Counselling psychologist Anna Maria Mora wants her colleagues in Tobago to become members of the International Association for Counselling (IAC).
Mora, who is the IAC's Caribbean's representative, said since 1966 the non-governmental organisation has been working to advance the development of counselling through practice, education, research, and advocacy initiatives.
"Our vision is a world where counselling is available to all," she said.
Mora said over the years, the IAC has connected to all of the major counselling associations worldwide.
She said at the association's 52nd annual conference, which was held in Italy on September 18, was a tremendous success.
Mora said at one of the association's day-long events, approximately 30 associations were in attendance.
"We conservatively estimated the combined represented memberships to be 185,000 counsellors."
Mora said the organisation is currently engaged in a major counselling project, titled World Mapping of the Counselling Profession.
She said the aim of the project is to compile data and information about the scale, standards and contexts of counselling activity in each of the world's 196 countries.
Mora told Newsday: "We have carried out the mapping of the pilot region, Latin America, in partnership with the American Counselling Association (ACA), whose support we gratefully acknowledge."
She added: "Generating detailed knowledge about the counselling profession for each country will significantly raise public and professional awareness of counselling, enable enhanced advocacy (both national and international) and improved information-sharing for individual counsellors and the wider profession."
Mora said the World Health Organisation encourages the IAC mapping activity as a positive development in gaining an accurate assessment of the numbers of mental health professionals worldwide.
"I want to encourage them to join the IAC and, in so doing, support the development of counselling worldwide."
She said IAC material, including quarterly journals, webinars and certificate of membership, is available to individuals and organisations.
For further information, Mora can be contacted at 363-7948 or 642-9921.