Professional and Ethical
As a Clinical Psychologist, I am bound by the professional codes of conduct specified by my accrediting bodies – the HCPC and the BPS. This can allow you to feel confident that you will receive a competent, ethical and evidence-based service from me, with clear pathways for expressing any concerns you may have. Please click on the icons below to check my credentials. You can also request my full confidentiality policy prior to starting work with me.
Responsive and Inclusive
Having spent many years working in the public sector, I feel I have seen the best and the worst of resource and target-driven practice, as well as the impact of increasingly high thresholds to access essential mental health and social care services. Whilst I have undoubtedly learnt from these challenges, my hope is that Roots and Wings can offer something different. That is, an opportunity to be truly responsive to the unique needs, strengths and hopes of the children and families that I work with, and non-exclusionary on the basis of risk or need. To this end, I am committed to being flexible and adaptive in relation to the level of support that a young person needs (i.e. direct or indirect support via their parents, school or wider network) and the duration of time that they may need support for (which may be short or longer-term or episodic).
Having had the honour and privilege to work alongside children, young people and families who have faced unimaginable adversity in their early lives, including trauma, neglect, poverty, chronic illness and loss, I am always amazed by the power of human resilience. Sometimes that resilience can present in challenging and problematic ways, such as through anger or violence, or it may impact upon a young person’s ability to trust in the relationships around them. It is nonetheless, resilience. This is because it can be seen as an adaptive response to how their life experiences have caused them to perceive the world and those around them. The opportunity therefore to really get alongside a young person and their family, to experience their pain and vulnerability, to understand their hidden (as well as their expressed) needs, to develop their resilience and to support their family to better know how to respond to them, is an aspect of my work that I really value. Equally, bringing a young person’s wider professional network together to develop a shared understanding of their needs and a collaborative plan of how best support them, is hugely rewarding for me. In achieving these goals, I hold the working assumption that the young people, their parents and the professionals that support them, are doing the best they can with the knowledge and skills they have available to them. I also hold a tenacious optimism for young people and their families, which can sometimes precede their own ability to dare to hope for a better life for themselves.
Whilst I am trained in a wide range of theoretical modalities, I feel that attachment theory speaks most clearly to me and generally guides my clinical practice. Indeed, the name of my service – Roots and Wings – is a reflection of my belief that at their core, children need to feel safe, unconditionally loved and emotionally secure in their attachment relationships (their ‘roots’). If this can be successfully achieved, I believe children become ‘freed up’ to explore the world in healthy ways, to learn about themselves and others and to achieve their full potential (their ‘wings’).
In developing this service, I have expanded the roots and wings metaphor further within my service logo. This logo combines the images of a tree and a bird to represent a child’s roots and wings respectively. A tree is also a symbol of how, with the right care and conditions, something magnificent, strong and functional can be nurtured from the most humble of beginnings. If you look closely, you will notice that the tree in my logo is not of an obvious species. This is in recognition of the fact that all the children and families I work with are unique and need to be ‘discovered’ within their own right. You might also notice that the image of the bird – and the vibrant colours of the logo – denote those of a bluebird. I chose a bluebird owing to it being a spiritual symbol of happiness, joy, peace and good health. The bluebird is also a hardy little bird and is said to represent a period of sunny, cloudless weather after a night of snowfall. At their heart therefore, both the tree and the bluebird represent living things that need to overcome huge adversity to reach the breath-taking beauty of their full potential.