Purpose:

We exist to create a world where young people thrive, unrestricted by the challenges of mental and emotional wellbeing.

Private Counselling

The Parachute Project offers support via private counselling and within schools.

The support is offered in a child counselling format and is aimed at 6-18-year old’s who are struggling with issues such as anxiety, low mood, family and peer relationships, ASD and ADHD identity, and trauma. This will ensure that children are equipped with the tools to manage their own emotional wellbeing.

Mission:

We do this by harnessing young people’s emotional wellbeing, delivering the support and skills to overcome barriers, and achieve happiness and success.

Meet Abi

Qualified Social Worker

Abi founded The Parachute Project after spending nearly 25 years working professionally with children and families facing adversity, having heard parents/carers and professionals’ frustrations about the need for accessible early intervention for children with mental health and behavioural related issues, Abi’s mission is to deliver this service by providing psychoeducation at an early stage – improving emotional resilience in young people. Abi has used all her experience to put together unique programs of support that have been proven to bring about positive changes in young people’s self-esteem, resilience, and emotional wellbeing.

I qualified as a social worker in the year 2000 after initially leaving school and qualifying as a nursery nurse and spending some time working for the Local Authority with children with disabilities.

I love working with children of all ages and my key skills have always revolved around building meaningful relationships with young people and their families and effecting positive change in their lives. As a Social Worker I have specialized in 3 main areas: Safeguarding Children, Children with Disabilities and Children’s Mental Health. I have worked in London, Hertfordshire and Norfolk. I have been employed by Children’s Services in both social care and the education sectors as well as for the NHS within the CAMHS (Child Adolescent Mental Health Service). I have extensive further training and experience in the following areas: -Family assessment, risk assessment, self-harm, bullying, loss and bereavement, childhood trauma, ASD and ADHD, parenting, attachment and neurodevelopment, parent led CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy), DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy), restorative practice, child protection, childhood anxiety and creative and play therapies. I have combined all these skills to offer children support via private counselling and within schools

I believe that statutory services are potentially damaging young people by scaling their level of need and turning children away for not being” bad enough”, this is due to the services being underfunded. It Is also my opinion that if expert mental health education and support was more accessible in schools’ young people would become more resilient and have more positive outcomes. I believe that delivering my unique programs of support privately and in schools will help to reduce the numbers of young people whose names are on NHS waiting lists and ensure the right young people get the right level of support at the right time.

Abi also carries out independent social work assessments for both the local authority and in private law proceedings. Abi has had extensive experience working in the family court and is able to carry out both wishes and feelings work with children, parenting assessments and offer tailored support to families in these circumstances.

Meet Lucy

Mental Health Practitioner

Lucy worked as a family practitioner at Family Action for four years before joining The Parachute Project. This was following completing a Psychology degree with the Open University, covering modules such as childhood psychology, sports psychology, mental health, counselling and forensic psychology

Lucy has had voluntary placements with the one to one project and worked in areas of health psychology research at the University of East Anglia.

I take a holistic approach working with children and their families, I have additional training in motivational interviewing, solution focused therapy, family network training, dealing with parental conflict, attachment and brain development, understanding stress and anxiety in autism and understanding and supporting ADHD.

I am also a qualified British Horse Society accredited horse riding coach, and have taught many children to ride and coached them through times when they have felt nervous or unsure, building their confidence to be successful in their riding. This aspect transfers to my mental health interventions with children, encouraging and supporting them to see their full potential even when there are setbacks or challenges in their lives.
I trained to lead on Early Help Assessment and Plan (EHAP) meetings and have worked with many other agencies. Also working as a facilitator on the Solihull approach to parenting and have led groups with parents in the community and young people in schools.

Meet Sarah

Schools Program Developmental Practitioner

Sarah is a qualified teacher who has worked as a SENDCo and Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL). She has over 18 years’ experience working with children, specialising in teaching children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

I have volunteered working with children with SEND since I was a teenager, in particular supporting children who have an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) diagnosis.. Following on from my BSc in Psychology, I qualified as a primary school teacher in 2006 and have worked in both mainstream and special educational needs settings. I started my teaching career in class, and am skilled at rapport building with children, finding different ways to get to know individuals and allowing them the space and time needed to begin to trust that you are on their side. Working in a Specialist Provision for children with ASD and then going on to become a school Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENDCo) has enabled me to develop a good knowledge of SEND and the relevant statutory guidance.

My experience in schools and as a SEND and Safeguarding professional means I value the importance of early intervention and am vigilant to early warning signs and potential triggers in children and young people and advocate addressing concerns as soon as they are raised.

During my time as a SENDCo I noticed an increase in anxiety and Emotional School Based Absences since Covid and have extensive practise working closely with children who are facing difficulties attending school due to emotional distress. I have experience of working with children who are looked after by the local authority and the procedures needed to be adhered to. I have completed training in Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and trauma training and have been an in-school STEPS tutors. STEPS is a person-centred therapeutic approach to positive behaviour which prioritises emotional well-being and is adopted by many local authorities nationally, including Norfolk, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire. This role has provided me with a wealth of experience analysing children’s behaviour, enabling me to understand the causes of poor emotional wellbeing and put in place plans to address the needs presented by the children and/or young person.

Meet Freddie

Mental Health Practitioner

Freddie Towers is our developmental mental health practitioner. Freddie is passionate about the Parachute Projects ethos to support children’s mental health by supporting and empowering children. Freddie worked previously as a qualified SEN teaching assistant. She completed her CBT Essentials level 2 training in 2022 and is about to start her qualification to become an EFT Tapping practitioner. Freddie has a particular interest in supporting young people from the LGBTQ+ community. Freddie delivers school sessions and targeted one to one support to young people supervised by Abi. Freddie will continue her studying whilst working with us here at The Parachute Project.

Vision:

Our ultimate ambition is to empower young people to be resilient and shape a future without limitations.

We’re making a difference