The Team 2019-01-18T08:41:35+00:00

The Team

Dr Natasha D’Cruz is a Psychologist, practioner, trainer and researcher; and is a PhD in Psychology.

She is a practicing Psychologist/Psychotherapist and has been extensively trained by people from across the globe, to enhance her passion for creative arts and psychology with the use of Music, Dance, Drama and Art as Psychotherapy. She has also trained in the entire gamut of Cognitive and Behaviour Therapies, as well as Adlerian Psychotherapy. Her clientele ranges from ages 3 to 73 years. Dr D’Cruz is adept at handling cases across the developmental lifespan.

Ava Ichaporia is a qualified counsellor with a Masters in Counselling from the University of East Anglia (UEA), UK. She also holds a Diploma in Counselling from CYDA, Pune, and TISS, Mumbai. Formerly, she worked as a researcher on gender equality issues. She has counselled clients in the UEA Counselling Service and in private practice in Pune and Mumbai. She also is associated with TalkItOver counselling services in Bengaluru.

Ichaporia has volunteered in India and the UK on a student counselling helpline and a helpline for survivors of abuse. She has conducted workshops on the Diploma in Counselling at CYDA, Pune, and at the University of East Anglia. She believes that people possess the capacity to heal themselves and wants to support development of an individual’s resources. She practices in a person centred way using insights from focussing and mindfulness. She enjoys following food bloggers on Instagram, reading and taking walks.

Ms. Elaine Sequeira is a Psychologist and Trainer with a Masters in Clinical Psychology and Human Resource Management. She has eight years of experience in the educational sector and has taught the Masters and Bachelors programs with colleges under University of Pune and Amity University.

Ms. Sequeira has combined her unique expertise in clinical psychology as human resource management to offer programs and consultancy in the behavioural training industry.

She is working on promoting and initiating application based syllabi into the educational system and is playing a pivotal role in setting up new psychological ventures. She has a creative approach to life and actively looks to integrate psychology into it. Being socially inclined, she does her bit by contributing to the less privileged in society through skill empowerment.

Soonawala is a psychologist and remedial educator with a Masters in Clinical Psychology. She is extremely adept at dealing with children who have learning difficulties and her hands-on and nurturing deportment yields excellent results. Her warm and welcoming outlook allows children to explore and grow while learning.

Soonawala handles the training and development and helpline activities at the Reach Out to Life Foundation, which is a pro-life suicide prevention NGO. When not working with children, Soonawala assists other NGOs and organizations be it with animals, under privileged communities or the differently abled.

Mrs. Prabhjot Kaur is an Occupational Therapist with a Masters of Occupational Therapy in Neurosciences from All India Institute of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Mumbai and is certified in Dysphagia Rehabilitation. She specializes in hand therapy, cognitive perceptual training, splinting, functional rehabilitation, ergonomics, and social skills training. She satiates her curiosity to keep herself updated by conducting seminars, publishing her work in reputed journals, and attending workshops and conferences.

In her career of 7 years as an Occupational Therapist, she has received the GEM (Going an Extra Mile) award for service excellence at Max Hospital, Saket, Delhi, where she headed the team for Breast Cancer Rehabilitation as well. She has worked across domains of adult neuro-rehabilitation (including Stroke, Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis & Dementia) and pediatric rehabilitation in Cerebral Palsy, Spina Bifida, Autism Spectrum disorders, and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders to name a few.

Mr. Rishi Talwar is a Psychologist with a Masters in Clinical Psychology from the University of Pune. He has participated in numerous workshops to further enhance his training, knowledge and skills. He has interned at The Vidyasagar Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (VIMHANS Hospital), New Delhi and trained and volunteered with Connecting NGO as a psychologist on their suicide prevention helpline. Finding solace in animals and nature, he has also trained in Animal Assisted Therapy and Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy.

Since his early years, his desire to help those in need has directed his interests and consequently his career in mental health. He has experience working with individuals; those dealing with severe mental illness as well as those finding it difficult to cope with day-to-day stressors. Additionally, victims of abuse and those suffering traumatic events have found comfort and support from him.
With a keen interest in Sexuality and Gender, he has also worked with the Lesbian, Gay, Bi-Sexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex and Asexual (LGBTQIA) community.

Rishi is spiritually inclined and hopes to have a positive impact on those he comes across; enabling them to help themselves move, in a direction of their choice.

Niharica is a psychotherapist with a background in Clinical Psychology. Her urge to explore the relationship between mind, body and spirit has guided her own journey into psychology and psychotherapy. Her therapeutic work is inspired by her desire to bring more compassion and love into the world, by acknowledging and embracing all parts of one’s self. She firmly believes that joy, and feeling worthy are our birth rights, and strives to help people recognise beliefs that block them from experiencing this.

Her approach is Client-Centred and focussed on helping clients become more self-aware, build insights, and be empowered to deal with life in healthy ways. She emphasises the need to create a safe therapeutic environment in which the client feels comfortable exploring themselves. She works on addressing cognitive, emotional, behavioural and social concerns of clients by customising her therapeutic approach to cater to their needs. The therapies she commonly uses include Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, Neuro-Linguistic Programming, Visual Arts Therapy and Creative Movement Therapy. She facilitates therapy for individuals and groups, and has experience with family/couples counselling. She works mainly with clients struggling with anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts.

Nilima is a trained counselling psychologist with MA from SNDT University- Pune and Post Grad.Dip from Edith Cowan University-Australia. She started her career with specialization in designing and providing EAP services to the corporate world. She has over 7 years of counselling experience within corporate setup apart from her work as an individual practitioner.

