Our Team of Psychology & Wellbeing Specialists

Meet our team of mental health and wellbeing specialists below.

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Hawkes Bay

Brylee Lamb – NZ Registered Psychologist in the Clinical and Neuropsychological Scope of Practice

Brylee completed her training in 2010.  She highly experienced in working with a wide range of psychological difficulties.  Her particular area of focus is working with dissociation and trauma – whether this be significant developmental trauma or the cumulative impact of a lifetime of traumatic events.

Brylee works predominantly with adults and adolescents.  With a client first and whole person approach, Brylee draws upon a range of evidence-based modalities.  These include EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), TCTSY (Trauma Centre Trauma Sensitive Yoga), ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy) and DBT (Dialectical Behaviour Therapy).

Brylee is the clinical lead for our team and is based in the Napier office.

Dr. Aleisha Atkin – NZ Registered Psychologist in the Clinical Scope of Practice

Aleisha has been a clinical psychologist since 2010 having worked in Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom before making New Zealand her home five years ago. Aleisha supports people affected by a variety of psychological difficulties including anxiety, mood disorders, as well as trauma in adolescents and adults. Aleisha has also worked in acute hospital settings, community mental health centres, and private practice.

Aleisha was previously a Triple P ‘Positive Parenting Program’ trainer across Australia, Canada, and the UK, which means Aleisha can provide expert advice to parents on parenting issues. She also offers training packages for a wide range of psychological topics for children and adults. 

Aleisha is available for court reporting and has experience in providing psychological assessments and reports for adults appearing in the criminal or family court.  Aleisha uses multiple therapy modalities, depending on her clients’ needs.

Her most common therapies are acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), and eye movement desensitisation reprocessing (EMDR).  She works out of our Napier and Hastings offices.

Dr Melissa Grouden – NZ Registered Psychologist in the Clinical and Neuropsychological Scopes of Practice

Melissa is a qualified clinical psychologist who has experience working and supporting people in mental health, correctional, forensic, and developmental disability areas. She’s trained in cognitive behaviour therapy, eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy, solution-focused brief therapy, and acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT).

Melissa has a particular interest in assisting clients in working through traumatic experiences using EMDR as she finds being alongside clients as they do such important work to be especially rewarding.  Melissa uses EMDR with clients who are grieving the loss of a loved one, as this approach seems to be very useful in softening the distressing memories associated with the loss and enabling clients to move through the mourning process.

Melissa enjoys using an ACT approach with clients who have anxiety or depression to assist them in identifying and working towards meaningful and valued lives. Melissa works mainly with adults, but does also work with adolescents, finding it particularly rewarding to be able to support young people in navigating important life transitions as they begin to identify what they value most, and want their lives to be about.

Melissa works with adults and adolescents and is based in our Napier and Hastings offices.

Kym Young – Bachelor of Applied Social Sciences, Psychotherapy; Dip.Integrative Psychology (Hakomi): Member Registered with New Zealand Assn of Counsellors

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Kym provides counselling and therapy for people of all ages. Her areas of expertise are sexual abuse, trauma, depression, anxiety, life transitions, grief and working with parents and their children with sexually harmful behaviours. Kym works from a collaborative, holistic approach that recognises the value that mind, body, spirit, emotions and whānau have on our overall wellbeing.

Kym works from a variety of evidence-based modalities such as Trauma Focussed-CBT, Acceptance and Commitment therapy (ACT), Dialectical Behavioural Therapy and Hakomi (Body Somatic psychotherapy), along with incorporating creative approaches in her therapy.

Kym works from our offices in Napier and Hastings.

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Matt Collier – Bachelor of Counselling, Certificate of Supervision, Basic training EMDRIA, Advanced training EMDRNZ

Matt is a full member of NZAC and EMDRNZ and his practice includes mindfulness, EMDR, CBT, and narrative approaches.

He has worked with Red Cross Refugee Trauma Recovery, supporting refugees who have experienced persecution, war, and torture.

At the NZ Aids Foundation, Matt worked with client issues including depression, anxiety, relationship issues, sexual identity, gender identity, sexual health, and living with an HIV diagnosis.

He volunteered at Pomare Union Health Hutt Valley, and in this role worked with client issues including, depression, anxiety, insomnia, sexual trauma, and refugee experience.

Matt also worked as an intern at Wesley Inner City Counselling Service, with client issues including depression, anxiety, familial violence, and sexual trauma and was also an intern at the Community Alcohol and Drug Service, and Opiate Treatment Service CCDHB.

Matt works with adults and adolescents and is based in our Napier and Hastings offices.

Juanita Heath – NZ Registered Psychologist in the Clinical and Neuropsychological Scopes

Juanita gained her registration as a clinical psychologist in 1998.  She spent 22 years working for residential and hospital based rehabilitation services as part of a MDT providing services to individuals with traumatic brain injury and other complex health conditions.  Her work in these settings included undertaking neuropsychological assessment, providing behavioural support services, pain management and specific therapy for individuals and their families. 

Since moving to Hawkes Bay in 2010, Juanita has provided community based psychological therapy services.  She completed further training in advanced therapy approaches for individuals with single incident trauma, sexual abuse and complex trauma and is an accredited EMDR clinician.

Juanita has expertise and interest in a number of areas including trauma, brain  injury rehabilitation, adjustment to illness and disability and complex trauma.  She uses a range of evidence based therapy techniques including ACT, CBT and EMDR.

