Family Counseling ServicesBy Kathryn Menue


BELVIDERE – Family Counseling Services (FCS) celebrated their grand opening in Belvidere on Tuesday, Oct. 20. At 11 a.m. on Tuesday morning, community members, members of the Belvidere Chamber of Commerce, employees of Rockford Sexual Assault Counseling Inc., and counselors and directors from the FCS all gathered around to commemorate their big move to Belvidere.

Prior to their expansion in Belvidere, Family Counseling Services was limited to one location at 210 N. Longwood St. in Rockford. However, FCS has been looking to reach Belvidere for the past four to five years.

“We came because there was a need in the community,” interim Executive Director Eileen Liezert said.

Liezert said that for people in the Belvidere community to have to drive all the way into Rockford could be too much of a hassle, so they planned on expanding their services to Belvidere.

Rockford Sexual Assault Counseling, who brought their counseling services to Belvidere eight years ago, aided FCS in their progression by helping them find resources to move and by letting the FCS sublet one of their offices in Belvidere, located at 860 Biester Dr., Suite 205.

One of the FCS counselors, Andrea Olson, is excited about the move and has actually split her time between her own private office and the Rockford and Belvidere offices.

“We knew this was a service we needed to develop,” Olson said. “It fills a need for people who aren’t seriously mentally ill, at a low cost.”

FCS works with individuals who are looking for counseling services whether it is for regular problems and obstacles, family and children, couples, school and education, divorce, mental and emotional health, re-marriage and “blended” families, couples, older adults and families, personal development, interpersonal relationships, jobs and careers, and anger management.

Family Counseling Services works on a sliding scale which means that the counseling service charges clients based upon their ability to pay. Olson said this is great for low income clients who need the counseling services, but don’t have the funds to pay for a private practice session.

“If there aren’t programs like ours, people go without,” Olson said.

Instead of letting “people go without,” Family Counseling Services works with people, with their schedules, and with their payment capabilities so that people can receive the resources they need.

Family Counseling Services also accepts Medicare and private insurance plans.

Liezert said that if clients need them, they can send a counselor over and be open during the evenings and a limited amount of time on Saturdays as well. She said extending the average office hours makes it easier for clients with full time jobs.

As of now, the FCS in Belvidere has only been open for about six weeks aiding a couple of clients a week, but they are hoping for more clients in the future.

If anyone is interested in receiving more information about Family Counseling Services, please call (815) 962-5585 or visit their website at:

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