Otago Polytechnic

Website outage

Our website will be down for essential maintenance from 3.00pm Wed 27 March until the afternoon of Thurs 28 March (at the latest) – we apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

The Kowhai 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 knowledge of theory, life experience, previous training and diversity. Students are supported by lecturing staff and counsellors within the community to provide free counselling in Dunedin which is professional, supportive and accessible.

  Making an appointment

If you would like to make an appointment you can phone or email us directly, 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 be the recipient of the counselling.

The Kowhai 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 Thursday or Friday.

Kowhai Centre is open to the public. We accept donations and do not charge for services.

Make an appointment

  Services offered

The Kowhai Centre offers individual counselling sessions to people over the age of 16 years in a confidential and safe setting to explore, clarify or resolve life's challenges such as:

  • Relationships
  • Grief and loss
  • Stress
  • Parenting
  • Self-esteem
  • 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).

  What you can expect
  • Confidentiality
  • Professional support
  • Respectful, caring counsellors
  • Comfortable, private setting
  • A person-centred approach and other counselling models of practice
  • NZAC supervised counselling.

Jodie Black
Kowhai Centre Practice Manager
Counselling Psychologist, NZPsS

Chris Williamson
Head of College, College of Community Development and Personal Wellbeing
MEd (Couns), PGDip, MNZAC

Additional members of staff within the College of Community Development and Personal Wellbeing provide supervision: Morag Cunningham and Jodie Black.

  Hours of service

Thursday 11.00am - 7.00pm

Friday 9.00am - 2.00pm


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 Kowhai Centre Manager, kowhai.centre@op.ac.nz

  Visitor Carparking

Visitor carparking is located adjacent D Block off Harbour Terrace. Please display your appointment card on your vehicle dashboard.


Kowhai Centre

G301, Level 3, G Block 
Corner of Union Street and Harbour Terrace (opposite the Robertson Library)
College of Community Development and Personal Wellbeing, Otago Polytechnic
Dunedin 9054

Visitor carparking is located adjacent D Block off Harbour Terrace. Please display your appointment card on your vehicle dashboard.