Presenters are listed in alphabetical order.
Presenters Conference 2022
|Info||Friday or Saturday|
Jo AmesWhen dial up internet was a reality and encryption was an aspiration, Jo developed and provided online counselling services. Initially this was in response to the children and young people who contacted her via ‘MSN or Yahoo chat’ at the youth service where she worked in the late 90’s/early 2000’s. This was an increasing request, as a preferred method of communication by young people. As a direct result and with strong reservations, Jo embarked on online therapy training (with OLT) believing that while it may be helpful to communicate in this way – it was not ‘real counselling’. During a clinical supervision session with Anne Stokes, as part of that training, the potency and impact of therapeutic relating online became a reality.
Since that ‘Aha’ moment in time, Jo has worked with the BACP to create the Online and Phone Therapies (OPT) Competencies Framework, written a few articles, a book chapter, chaired ACTO, presented and supported others interested in developing their own online practices either in a private or organisational settings.
It is an honour to accept the opportunity to be alongside the pioneers of online therapy for the ACTO 2022 event and to be in the company of those who are interested in good practice and the history leading up to the present day.
|Jo will be a panelist Friday evening.|
Basi is an accredited Integrative counselling therapist having qualified with a master’s in counselling children. She has an employment background in domestic abuse, family and parent work that led her to becoming a therapist. She enjoys working online as a therapist and clinical supervisor in private practice. She works in schools, is a trainer and consults. She is a registered and accredited member of the BACP, a professional Member and Director of ACTO and a qualified Clinical Supervisor. Internationally, she is an Associate Member of the BSP (Barbados Society of Psychology). She is passionate about shared therapeutic experiences and research from a more cultural and global perspectives as she feels this brings an enriching and more open dynamic when working with children, young people and families.
|Basi will interview Gracy during the workshop on Saturday|
Gracy Andrew is the first level 3 ACTO registered online therapist based in Goa, India. She is also Special Advisor for CorStone an international organization that implements personal resilience programs for low income communities and is a tutor at the Academy for Online therapy. She works with children and young people and their families as well as adult populations and is passionate about the role of research in evidencing online.
|Gracy will conduct a workshop on Saturday together with Basi|
Workshop title: Adult Autism: Unexplored Territory
Trainers: Vauna Beauvais and Eoin Stephens
Organisation: Vanguard Neurodiversity Training and Therapy Services
In our therapy work, many of us are increasingly finding ourselves working with clients who have made the discovery, as an adult, that they are autistic. This discovery can help them make a lot of sense of their life experiences and struggles, but they may need informed professional help to do so.
Some of us are currently discovering, in collaboration with our autistic clients, creative approaches to this essential work, and we will be giving a brief introduction to this new and exciting territory in
Topics covered include:
MSc Psychotherapy, Certified Transactional Analyst, Certified Cybertherapist, PGCDip Counselling. UKCP registered Psychotherapist.
Vauna is a Psychotherapist, Coach, Trainer, and Clinical Supervisor. She has been seeing clients for over 20 years in private practice, and for 4 years in NHS primary care, and now works solely online. Discovering herself, at over 40 years old, that she is Autistic with ADHD, she turned her interest toward understanding neurodiversity and working well with neurodivergent clients. As well as drawing on lived experience, and the insights from some small courses, she is embarking on a postgraduate study of Autism from Autumn 2022.
|Vauna will conduct a workshop on Saturday together with Eoin|
Jimmy Brennan - Tacklit
I am Jimmy, one of the senior leaders at Tacklit. After 20 years in the world of retail banking I moved over to Mental Health due to my own struggles. Having gone through therapy for many years I found that Tacklit was something very special, that would enable me to give back to therapists what they have given to me, and to also assist them in helping more people in this world where mental health is a global pandemic.
The demand for online therapy has increased so much in the past 2 years, and yet the technology to manage your practice hasn’t really caught up to the needs of therapists or their clients.
