Abi has worked therapeutically as a creative art and play therapist with children and families for over 12 years across different voluntary and statutory service settings including, a UK based charity providing specialist trauma services for children and their families who have experienced sexual violence, a West Sussex based Children and Families Trust (ACFT) offering therapeutic support in both primary and secondary schools and oversees charity based services.
Abi has a special interest in working with children who have experienced early adversity, trauma and neglect. Her passion for this work was originally kindled in the voluntary and charitable sectors where she gained a great deal of relationally rich experience and knowledge. She has worked in Romanian Orphanages, been involved in setting up a school foundation in Lesotho and a children’s centre in Brazil. She is especially passionate about incorporating her experience of working in such impoverished communities into her everyday work with children and the adults that care for them.
Abi believes that creative art and play therapy is a powerful vehicle through which children can safely express their unspoken hurts and often deeply confused feelings. She is very concerned to prioritise the needs and wishes of children in all her therapeutic work. This is reflected in her genuinely warm and playfully curious approach to therapy. In her work with children, her key aim is to create a therapeutic space that provides an explorative bridge to the inner world of a child that is both is nurturing and restorative. It is for this reason that Abi believes a strong therapeutic relationship is key in helping to grow a child’s capacity for relational connection and building resilience.
Abi finds it a great privilege that children share their inner world through the development of a trusting relationship. She endeavours to facilitate a child-centred and child-led, consistently safe and containing space to offer children the opportunity to explore with playful curiosity their world and their experiences within the world. The ‘wow’ factor of witnessing children knowing what they need to do in order to heal, continually amazes her.
Abi is a member of the British Association of Play Therapists (BAPT), who are accredited by the professional standards authority.