Juanita works with adults ana adolescents and is based in the Napier and Hastings offices.

Hannah Kitchin – NZ Registered Psychologist in the Clinical Scope of Practice

Hannah is a clinical psychologist who has previously worked with children, adolescents and families in a public setting. Since starting with Gains, Hannah has also enjoyed working with adults for individual therapy.

Hannah completes assessments for neurodevelopmental difficulties such as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder and intellectual disability. She also provides assessments and interventions for those with mental health difficulties such as anxiety and depression. As a clinical psychologist, Hannah completes thorough assessments that involves gathering information from multiple sources and in multiple formats. This allows assessment reports to be as detailed and accurate as possible.

Hannah has a passion for helping clients understand why difficulties have arisen and how they are being maintained. This understanding is the foundation of individualised interventions that have clear rationales. The kinds of interventions Hannah primarily uses include parent training approaches, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).  Hannah places importance on engaging clients in culturally appropriate ways. She is open to incorporating clients cultural and/or religious protocols where possible such as utilising Karakia or prayer to open and close sessions.  

Hannah works from the Napier and Hastings Offices.

Judy Shinnick – Graduate Diploma in Counselling, Post Graduate Diploma in CBT, Master of Health Science

Judy has extensive experience in the health, teaching and counselling fields. She was originally a registered nurse and retrained as a counsellor while living in Auckland. She has taught on the Bachelor of Counselling program at MIT and at the Master of Health Practice – Population Mental Health at the University of Auckland.

Judy has worked clinically in Private Practice and for Procare in Auckland. She works from a variety of evidence-based modalities such Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment therapy (ACT), and Client Centred therapy.

She provides counselling and therapy for adults. Her areas of expertise are depression, anxiety, life transitions, grief and couples.

Judy works from the Napier and Hastings Offices.

Antonia Banks - NZ Registered Psychologist in the Educational scope of practice

Antonia has been working with children, adolescents and their families, in government and private practice settings, since beginning her journey as a Psychologist. Her work has involved completing neurodevelopmental and diagnostic assessments (specialising in Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder – FASD), providing behavioural support services and individualised therapeutic intervention.

Antonia prides herself on being friendly and authentic and has genuine empathy for others’ difficulties. Her caring style aims at establishing a safe and non-judgemental environment in which clients can feel heard and supported. She has special interests in working with those who have experienced trauma or struggle with anxiety or disordered eating. 

Antonia uses an integrated approach to therapy, providing different treatment approaches which are tailored to each young person.  Most common are elements of acceptance and commitment therapy, cognitive behavioural therapy and mindfulness-based interventions.

Antonia works from our Napier office.


Melissa Melnick – NZ Registered Psychologist in the Clinical Scope of Practice

Melissa gained her registration as a clinical psychologist in 2001 in South Africa.  She has spent over 20 years working in private practice with children, adolescents, parents, couples, and individuals.  She has also done extensive medico-legal work and served as an expert witness.

Since moving to New Zealand in 2020, Melissa completed further training in therapy approaches for individuals with single or multiple incident trauma, sexual abuse and complex trauma and is in the process of becoming an accredited EMDR clinician.

Melissa has expertise and interest in a number of areas including child development , trauma and its impact on the body, bereavement and life transitions , chronic pain and adjustment to illness and mood and anxiety disorders.  She works predominantly from a psychodynamic/psychoanalytic perspective but can also uses a range of evidence-based therapy techniques including mindfulness, CBT and EMDR. She offers short term and longer-term psychotherapy as well working on various government funded contracts.  She also provides supervision.

Melissa currently works with adults, couples and adolescents and is based in the Wellington office.

Dr Nicole Winters- NZ Registered Psychologist in the Clinical Scope of Practice

Nicole gained a Master of Social Work (MSW) degree and worked in child protection services for nine years before earning her second Masters in 2008 and Doctorate in clinical psychology (PsyD) in 2010.

For the last 12 years, Nicole has integrated trauma-informed systems work with individual psychotherapy theory to tailor your therapy to meet your needs. She might be a good match for you if you would like to explore Dialectical Behaviour (DBT) techniques, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT), Motivational Interviewing, CBT, and Narrative style. 

Nicole’s areas of expertise include: Neuropsychological Assessment, Trauma, Infertility and Assisted reproduction, Gender, including services prior to commencing gender affirming treatment, Sexuality, Couples therapy, ENM and Poly dynamics, and mood disorders. If you wonder whether Nicole might be a good therapist for you, please call to discuss and ask questions. She is registered with ACC for ISSC and Psych Services.

Nicole offers face to face and telehealth appointments

Danielle Banks – Intern Clinical Psychologist

Danielle is in her final year of postgraduate training to become a clinical psychologist. Danielle enjoys working with a range of mental health presentations and since starting at Gains, has become particularly passionate about her work with adolescents and young adults.

Danielle can complete assessments for neurodevelopmental disorders such as intellectual disability and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). She also provides assessments and intervention for clients with mood and anxiety related difficulties.

Danielle prides herself on building strong and trusting relationships with her clients. She conducts thorough psychological assessments that serve to help clients understand how their current difficulties have developed, and how they are being maintained. She primarily uses Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), an evidenced based modality, in her intervention work.

For more information, please contact the Psychology & Wellbeing team, call: (06) 835 6631 or email [email protected]