Most software out there is built for small businesses, and therapists are forced to make it work for their mental health practices, forcing different systems to work together, while navigating GDPR and security concerns.
This webinar is for ACTO members, and hosted by our friends at Tacklit. Tacklit is an online platform designed as an end-to-end mental health platform, by therapists, for therapists.
In this webinar we’ll look at what an end-to-end mental health platform means to online therapists, and their clients:
|Jimmy will present on Saturday|
Elaine DaviesThis short presentation will revisit my remote experience at the time of last years conference. I will then move forward with lessons learned, conflict of interests and some ideas of how I can continue to grow and progress in the online field.
|Elaine will give a member presentation on Saturday|
Hilary Davies is an HCPC-registered Music Therapist, currently working freelance primarily with autistic adults. She is also studying for a PhD in Music Therapy at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. Hilary has an MA in Music Therapy (with distinction) from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and an MA (Cantab.) in Music from the University of Cambridge (Gonville and Caius College). Prior to re-training as a music therapist she worked for over a decade as a professional musician and music teacher.
Description of presentation
This presentation will provide an introduction to the history and current practice (from a Neurodiversity-affirmative perspective) of Music Therapy, an established psychological intervention delivered by HCPC-registered therapists. Music therapy can be especially useful for clients for whom expressing themselves verbally is a challenge, or when talking about particular topics is difficult: the therapeutic process usually involves the therapist and client making music together, although no prior experience of playing music is necessary. This presentation will explore how music therapy offers clients:
There will be a particular focus on online work with autistic adults, including those who have been recently diagnosed. Examples will be given of a variety of methods used in music therapy, and how they are applied in therapeutic work.
|Hilary will present a workshop on Saturday|
My name is Olivia Djouadi and I am a UKCP member and a graduate of Regents University in Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy. I also trained with IMT Integrative Mindbody Therapy, a type of Body Therapy with Dr. Asaf Rolef Ben-Shahar. I also trained with OLT online counselling for therapists and did the general, diploma and DOTS course so I can practice as an online supervisor.
Presently I work a lot with those that have experienced trauma including those who have survived and escaped from cults. I also work with chronic illness as there seems to be a link between childhood trauma and chronic illness in adulthood. In 2019 I gave a talk on captivity at the International Cultic Studies Association conference in Manchester. I have also given talks on DID, polyfragmented DID, Diabulimia, Cultural Therapy, Cults and a range of other topics at Onlinevents. I also spoke on chronic illness/ autoimmune conditions at OCTIA a few years ago where I would meet many of my online counselling colleagues. I contributed a chapter about working creatively with chronic conditions in the book Online Supervision.
Bring together our differences and similarities so we don't fall through the cracks.
It has seemed through the pandemic and after there has been both unity online which helped some in a way that helped loneliness and outlining the things that still need to change. As we slowly come back into a normal way of life there is still room for unity online so others feeling left behind dont feel forgotten. There has also been a focus on finding unity in groups that pertain to issues that still need resolving within the GGRRAAACCEEESSS model which stands for - Gender, Geography, Race, Religion, Age, Ability, Appearance, Culture, Class/caste, Education, Employment, Ethnicity, Spirituality, Sexuality and Sexual orientation. [This is an older model but is still important today.]
|Olivia will host a workshop on Saturday|
Ellie Finch, MA, MBACP (Accred) is a counsellor and social worker who specialises in supporting parents and siblings of children with additional needs. She provides consultancy and training to professionals and organisations who wish to use video games in their practice.
“Gaming as a Tool for Therapy”
Do you have clients who love video games such as Minecraft, Roblox and Fortnite? Do you want to be able to engage more with their interests? Are you thinking about playing these games with your clients? This presentation will provide key information about these games so that you feel more confident talking about them with clients and even playing them together in sessions. Video games can be helpful tools to engage clients in therapy as they offer a rich environment for therapeutic elements such as connection, social skills learning, creativity, use of metaphor, and role playing. No gaming experience necessary.
|Ellie will host a workshop on Saturday|
Carole is a Counselling Psychologist whose doctoral research had some interesting things to suggest regarding the experience of therapists who moved from f2f to online provision. She continues to offer therapy, supervision and bespoke trainings in the area of ethical and efficacious online communications, as well as much needed wellbeing workshops.
