Our Counsellors

Dalia Wood, BA, MA, RP

Registered Psychotherapist

Dalia’s primary therapeutic focus aims at creating a safe and comfortable space for clients to feel heard and supported facilitating the unfolding of stories. She believes that clients are the authors of their own story. Some of Dalia’s strengths are active listening, positive regard to the client’s journey and history, and prioritizing resiliency and client’s strengths.

Dalia specializes in working with individuals who are experiencing concerns related to depression and anxiety, life-changing transitions, intimate partner violence, school difficulties, bullying and self-image issues.

Dalia’s work is informed by modalities such as Narrative Therapy and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy and Solution-focused brief therapy.

She offers counselling in both Arabic and English. Dalia has completed a Master’s Degree in Spiritual Care and Psychotherapy. She is a full member of the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario, CRPO.

Derek Cozzi, M.Ed., RP(Qualifying), CCC

Registered Psychotherapist (Qualifying)

Derek provides an affirming and non-judgmental space where clients can safely explore personal concerns and begin making meaningful shifts in their lives. Derek values transparency and collaboration and strives towards building strong, positive relationships with clients. Believing that clients are the experts of their lives, Derek works with them to discover their strengths and resilience, bolster self-agency, and conceive new possibilities and ways of being.

Derek uses an integrative Narrative Therapy approach, incorporating elements from Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT), and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). His genuine, warm, and compassionate nature is known for helping clients feel safe and comfortable. Derek takes a post-Feminist and intersectional approach to counselling that acknowledges social identities and the impact of oppressions on well-being. Derek is a LGBTTIQQ+ positive counsellor. His areas of interest include identity exploration, anxiety, depression, self-esteem/self-worth, anger, loss, and interpersonal challenges.

Derek completed his Master of Education in Counselling Psychology at the University of Ottawa. He also possesses a Bachelor of Arts (Hons.) degree in Psychology from Ryerson University.

Marianela León de Mujica, M.Ed., RP

Registered Psychotherapist

Marianela brings warmth, gentleness and an ability to provide a safe environment conducive to self-directed growth and wellbeing. She believes that people deserve kindness, understanding and support as they navigate new chapters and challenges in their lives.

Marianela works with the Refugee and Vulnerable Newcomers program and offers a wealth of experience supporting Immigrants, Newcomers and Refugees in both Spanish and English. She holds an integrative person-centred, anti-oppressive approach with a cross-cultural perspective and a deep commitment to Social Justice. She is strained and use techniques from, Gestalt therapy, Somatic Experiencing Trauma Therapy, Self-compassion Focused Therapy, CBT, Art and Play Therapy and Narrative therapy.

Marianela works primarily with adult clients experiencing issues such as symptoms of depression, anxiety, grief and loss, relational challenges and traumatic stress. Marianela also specializes in domestic violence prevention, parenting skills and pre/post immigration & cultural issues.

Marianela holds a Master’s Degree in Education and Counselling, is a Registered Psychotherapist with the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario and is member of the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association. In her home country, Venezuela, Marianela combined her clinical counselling work with other professional activities at Universidad Pedagógica Experimental Libertador, as a professor and social researcher of family, community and education.

Mawdah Albatnuni, MA(Q), RP(Qualifying)

Registered Psychotherapist (Qualifying)

Mawdah believes deeply that her role as a counsellor is to create a warm, non-judgmental, safe space where her clients feel heard and validated. She values offering a client-centred, cultural lens and through this supportive and collaborative stance, her clients are encouraged to become more aware of their strengths, values, and self.  She believes that every person has a story to tell.

Mawdah is an English and Arabic speaking counsellor with the Refugee and Vulnerable Newcomers program. Through a client informed process, Mawdah tailors her approach to best suit her clients’ individual needs. Using an integrative approach she draws from various therapeutic models including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, Narrative Therapy, Positive Psychotherapy, and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. Whatever the techniques used, Mawdah works from a trauma-informed lens as well as a cultural frame. Mawdah works with adult individuals, families, youth, and children. Her areas of interest include identity formation, anxiety, self-esteem, behavioural difficulties, grief, and depression.