Throughout her career, Nilima has harboured and nurtured a passion to work with children. She fulfilled this in various capacities from training in life skills, to designing complete mental health programs for children in foster care to developing the national adolescent education tool kit and more.

With the advent of motherhood, Nilima’s professional and personal journey, took a significant detour. A short course in ‘Indian Psychology’ from IPI-Puducherry brought a new perspective in her understanding of human life and human behaviour. From 2011 – 2015 she immersed herself in the study of Indian Psychology, broadly based on the works of Sri Aurobindo’s and The Mother.

Today Nilima practices psychotherapy with a deep rooted connect in spirituality. Her professional endeavours can be divided into three streams of work.

First, the project most close to her heart, MatRi-Space. In 2015 she founded MatRi-Space, an evolving community learning center with an aspiration to “Supporting Motherhood and Celebrating Childhood”.

Second, she is dedicated to developing and redefining pedagogies in early childhood education with an emphasis and integration of Indian traditions, culture and ethos.  

And thirdly in her role as psychotherapist she embraces an eclectic approach with emphasis on theories from Indian Psychology, REBT and Person Centered Therapy. Her strength lies in working with her clients life challenges while developing ‘self-awareness and embarking on the journey of “self-transformation’.

Avanti Malhotra is a mental health counselor with a Masters in Applied Psychology, Mental Health Counseling from NYU. She believes authenticity, consistency, and creating a safe holding space effectively bring out an individual’s capacity to confront and heal themselves. By working through childhood patterns in this safe therapeutic relationship, the process of change can begin.

Avanti has worked across a breadth of topics, such as relationship conflicts, grief, depression, anxiety, trauma, suicide attempts, addiction, and LGBTQAI issues. She was also part of the team that created Teen Talk India, a mental health resource for teenagers. She has conducted several mental health awareness seminars and stress management sessions with corporates and professionals. One of her passion projects is being part of a team that is working on building a podcast on mental health – which she is very excited about! When Avanti isn’t consumed with mental health, she spends her time with a good book, or doing yoga, and is almost always thinking about avocados.

Prathiksha Vaidhyanathan is a RCI registered speech language pathologist and audiologist with a masters degree -MASLP from Bharati Vidyapeeth Deemed University, Pune and a bachelor degree BASLP from Dr.Chandrashekar Institute of Speech and Hearing, Bangalore.
Her speciality is in the following areas:

  • Assessing and identifying the cause of communication difficulty in children,adolescents and adults.
  • Devise and deliver a tailor made therapy plan, working on a one-to-one basis and a group setting thereby to enable each of the clients to improve as much as possible.
  • Monitor and evaluate clients’ progress and make appropriate referrals when necessary.
  • Counseling parents, care takers, guardians, teachers, etc.
  • Worked extensively with chlidren and adults who present with communication and swallowing difficulties post a neurological trauma.
  • Have done extensive research work on adult with dysarthria and swallowing difficulties.

Roma Fernandes has a Masters in Clinical Psychology with 7 years of experience. After working in Oman she is now practicing in India with the hopes to continue learning and to provide the best Mental Health services with the aim of not all counselling her clients to be the best they can be but also to educate people about Psychology and to remove the stigma attached with it. She is also trained in Clinical Hypnotherapy and Life coaching and hopes that her clients receive an holistic approach with their treatment. Being a Corporate Trainer she also conducts workshops and training programs. The clients that she sees varies from Individual counselling for Stress, Anxiety, Depression as well as Couples and Family Counselling.

Tanya has a Masters’ degree in Counselling for Mental Health and Wellness (Applied Psychology) from New York University. She has experience providing individual, family and group counselling to children, adolescents and young adults dealing with a wide range of mental health issues such as trauma, anxiety, stress, depression, self-harm, interpersonal difficulties, body image issues and bullying. She has also worked as a counsellor in a school setting providing support to children and adolescents with special needs as well as academic, social and emotional difficulties.

Tanya takes a strengths-based and client-centered approach to therapy and creates a safe space for her clients to open up in session. She believes that building a strong client-therapist relationship is important in order for therapy to be successful. She uses cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) interventions along with visual art, drama and play therapy techniques to help clients reach their goals.  Tanya is also pursuing a graduate diploma in Expressive Arts Therapy from Women’s Christian College in Chennai.

Wendy Burby holds a Masters in Transcultural Counselling from the University of Malta. She has worked with clients across age groups conducting both individual as well as group sessions. She has specific training in understanding and dealing with diversity within the therapeutic relationship. She has experience working within Schools. Employee Support Teams, Eating Disorders Clinics as well as standard counselling spaces.

Shweta Shahade is a qualified psychologist and a remedial educator with a Masters in Clinical Psychology and Applied Child Psychology from SNDT University, Pune and Nottingham Trent University, UK, respectively. She has worked extensively with children of all age groups as well as adolescents who have learning as well as behavioural disabilities. She believes in the uniqueness and individuality of every single person and thus creates modules and programs that fit the learning styles of each particular child. She believes in an exploratory approach at working with children, where children use all available senses and resources to learn from the world around them.
Shweta also works with children from Urdu and Marathi medium schools where she facilitates an English Enhancement and Creativity program for the students. She is an ardent animal lover and a trained Canine Behaviourist who regularly involves therapy dogs during her sessions. She is a strong believer in instilling kindness and sensitivity along with inculcating new and improved techniques from around the world into her therapy sessions. A music lover and writer in her spare time, she looks at therapy as an interactive experience which benefits the therapist just as much as it helps the child and the parents.