As the 2020 pandemic struck Carole was involved with Onlinevents in offering support and guidance to worried and displaced therapists. She also supports the National Online Safety organisation and gets involved with providing resources for young people, parents and teachers in negotiating the sometimes hidden nuances of the online world.
Carole has recently become involved in the set up of a BPS Counselling Psychology Digital Health workstream which aims to dovetail with other networks, and add something positive to the ever changing landscape we live in.
|Carole will be a panelist Friday evening|
Stephen GossStephen will give us a brief overview of where online therapy is heading in the coming years.
Stephen Goss, PhD, is the Research Director of the Online Therapy Institute, and a tutor, supervisor and researcher. Until recently he was also Head of Clinical Evaluation and Investigation at Limbic AI and previously ran a doctoral programme at the Metanoia Institute in London. His clinical supervision specialises in technologically mediated provision and consultancy and research into service improvement and innovation. Co-author of the original BACP guidelines on online therapy, his extensive list of other publications includes Evidence Based Counselling and Psychological Therapies, Research and Applications (Routledge, 2000), Technology in Counselling and Psychotherapy, A Practitioner's Guide (Palgrave, 2003) and The Use of Technology in Mental Health (CC Thomas, 2016). He is also a Consulting Editor of the British Journal of Guidance and Counselling which he co-Edited until 2020.
|Stephen will be a panelist on Friday evening and will present on Saturday.|
Terry HanleyTerry Hanley is a Professor in Counselling Psychology at the University of Manchester. He is a HCPC Registered Counselling Psychologist and a Fellow of both the BPS and the Higher Education Academy. He is editor of The SAGE Handbook of Counselling and Psychotherapy (Sage, 2017), co-author of Introducing Counselling and Psychotherapy Research (Sage, 2013) and lead editor of text Adolescent Counselling Psychology (Routledge, 2013). He has been researching web-based therapy with children and young people for over 20 years and has a growing interest in the use of artificial intelligence in the caring professions. Follow him on twitter @drterryhanley.
It is not that long ago that online therapy was a fringe activity within the counselling and psychotherapy worlds. However, Covid-19 has changed the landscape in which therapists work and, as a consequence, the counselling professions have had to come to terms with the brave new world that they find themselves. This presentation will take a step back from these (partially) enforced changes and reflect upon the body of research focusing upon the practise of online therapy. It will outline some of the key research underpinning this work, notably looking at why people attend therapy online, what it tells us about the quality of the relationships that are created, and whether web-based therapy works, before highlighting questions about the directions that it is heading. Without spoiling the ending, the rain may have gone, but there are certainly obstacles in the way and dark clouds in the sky.
Following on from his Plenary Presentation, Terry will hold an open workshop on Research into online therapy.
This is an opportunity to discuss what research is showing about our work - including Terry’s own work
It is also an opportunity to talk to Terry about how to conduct research.
|Terry will present and lead a workshop on Saturday.|
About the presentation:
I will share my insights and learning from managing the National Telephone and Online Counselling Service for adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse on behalf of the specialist sexual abuse charity, Safeline. This service has been running since 2016 and we provide trauma-informed therapy via telephone, video, instant messaging and email to adults across England and Wales.
I have worked with couples and individuals for many years in both private practice and for organisations such as universities and charities. I have been working with survivors of sexual abuse for the past ten years with the specialist charity Safeline and have been managing the National Telephone and Online Counselling Service for adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse since 2016. I also manage the National Male Survivor Helpline and Online Service for any adult or child who identifies as male and for those who support a male survivor affected by sexual violence in England and Wales.
