Hull-based charity SEED thrown a lifeline by local counselling training centre ECPT

SEED Eating Disorder Support Service, a charity founded by Hull actor Gemma Oaten’s parents Marg and Dennis 22 years ago as they fought for her life amidst a 13-year eating disorder battle, have been thrown a lifeline by Ellesmere Counselling and Psychotherapy Training in their quest to find a new home for their growing support service.

ECPT and SEED are proud to announce that space has been made available at ECPT’s specialist therapy resource centre on Beverley Road in Hull. SEED’s new resource room is complemented by access to the specialist therapy facilities including 1-to-1 talking therapy rooms and group rooms which will enable SEED to kickstart their new face to face counselling service, in partnership with psychotherapy and counselling students from ECPT.

Established for over 15 years, ECPT are specialists in training and supporting counsellors and psychotherapists and provide facilities to support private therapists as well as services such as partner company Space2BHeard CIC. ECPT have trained and accredited numerous counsellors and psychotherapists in the local area, many of which progress in to working in private practice locally or in roles for the NHS and other mental health organisations.

ECPT Director Kathie Hostick said: “We are delighted that we have been able to help SEED continue their valuable work by facilitating them at one of our centres. We hope to see them continue to grow and provide support to those experiencing eating disorders from across the region and the UK. We are looking forward to working with them on developing their talking therapy service which in turn provides valuable frontline clinical experience for our counselling and psychotherapy students. It’s an exciting time for us.”

SEED were seeking a new base for their charity after losing their space at a local NHS centre alongside contracts which enabled them to operate at no cost to their users. SEED have helped 1000’s of people with and recovering from eating disorders since 2000, as well as supporting the loved ones and carers. The demand for their services has grown so much that a team of five now exists to build on the incredible work done by founders Marg Oaten MBE and Dennis Oaten, who started the charity from their direct lived experience of helping actor daughter Gemma, who now manages the charity.

Gemma Oaten said: “We are relieved to have found somewhere to call home so we can carry on providing support to those in need, and we would like to say a huge thank you to those who have donated to our ongoing fundraiser which has provided valuable funds towards our work and will go towards securing our new Resource room. What we do is very labour intensive, and we are proud of our professional team, and we need to keep them in place for as long as possible. Our plans for the future include The Recovery After The Recovery programme a project we will begin to pilot in April 2022, along with our continued work in schools with our Eating Disorders Educational Toolkit Resource furthermore the vital day to day support of those affected by eating disorders. Early intervention is key and we at SEED are passionate about treating the person and not the eating disorder. The Resource Room is a vital hub to facilitate our life saving work.”

SEED will officially operate from their new base from April 2022 and are looking forward to welcoming those experiencing eating disorders to access support at the centre or remotely, and to working with ECPT students to develop their new talking therapy service.

More information about SEED can be found at and about Ellesmere Counselling and Psychotherapy Training at