Co-Founder, Psychologist, Instructor, and Consultant
I am a Registered Psychologist and Registered Play Therapist. I also have a Bachelors of Education from the University of Alberta and practiced as an elementary teacher in Edmonton before going on to do my Masters degree in Psychology. I am also the founder and Executive Director of Family Counselling Centres.
I have been working in private practice for the past seven years in Alberta, primarily with children and their families. I offer clinical supervision to masters-level counselling students, and provisional psychologists. I also include animals in my therapy and have developed canine assisted and equine assisted therapy programs.
I approach my clinical and consultative work with parents and professionals with an attachment and neurobiological lens: all of my work is based on the neurology of the brain and how attachment is integral to adaptive functioning of both children and adults.
I am a passionate, empathetic, and experienced clinician here for my community to help children, teens, and adults heal and grow. I aim to have warm, respectful, and productive relationships with the clients I collaborate with, and I enjoy being part of the positive change that families experience.
I am a Registered Psychologist and a Registered Play Therapist. I completed my undergraduate studies in South-Africa before engaging in a one year, full time internship in Chicago at the Cancer Treatment Centers of America. In 2012, I received my Masters of Counselling from City University of Seattle. During my Master’s degree, I worked both on the front lines and as a counsellor with foster and adoptive families who faced a range of emotional, behavioural and cognitive challenges.
Since completing my degree, I have worked in a private practice setting with children, teens, adults and families. I work primarily from an attachment based perspective. This means that I work with clients to explore how early relationships affect how we come to understand our self, other people and the world.
It is an honour to work with clients and families to create a space for lasting change. I endeavour to always approach my clients with respect, honesty, integrity and warmth.
Co-Founder, Psychologist, Instructor, and Consultant
Jennie Abbot is the Founder and Director of Harmony Kids Yoga & Mindfulness Company, the creator of YogaBREAK for Classrooms, Harmony at Home Kits, various Parenting and Educator Workshops and The My Peaceful Play Game for Kids. She is a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) and Registered Children’s Yoga Teacher (CYA-CYT) with the Canadian Yoga Alliance teaching over 10,000 children to date.
Jennie is the co-creator of the Harmony 95 Hour Registered Children’s Yoga Teacher Training Program through the International Yoga Alliance. Jennie’s offers Workshops for Parents and Educators in partnership with the Institute of Child Psychology. Jennie is also a Color Me Yoga Children’s Yoga Teacher Graduate, Rainbow Kids Yoga Certified Instructor, with Specialties in Yoga for the Special Needs, Safe Anatomy for Children and Trauma Informed Yoga for Children and Youth through Yoga Ed.
In addition, Jennie has taken Mindfulness Training through Dr. Dan Siegel, Author and Executive Director of the Mindsight Institute. Jennie has worked with children, families, government, non-profit organizations and educators for over 20 years sharing her passion of bringing happiness and peace into the lives of children through yoga and mindfulness.
Tammy is a Registered Psychologist who runs a Private Practice out of Ponoka Alberta. Tammy works in office and in schools with children, teens and families; specializing in play therapy, art therapy and Cognitive behavioural therapy.
Tammy is an attachment based therapist and believes in a family approach. Tammy believes that having parental/ guardian involvement in therapy, whenever possible, helps to facilitate deeper and longer lasting growth from the therapy process, for all involved. She works collaboratively with clients and their families to support them in meeting their therapeutic goals focusing on thought processes, such as self talk, play therapy, sand tray therapy, and art therapy.
Working to deepen self understanding for ones own mood management, anxiety and self regulation. Tammy works to provide information to gain more understanding of internal processes, developmental norms, and strategies to support the family and the child. Tammy has experience working in the school system and medical offices and understands the importance of wrap around services and collaborative supportive approaches.
I completed my undergraduate degree at the University of the Fraser Valley, in British Columbia in 2010. During this time, I also worked in residential care settings with children and youth who had experienced significant trauma and presented with complex mental health challenges. Through a process of seeking support and guidance to best support these individuals I began to learn about attachment theory and the impacts of trauma on development. This knowledge now serves as my foundation.
In 2012, I began my Masters in Counselling Psychology at City University of Seattle. While completing this degree, I also worked in a school setting supporting complex mental health in the classroom. Through this work I continued to witness the importance of relationships in the developmental process. In 2015, I completed my graduated degree and began work as a Child and Adolescent therapist at the Sexual Assault Centre of Edmonton (SACE), and also began a small private practice. I still hold both positions today and value you the rich learning and experience they provide me. I work primarily from an attachment perspective and believe that relationship is an essential component of healing. I help my clients to develop a sense of safety in relationship in order to create an environment in which they can process their experiences. I also support parents in understanding the impacts of trauma and developing strategies in supporting their children at home.
I feel privileged to continually have the opportunity to learn from the children, youth and families that I work with. I strive to work collaboratively with my clients so that I may learn about their unique experiences and support them on their path towards growth and healing.
Registered Psychologist and Registered Play Therapist
Cierra Chmiliar is a Registered Psychologist and Registered Play Therapist in Alberta, Canada. She gained her undergraduate degree from the University of Alberta, and her Masters of Counselling degree from City University of Seattle. She currently works in a private practice specializing in working with children, teens, and families using a variety of types of therapy. Her background includes both personal and professional experience working with children with developmental disorders (including Autism Spectrum Disorder and ADHD). She has also been a passionate horse person throughout her life, leading to a specializing in canine- and equine-assisted therapy.
Cierra approaches her clinical and consultative work with parents and professionals with an attachment, developmental, and neurobiological lens. Her aim is to work together to best serve the unique and individual needs of every child.