In my private work I now focus on working with couples online helping them to explore their issues and have those difficult conversations and improve their communication and understanding of themselves and each other. My cockapoo Lenny is my trusted buddy who sits near me all day and takes me out for walks!
|Liz will be giving a member presentation on Saturday|
Through illustrative examples of work with a client, I will show how Music Imagery Therapy works. This is a depth-oriented music psychotherapy method, which works very effectively online. Some music used in a session and the imagery evoked for this client will be shared to illustrate how unconscious material is brought into awareness. The aesthetic and unique qualities inherent in music will be reflected on to show how the music when listened to in a deeply relaxed state is integral to the client’s psychotherapeutic process the benefits of offering this work online will also be shared
I am a qualified music therapist registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and a member of the Association of Music and Imagery (AMI). I am qualified as a Fellow of the Association of Music and Imagery (FAMI) having done an in depth training in Guided Imagery and Music (GIM). I also have a diploma in couples therapy.
I have 30 years experience working as a music therapist with a diverse range of client groups, mostly adults, in a variety of settings. I have worked for over 15 years within the National Health Service in the UK and was instrumental in setting up and developing an Arts Psychotherapies department for adult mental health, taking the lead role for 7 years.
Now, my work is in private practice with Music Imagery Therapy and also Couples Therapy, and I have worked in private practice for over 12 years. I am based in Bristol, UK and I offer sessions online using zoom with enhanced security and optimum audio settings for music.
|Helen will give a member presentation on Saturday|
Dr. DeeAnna Merz Nagel is a licensed psychotherapist and board certified coach in the United States. In addition to her specializations in telemental health and online coaching, she teaches the ethical integration of alternative and psychospiritual approaches in practice. DeeAnna holds several certifications in the healing arts. She is co-founder of Online Therapy Institute and provides training, consultation and clinical supervision across the globe. DeeAnna’s doctoral studies focused on multifaith spiritual direction.
|DeeAnna will be a panelist on Friday evening|
I have been a therapist for 38 years and began working online in 1998. I was a founder
member of ACTO after completing my MA dissertation exploring the therapeutic relationship
I have trained counsellors and sex therapists for Relate since 1990, and online counsellors
working in text from 2007 -2016. Relate's live chat and email service which I co-developed
was government funded and grew to provide 20000 live chat sessions a year. In 2012, I
established Therapy Institute which provides training to work with couples , a diploma in
working with sex addiction and working online. I am currently Chair of ATSAC and Director
of Emotional Wellbeing Group-a non profit providing online and face to face counselling at
low cost/ no cost.
Stephanie Palin MA|BSc(Hons)|Dip PST|
BACP COSRT ATSAC
Chair Association for the Treatment of Sexual Addiction and Compulsivity
|Stephanie will be on the panel on Friday evening|
Title: Health apps: the good, the bad and the ugly: how a lack of development and distribution of evaluation standards is preventing the potential of health apps
If you can think of an ailment, concern, or any aspect of your health and wellbeing that you wish to monitor or improve, you can be certain that there already exists an app for it. What is uncertain however, is whether these apps will work as advertised, and whether first and foremost, they will ‘first do no harm?’.
Yet despite the significant potential for health apps to enhance the efficient and timely delivery of healthcare, there are currently numerous drawbacks. This is because unlike established therapeutic options, including pharmaceuticals, there exists no clear guidance to app developers to understand what is expected, and what evidence should be collected, in order to demonstrate the efficacy and value of health apps.
It is clear that setting a high standard for health apps from the outset is vital to achieving long-term benefit to both patients and the health system globally. In this session, Liz Ashall-Payne, CEO at ORCHA, will outline what is happening across the globe in this space and how best practice can be achieved.
The Organisation for the Review of Care and Health Apps (ORCHA) is the world’s leading independent digital health evaluation and distribution organisation. It helps health and care organisations to deliver the right digital health apps, to the right people, at the right time. Its unique insight, assessment, and implementation services are improving the health of the population, the health of our health systems and the health of the health app ecosystem.