Michael Gershuny, MSW, RSW, Registered Social Worker, Psychotherapist

Director of Counselling and Mental Health Services

Michael Gershuny is an internationally educated social worker who holds both a Master’s degree in Social Work and Educational Counselling. He is a registered member of the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers and the Ontario Association of Social Workers.

Michael’s main role is the Director of The Counselling Group. In this role, he works closely together with the staff counsellors to ensure and further develop the high quality of services provided by the Group.

In addition, Michael provides counselling to individuals, dealing with a wide range of emotional and psychological issues. His areas of specialty and interest include interpersonal relationships, depression, anxiety, self-esteem issues, trauma, grief and loss, ageing, chronic mental health and, LGBTQ+ related issues and identity-related issues. Michael is bilingual and offers counselling in both English and Hebrew.

Michael is trained with a range of therapeutic models including psychodynamic, narrative, CBT and existential therapy. In collaboration with the individuals he works with, Michael tailors a personal care plan to assist individuals in returning to a place of health, ease and comfort. Michael’s work is person-centred and strength-based and respects each individual for who they are and who they want to become. Michael’s working philosophy is that the individual’s inner and external resources are the main drives for their recovery and will help them in achieving meaningful change in their life.

Reina McSheffrey, M.Ed., RP, CCC-S

Registered Psychotherapist

Reina takes a holistic approach, looking at the whole individual (physical, mental, emotional, spiritual) and believes that the answers lie within us. Her approach in counselling is direct, down-to-earth and empathetic.  She works as a partner in self-discovery using eclectic interventions and theoretical orientations.

In her practice, Reina utilizes Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, integrating Attachment, Emotion-focused and Humanistic theories. Reina works primarily with adults and her areas of interest include: relationship issues, self-esteem & boundaries, enhancing communication skills, trauma, anger management and parenting issues. Reina also specializes in supporting individuals who have experienced intimate partner violence and is an LGBTTQ+ positive counsellor. She manages “Transformations”, the anger management group that is offered through TCG.

Reina maintains “Supervisor’s Certification” with the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association and is a licensed supervisor with the CRPO, providing field supervision to university interns training for a counselling career.

Reina graduated from Queen’s University and Carleton University with degrees in Psychology. She is also a graduate of the University of Ottawa’s Master of Education (Counselling Psychology) program.

Sabine Jean, M.Ed., RP(Qualifying)

Registered Psychotherapist (Qualifying)

Sabine works in the Refugees and Vulnerable Newcomers program, providing social and insightful emotional support and counselling to address both the immediate and long-term psychological needs of refugees and newcomers. She has experience working with immigrants and has a sensitive awareness about their life experience which fosters a better understanding of their needs and focuses on building a trusting therapeutic relationship. By understanding the complexity of a migration journey, Sabine makes sure she creates a comfortable and safe environment for clients to feel supported and heard. Sabine’s strengths are practicing active listening, her unconditional positive regard and her capacity to always prioritize the client’s well-being.

Sabine uses various therapy models in her practice such as Narrative Therapy, Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Dialectical Behavior Therapy, elements of Play Therapy and Client Centered Therapy from a culturally sensitive perspective. Sabine has experience working with individuals and families; providing counselling in areas including depression, anxiety, grief and loss, anger management, relationship distress, migration, those who have gone through traumatic events and other life transitions. She also works with youth and children who experience difficulties in managing their emotions.

Sabine is a graduate from the University of Ottawa who has a Master’s Degree in Counselling Psychology and previously a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. She is a member of the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association and offers counselling services in multiple languages such as French, Spanish, English, and Creole.