I have been working with children, youth and adults with a variety of educational and mental health needs for the last 10+ years. My work experience has allowed me to have a wide variety of opportunities in supporting people with diverse needs.I am passionate about the field of psychology and enjoy empowering clients in many ways. I support clients using several modalities including humanistic theoretical foundations, cognitive behavioural strategies, positive psychology influences and mindfulness practices. I have received certification in Prolonged Exposure therapy for working with trauma. Additionally, I have been trained to use SandPlay Therapy which is based in Jungian psychology and Kalffian theory and has beneficial applications for all ages and am currently working toward my Advanced Candidate Certification in SandPlay.
I obtained my undergraduate degree with a major in Psychology from the University of Alberta in 2008 at which time I added a year of cooperative work experience to my degree so that I could have practical time working with children as a Behavior Interventionist. In between my educational endeavours I had the opportunity to volunteer and work with the Zebra Child Protection Centre where I gained a wealth of experience in child advocacy and court preparation and also supported children and families. I went on to complete my Masters of Counselling with City University of Seattle in 2012. For my Master’s level practicum I had the opportunity to work in the Stollery Children’s hospital in Pediatric Oncology providing therapeutic supports and assisting with neuropsychological assessments. Following my graduation and practicum I helped to co-develop a program supported in the Not For Profit Sector assisting children and families with pediatric cancer with reintegrating into the community.
anxiety and stress reduction for all ages
coping with chronic illness and stress related to illness management
grief and loss emotional coping strategies
Mental Health Therapist; Grief Recovery Specialist
Samantha Dover, M.C. is a Registered Provisional Psychologist in Edmonton, AB. Before entering the psychotherapy field, Sam worked as a Director at the Zebra Child Protection Centre in which she supported children, youth, and families who had been affected by child abuse. Through her work there, Sam recognized the tremendous impact trauma and maltreatment can have on a developing child and how critical safe and caring adults are in that child’s healing. It was also through this work that Sam recognized the value in offering education on some of our more “sensitive” subjects. She believes knowledge provides power and sharing the latest research and best practices on topics that may be a bit uncomfortable allows us to have the information we need to make informed and healthy choices in our parenting or caregiving.
Sam currently works for a private practice in Sherwood Park, AB where she specializes in treating those suffering from traumas or losses. Sam is a certified grief recovery specialist and has training in a variety of other treatment modalities including, DBT, EMDR, theraplay, and play therapy. In addition to her clinical practice and webinars available through the Institute of Child Psychology, Sam is also an associate faculty member at City University of Seattle.
Teacher, Educator, and Speaker
I am both an educator and a mother of 4. After completing a college diploma in Natural Resources and a Bachelor’s Degree in Sciences, I graduated from the University of Alberta in 2007 with my Bachelor of Education After-Degree. I began teaching in the traditional classroom but shortly after travelled overseas to teach in South Korea. Upon my return, I started a position in a High School Outreach, a more alternative school setting offering courses for students working independently. Over the next 8 years I would continue to teach both in the traditional classroom setting as well as in Distance Education. I also run a small business providing equine instruction and coaching. More recently, I am the founder of the Youth Launch Initiative, a company developed to provide support, resources and education to parents of students and young adults.
Sara Heitzman is a certified Addictions Counsellor and a provisionally registered Psychologist in Alberta, Canada. She has worked in the field of social interventions for the past 15 years and more specifically as a clinician since 2016. Sara completed her graduate studies at City University of Settle completing a master’s in counselling psychology. Some foundational beliefs and values that Sara has around mental health is that mental health is an integral component to all people’s wellbeing. Cultural and spirituality presents an important piece of every individual and Sara strives to be culturally informed and is curious about how people experience their culture.
Sara believes that individuals are the experts in their journey through life and that growth happens with the influence of relationships. Sara is proficient in client centered therapy, CBT, narrative, attachment and using art therapy as a method of expression. Sara is also trained in EMDR and uses DBT therapies when clinically indicated. Sara can work with youth and adults and enjoys collaborating with parents and families to create meaningful connections.
Melody Morin, a registered psychologist with over 20 years’ experience helping people, is the founder of Level Up Leadership and Psychology. Melody holds a dual master’s degree, including an executive MBA achieved in 2013. She is currently in the late stages of her Ph.D. where she has focused upon understanding the lack of women in senior leadership positions, specifically within the area of medicine. As a registered psychologist, Melody is trained in various assessment and diagnostic tools that you won’t find offered elsewhere.
Prior to launching Level Up Leadership, Melody worked in a variety of roles in the non-profit and public sectors, focusing on forensics and children’s mental health. After spending 15 years on the front lines, supporting youth and families who had experienced a vast array of trauma and abuse in their life, Melody moved into management. She had success in various leadership positions, and in 2009, she was awarded the CEO’s award for her part in an organization-wide change initiative.
Registered Professional Counsellor
Lucy Sloan is the owner and founder of Lil’ Steps Wellness Farm in St. Malo, Manitoba. She provides animal-assisted counselling services to children and teens with the help of her many animal co-workers. Lucy is also the proud mother of three children and takes pride in her role as a mother and teacher to them.
Lucy has over 20 years of experience and education in mental health and counselling field. She graduated from the University of Manitoba with a Bachelor of Arts with a major in Psychology and her Applied Counselling Certification. She went on to compete her Animal-assisted Therapy Professional Certification and is in the process of being certified as an Equine Facilitated Wellness Mental Health Professional with Equine Facilitated Wellness Canada. She is also a Registered Professional Counsellor with the Canadian Professional Counselling Association and a professional member of the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association. Lucy is an author to her first children’s story book and has created both a school-based and parent and caregiver program from this story to help build capacity in the adults of children who struggle with mental health difficulties.