ORCHA conducts reviews for government organisations across Europe, the Middle East, the Americas and Australasia.
In the UK, ORCHA conducts reviews for Health Education England, CQC, NICE NHS Digital and NHS providers in 70% of regions.
|Liz will present on Saturday.|
About the workshop:
Lesley will use a selection of applications in her workshop, to explore how traditional frameworks can help us to adapt our online practices and support us as we discover exciting ways to use immersive technology in the virtual therapy space.
Lesley is an experienced Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist. After a successful career in marketing, she explored a long-held passion for music and the creative arts which led to her completing her psychotherapy training at the Institute for Arts in Therapy and Education.
Lesley is also dedicated to raising the profile of neurodiversity, especially amongst ethnic minorities, and upholding the rights of care-experienced young people. For several years she worked for a national UK charity as a young people’s advocate and independent mental health advocate.
She has run her private practice since 2017, supporting children, young people, and parents and she has worked completely online as a cyber-psychotherapist from a virtual playroom since 2020. Her work is focussed on the impact of trauma and developmental deficit on emotional wellbeing and her framework combines neuroscience, digital creative arts, and a blend of the physical and virtual worlds to deliver playful, immersive interventions.
Lesley is a qualified and experienced speaker and trainer, and she designs and delivers her own range of cyber-creativity workshops and training programmes. Her goal is to help mental health professionals to gain IT skills and confidence for online creative arts therapy.
|Lesley will host a workshop on Saturday|
Workshop title: Adult Autism: Unexplored Territory
Trainers: Vauna Beauvais and Eoin Stephens
Organisation: Vanguard Neurodiversity Training and Therapy Services
BA Psychology, Dip Counselling, MA Cognitive-Behavioural Counselling, MIACP, MACI.
Eoin is an Irish Counsellor/Psychotherapist and Trainer who has worked in the areas of Disability, Addiction Treatment, Training, and Counselling/Psychotherapy. He has been in private practice for over 30 years, using a Humanistic, Pragmatic approach to Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. After specialising primarily in the areas of Behavioural Addictions and Anxiety Disorders for a number of years, and working at a senior level in Counselling/Psychotherapy education, his work is currently focused on understanding the problems faced by autistic adults, and their specific therapeutic needs. He is autistic himself, having made the discovery nearly 10 years ago, well into adulthood.
|Eion will host a workshop together with Vauna on Saturday|
I was a senior accredited BACP counsellor, a supervisor and trainer and directed Online Training Ltd. With my co-director, Gill Jones, we founded the Online Counselling and Therapy In Action conferences and were instrumental in setting ACTO up.
Working with BACP, I produce a curriculum for Distance Therapy and have written and edited several books concerned with online counselling and supervision.
My time now is divided between homes in England and France, which was much easier pre Covid and Brexit!
Covid catapulted me out of retirement as so many counselling services needed their counsellors to be trained to work online. I am now endeavouring to redress the balance once more.
For many years, I lectured part-time at Bristol University and also with the University of Malta.
Pulling it all together
In this closing address, I want us to stand back and consider the strengths and weaknesses of the position of both Online Therapy and you as an individual at this moment in 2020.
|Anne will be a panelist Friday evening and will present on Saturday.|
Constant change is here to stay: where next in online therapy?
We usually say that death and taxes are the two things that are certain in life but an equal constant is change … which occurs in every moment of our lives. Our ability to deal with change determines so much of how we cope (or not) with life. Over the last 40 or so years this has extended to all matters digital: how we communicate as, how we work and how we live.
Therapy is inevitably entwined with life and digital aspects have crept into all realms of therapy and changed much of how we manage therapy.
Online therapy takes change in therapy to a whole new level which threatens some therapists and excites others.
Whilst these changes can lead us to futuristic ideas, algorithms, avatars and artificial intelligence in fact many of the changes required in online therapy are much more basic around safety, creating therapeutic presence, worrying about cross border issues just to raise a few areas.