Sarah Alderwick, MSW, RSW

Registered Social Worker, Psychotherapist

Sarah provides counselling to individuals facing a wide variety of emotional and psychological challenges in their lives. With compassion, caring and acceptance, Sarah’s strength lies in building strong therapeutic relationships with her clients.  She strives to support clients to draw from their inner strength and wisdom to help foster positive change in their lives. Sarah creates a safe and open environment to assist with a variety of challenges including anxiety, depression, interpersonal issues, domestic violence, grief/loss, and postpartum difficulties. She welcomes opportunities to work with people from diverse backgrounds and cultures and is LGBTTIQQ+ positive.

Sarah collaborates with each client, tailoring her approach to meet their therapeutic needs. Her practice draws from Narrative, Attachment, Feminist, and Cognitive-Behavioural Theories, and is Trauma-Informed. She is passionate about social justice and poverty reduction. She has worked in a variety of community settings and has extensive experience assisting clients to navigate the different social services, housing, and welfare systems.

She completed her Master of Social Work at Wilfrid Laurier University, is a Registered Social Worker in good standing with the Ontario College of Social Worker and Social Service Workers and is a member of the Ontario Association of Social Workers.

Shannon Sweeting-Woods, MSW, RSW

Registered Social Worker, Psychotherapist

Shannon’s collaborative, intuitive, and compassionate approach makes connecting with clients one of her greatest strengths. She offers a supportive environment where clients feel heard. Shannon believes that a central part of her role as a therapist is to evoke, within each individual, their own inner wisdom, strengths, resources, and values, while also supporting them in making connections between their family of origin experiences, lived experiences, social location, and the issues they face, in order to facilitate healing, growth, and change.

Shannon works with individuals, couples, and families and has trained in Emotionally Focused Couples/Family Therapy. She has also completed Beginning I in the Somatic Experiencing® Method of Trauma Resolution. Shannon’s clinical practice is differentiated based on client diversity and needs but is heavily informed by Attachment, Psychodynamic, Feminist, and Narrative Theories, while also incorporating Mindfulness strategies. Her use of these approaches is grounded in an understanding of trauma and the multiple possible paths to healing. In her work with couples, Shannon supports partners to develop an understanding of their interactions, and to shift from reactivity to responses that are connected and attachment affirming. She believes that when attachment needs are met, couples have the capacity to resolve the problems/issues they face together.

Shannon has a Master’s Degree in Social Work and is a Registered Social Worker in good standing with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers. She also has a Bachelor’s degree in Education and is an Ontario Certified Teacher. Her experiences working with children, youth, and adults with exceptionalities, in a teaching role, has provided her with sound knowledge and understanding of the challenges and issues facing these individuals within the school system and work environments.

 

Stephanie Dugdale

MA, RP, CCC, Registered Psychotherapist

With a gentle and compassionate approach, Stephanie seeks to help individuals and couples explore their experiences to facilitate change in their lives. She works collaboratively with her clients as they build a stronger sense of self-awareness and self-acceptance. Stephanie works with clients with a wide range of struggles, including anxiety; stress; fearfulness; depression or a feeling of despair and disharmony in life; postpartum difficulties; disordered eating and body image confusion; loss and grief; relationship and interpersonal difficulties; sexuality; LGBTTIQQ issues; separation and divorce; and domestic violence.

A central theme in Stephanie’s work and training has been helping trauma survivors. Stephanie utilizes a model that begins through the creation of a secure counselling relationship. She works with adults and youth who experienced childhood trauma and sexual abuse as well as people struggling to overcome a family of origin issues.

In her work with couples, Stephanie supports partners to explore what happens in their interactions with each other. Through the process of establishing trust and communication, partners can move from protective reactions to connecting responses, from defended positions and insecurity to the freedom, fulfillment and sense of security that comes from feeling able to truly access and show themselves to each other.

A graduate of St. Paul University and a Canadian Certified Counsellor, Stephanie has a Master of Arts in Counselling and has trained in both individual and couples counselling.