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About Me

 

Vision

A generation of young adults who possess the capacity not only to manage and cope with their feelings and circumstances, but also to exercise their superpowers of connectedness, focused attention, and commitment so they can engage wholly and effectively with whatever arises in their lives.

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Background

I have worked in schools, domestic violence shelters, residential facilities, child welfare, and community mental healthsettings helping kids and families manage concerns such as anxiety, depression, body image, self-esteem, trauma, grief/loss, and school issues since 2006.

Qualifications

Master's in Social Work, Boston College, 2011

Licensed in Oregon #L7416 since 2017

Additional Certifications: 

  • Therapeutic Lifestory Work Certificate with Richard Rose, ORPARC 2019

  • Adoptive and Foster Family Certificate Program, Portland State University 2018

 

Mission

I aim to support the positive expansion of young people's emerging identities by providing trauma-informed services to children, youth and families that give them tools to

  • develop relational, communication and self-care skills

  • get to know their own voice, strength and capacity

  • learn to intentionally cultivate and tap into their inner and outer resources

 

Services

  • Individual counseling to children, pre-teens teens and young adults

    • learning to manage stress, depression and anxiety

    • adjustment and school transitions

    • trauma stemming from adoption, separation, attachment wounds

    • body image, self-acceptance, self-care and wellness, healthy relationships

  • Family counseling​

    • stress arising from family conflict and transitions

    • families already in the foster care system or seeking to foster or adopt a child

    • improving communication and understanding​

    • coping skills as well as safe and healthy ways to deal with anger

  • Groups for elementary school age, teen, and pre-teen kids that are designed to

    • facilitate experiences of understanding and mutual support​

    • foster acceptance and belonging

    • increase capacity for focused attention

    • teach and offer opportunities to practice relationship and problem solving skills

Approach

My approach is fundamentally compassionate, strengths-based, humanistic, and client-centered.

 

I use expressive arts, play therapy, and sand tray as well as attachment, cognitive-behavioral, and motivational methods.

While I believe the benefits of using those traditional therapies to learn to regulate one's thoughts and emotions are clear, I also recognize that we humans aren't closed systems. We exist, not only in between our own two ears, but also within the context of our interconnections -- with other individuals, our communities and environment, and the web of life itself. 

Since those interconnections are so critical to young people's development, I also believe that, in this time of unprecedented change, uncertainty and divisiveness, they need --and deserve -- our support for learning how to use connectedness as a potent tool to develop the inner strength, flexibility and courage to navigate whatever lies ahead in their lives. 

That's why I interweave community, movement, love of nature, and --whenever possible-- the healing power of the human-animal bond with more conventional therapeutic methods to create fresh, out-of-the-box services for youth ages 3-30.

 

About Me

In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my cats, family, and friends. I enjoy traveling, kayaking, hiking, and volunteering with animals.

Giving Back to the Community

A portion of the fee for animal-assisted therapy groups is donated back to the non-profit organizations I partner with to provide my services.

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