for children and young people.  This is why I decided to become a Trustee and I am very pleased to be involved in the organisation.

Susan Meyers Trustee

Susan Meyers

After my retirement from my 25 year career in Mental Health and Prison Services, I am honoured to be a Trustee at No 5. I saw the impact of young people not having access to counselling services when needed, and how poor decision making or the impact of mental health issues can effect future lives. I feel passionate that every young person should have equal access to services to support their mental health wellbeing.  I believe No 5 changes lives and helps young people to reach their potential.


Parents and Caregivers

Although No5 is a service for young people, we understand that sometimes it is helpful for other people involved with them to get support too.

Young people

No5 is Reading’s service for young people dedicated to providing free confidential counselling and emotional support to anyone between the ages of 11 and 25.


We are constantly developing new training and professional development programs to meet the needs of counsellors wishing to work with young people.