As a profession we have a long way to go to consolidate all the changes that have, are and will take place and Pip will aim to raise a few examples of these including some ethical issues that go along with these, and discuss how the profession might move forward rooted in competence levels appropriate to the work we do and the ethical frameworks we adhere to.
Ultimately all therapy is for the client and wherever the future takes us it’s important that it is rooted in improving the client centred experience.
I am Director of the Harley Street Online Therapy Centre providing online therapy and online supervision. I am an Association for Counselling and Therapy Online (ACTO) Level 3 Senior Professional Member, and an ACTO Honorary Fellow and former Vice Chair. I am also a registered member of the BACP.
I also teach a diploma course in online therapy, and a second one in online supervision and I am Principal of The Academy for Online Therapy. I work closely with therapists working with NHS Trusts, businesses, universities and also provide consultation to many organisations academic, commercial and health.
I am author/editor of Psychotherapy 2.0: where Psychotherapy and Technology Meet (Karnac, 2014) as well as series editor for the Karnac Psychotherapy 2.0 series which include Online Supervision: a handbook for practitioners.
In my spare time I am a keen but amateur paddleboarding, owner of a narrowboat, and love watching cricket and play for Southwick Sheilas and play tennis rather over ambitiously for my standard!. I have two Westies, Betty & Daisy. I speak fairly fluent French. I have been a Rotarian since 1997 and am President Elect of the Brighton & Hove Soiree Rotary Club..
I can be contacted at email@example.com. +44 7880 501 116.
|Philippa will be a panelist Friday evening and will present on Saturday.|
'Voices flowing through cyberspace - sharing the revelations, uncertainties, and wonders of our experiences online'.
Sarah Worley-James is a BACP Senior accredited counsellor, supervisor and trainer with 25 years’ experience in the public, private and third sectors. She is former chair of ACTO and Senior Counsellor at Cardiff University. She is a senior tutor at the Academy for Online Therapy and author of Online Counselling - an essential guide, out shortly by PCCS books
Sarah is passionate about online counselling, setting up the online service at Cardiff University in 2011 and contributing to the BACP’s initial response to the COVID 19 pandemic in 2020. She has had a regular column about online counselling, ‘Cyberwork’, in the BACP Workplace journal since 2016 and published a series of articles about the process of setting up an university online counselling service in the BACP AUCC journal in (2017).
Sarah’s counselling career began in the substance misuse field, where she first developed her teaching and supervision skills, training professionals in Motivational Interviewing and writing and teaching a BACP accredited counselling diploma. She has also worked in employee counselling for many years, including when she moved into higher education counselling in 2009, counselling staff and students. It was here that she first developed her passion for online counselling, noticing that few universities were offering this, whilst being convinced that students would benefit from the potential for online counselling to provide a safer and creative way to enter into therapy.
|Sarah will be a panelist Friday evening and be presenting a workshop on Saturday|
Dr Wright is a consultant psychiatrist in medical psychotherapy specialising in CBT, EMDR, Psychosexual, and Couple therapies. He led the Newham IAPT National Demonstration Site and was the Lead Clinician of the Newham IAPT Service till 2010. He was subsequently the Lead Clinician of an integrated primary care mental health service in Richmond until 2021. In parallel, he was the senior clinical informatician for East London NHS Foundation Trust from 2012 to 2022, when he retired as the Chief Clinical Digital Officer. He has a particular clinical interest in the treatment of trauma. He is a Trustee of the EMDR UK Association Board and chair of the Scientific and Research Committee of the Association. He is an Honorary Senior Lecturer at City, University of London and at Queen Mary, University of London. He is visiting Assistant Professor at NOVA Medical School Lisbon.
Dr Wright will give a keynote on the current state of digital access, in the general population and for those with mental ill health. He will give examples of the successful enablement of digital access and the consequence in terms of clinical outcomes, both generally and specifically for EMDR.
|Ben will be holding a presentation on Saturday|