I have had many clients suffering from mild to moderate depression who have been considerably helped by counselling. My counselling approach is integrative humanistic and I use Person Centred and Gestalt as appropriate to the individual client. The humanistic bit means that it is important to build up a good working relationship with the client and it annoys me that the NHS generally focuses only on CBT, in which the client/counsellor relationship is not seen as a priority as other counselling approaches can be equally and often more helpful.
CBT works well short-term as it gives the client a range of strategies to help them in specific areas of their life but does not usually address underlying issues. This means that, in the short term, the client is indeed helped but this does not necessarily last. However, the client finishes the allotted six sessions of therapy and is counted as a success - a tick in the box for the NHS and when the client comes back 18 months later, needing help again, he/she is counted as a new patient.
Humanistic counselling relies on a positive therapeutic relationship with the client, in which client and counsellor work together to help the client regain control of his life, which tends to have a long-term effect.
Although I don't know what the situation is nationwide, another cause for concern in my area is that GPs are now referring clients for counselling at Mind rather than providing a counselling service at their surgeries, which seems to me very much like counselling on the cheap. Strangely, it then no longer seems important that most of the counselling there is non-CBT, but of course, the GP is saving money.