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Counsellor Profiles

Skylight Counsellors are supported by the Clinical Services Team Leader.

Shona McNeil
Counsellor (Online)
Registered with NZAC

Shona’s background is in arts and mental health, and she works with children, adults and families. As well as being a counsellor, she runs a creative wellbeing centre in Kāpiti. Shona draws on her Celtic background and holistic models of health including Te Whare Tapa Whā. She uses elements of CBT and solution focused therapy, using a person-centred approach to build connection and walk alongside people on their road to wellbeing.

Sarah Markham
Counsellor (Auckland)
Professional Member NZAC

Sarah is a Skylight Counsellor in Auckland. She has experience working alongside children, young people, families and adults. She supports clients to move forward with a new found confidence and awareness. She uses a client lead counselling approach incorporating narrative therapy, CBT and play therapy.

Louise Rolfe
Counsellor (Wellington and Hutt Valley)
Registered with NZAC

Louise has a Bachelor of Counselling and has worked in Kapiti with women of all ages, experiencing a wide range of issues. She has also worked with parents experiencing a broad range of parenting issues and feels passionate about supporting families – she has five children of her own and has first-hand experience of the challenges of being a parent. Louise uses a client centred approach and incorporates elements of Narrative, Solution Focussed and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy as well as other approaches – depending on the needs of the client. She aims to support clients to draw on their own strengths, enabling them to identify their own solutions.

Jackie Calder
Counsellor (Wellington)
Registered with NZAC

Jackie has a Diploma in Counselling and has worked as a Counsellor for over 15 years. Using a person centred approach Jackie works with adults, youth and children. A particular area of specialty for Jackie is working with children who have experienced trauma, loss, grief, anxiety and other issues that children may struggle with. Jackie uses sandtray therapy, drawing and play therapy in her work.

Suzana Sagadin 
Counsellor (Wellington)
Registered with NZAC

Suzana has worked with children/teens, families and adults. She uses a solution-focused, person centered approach, and uses play therapy. Suzana works with clients who have experienced trauma, grief, family breakdown and mental health issues. She is also interested in a neuro-scientific approach to counselling, specifically in self-healing methods. She understands the challenges for culturally diverse clients, based on gender and sexuality, as well as ethnicity. Suzana is passionate about providing a safe and non-judgmental space, where clients can draw on their own strengths and build their own solutions.

Sarah Wright
Counsellor (Wellington, Porirua)
Registered with NZAC

Sarah is experienced in counselling young people and their families. In particular she has worked with teenagers and university students and has provided support to the bereaved and the dying. Sarah has a gentle, non-judgmental, and person-centered approach. This gives her clients the space to develop a real person to person connection. Sarah works together with her clients to arrive at new ways of being and/or to make sense and meaning in their world. Sarah has a Masters in Counselling from Massey University.

Elizabeth Hamilton
Counsellor (Christchurch)
Registered with SWRB, member of ANZASW

Elizabeth has more than 30 years’ experience working in Elder Health, especially dementia, and in palliative care. She understands the impact of a chronic or life-limiting diagnosis, the challenge of change, loss, grief, and care giver stress. She brings a compassionate heart to the counselling space, believing in the power of exploration to encourage, support and empower clients to make sense of their world. She works with adults, using a holistic person-centered approach. Influenced by her social work background, Elizabeth has an understanding of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, and Te Whare Tapa Whā. Parent to three young adult children, all having experienced the Christchurch earthquakes, she appreciates the impact of trauma and change on physical and mental health. She understands the outer world can change in a heartbeat but a person's inner world needs time, and often support, to adjust to new realities.

Karen Hutchinson
Counsellor (Thames region)
Professional Member NZAC

Karen is a Narrative Therapist who trained at Unitec Auckland, gaining a Post Graduate Diploma in Counselling. Karen has experience in working with children, young people, individuals and couples. She specialises in identity and relationship restoration, grief and loss, and family harm intervention and recovery. Karen has a sound understanding of mental health issues for children and adults having previously worked as a mental health worker for 15 years. Karen is a mother of 4 children, two of whom are now adults.

Megan Bezuidenhout
Counsellor (Wellington)
Registered with NZAC

Megan has a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Psychology. She has a breadth of experience providing trauma counselling, child-centred play therapy and critical incident stress debriefing to clients from diverse backgrounds, who have experienced significant trauma in their lives. She understands the importance and power of mental wellbeing and focuses on a person-centred approach in her counselling.  Megan advocates for a holistic wellness approach, appreciating that each person's journey is deeply personal, guiding them to reconnect to their inner aliveness. In her counselling she focuses on areas such as of gaining self-esteem & confidence, overcoming grief and loss, and transitioning through life stages. 

Maria Cash
Counsellor (Wellington)
Provisional Member Registered with NZAC (previously full member of ACA, level 4)

Maria has a Diploma in Applied Counselling from NZ. She also has a Masters in Counselling from Australia, where she worked in a Family Relationship Centre and other centres. Maria is experienced in working with individuals and couples on a wide range of issues, e.g. depression, anxiety, anger, grief, trauma, and relationship issues (including abuse and separation). She is gentle and supportive as her clients explore their issues with her and move towards healing. She draws from a variety of counselling approaches and has an interest in neuroscience. Maria also speaks German.

Shanti Brown
Arts therapist (Porirua, Wellington)
Professional member of ANZACATA and Provisional Member of NZAC 

Shanti is an arts therapist currently working with children, teenagers and young adults. Shanti is passionate about providing a non-judgemental space for people to navigate the ups and downs that life brings. She incorporates art, mindfulness, and talking therapy to provide a holistic approach to wellbeing. (Please note - participants do not need any prior art-making experience). Shanti has a Masters of Arts in Arts Therapy (Clinical) from Whitecliffe College.

Fiona Ryland
Counsellor (Wellington)
Provisional member NZAC

Fiona has a Diploma in Counselling and has worked as a Counsellor for more than seven years. Five of these years were spent working with Tangata Te Whenua in Porirua. Fiona also works with Pasifika using the Fale fono model, and other cultures. Fiona has trained in working with trauma, male sexual abuse and anger management. She uses Transactional Analysis, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Constructive Narrative Therapy in her person-centred approach. Fiona, who has five children and seven grandchildren, works with children and teenagers. Other areas Fiona specialises in include grief and loss, depression, and domestic violence. Fiona is also a trained Budget Advisor.

Anne (Anna) Ortlepp
Drama therapist (Wellington)
Provisional member of ANZACATA

Anne is a qualified therapist from Germany with experience in working with children and adults and a strong interest in working with couples. In her work with children she uses creative ways like drawing, storytelling, imaginative play and props to help children explore and vent their feelings, problem-solve difficult situations and build self-esteem. Play and creativity often are the child's natural ways of communicating what is going on in their lives and inside them. Anne is trained to speak this special language. She is also currently training in Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), which is a well researched and highly effective couples therapy approach. She is engaged in a psychotherapy training here in NZ called Hakomi Psychotherapy.

Liz Riversdale
Counsellor (Wellington)

Liz has experience as a counsellor, leadership coach and facilitator. She works with people experiencing relationship challenges, stress, anxiety, loss, grief and change. Her approach to counselling is client centered, weaving in elements from other models such as CBT, internal family systems and somatic therapy. Liz supports clients to discover their own solutions, strengths and resources, to navigate through life's challenges. She has a masters degree in counselling.

Skylight Counselling is confidential, unless there is a serious risk of danger to the client and/or others.

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