An Introduction to
Therapeutic Attachment Specialist©
My first experience of children in care, was when I was a teenager, and my parents fostered teens. This was a positive experience for me and inspired me to work with children in care.
It wasn't til many years later, when my husband, son and I relocated to Sheffield, that the seed planted in my heart as a teen started to come to fruition. In 2005, we became foster carers for Sheffield City Council.
This was a real eye opener! As a mum and auntie and having experience working with children and youth clubs and social care, I thought I knew what I had let myself in for.
Our first night as foster carers, to siblings aged 3 and 4, I was introduced to how early life trauma can impact on children and young people, as a tiny little 3 year old swore at me, hit me and threatened to throw me down the stairs! I quickly realised I was out of my depth and "love and an extra bedroom" wasn't all you needed!
Since that first night, I have undertaken lots of research and training (see details below) to try and understand what children and young people exhibiting difficult behaviour due to early trauma are trying to communicate.
After fostering for 5 years, I joined the Targeted Mental Health in Schools Team in Sheffield where, again, we were referred lots of children with early life trauma who were struggling.
In 2014, I decided I wanted to specialise in working with children who had experienced early life trauma and quit my job and established Hope Attachment.
I have been privilaged to offer therapeutic support to many families personally and through a great team of practitioners I have had over the last almost 7 years. Alongside this, I have provided lots of consultations and training to schools, especially from 2014-2018 when I was commissioned by Sheffield City Council Virtual Schools Team to undertake an active research programme in Sheffield Schools, produced a specialist Emotional Wellbeing and Attachment Toolkit for Schools as well as providing training via the NHS Future in Mind Initiative.
After almost 7 years, I have done a lot of soul search and decided that it's time for a new direction and will be focussing on working therapeutically with young people aged 12+ and their families, as well as continuing to support schools.
My aim is that families and schools receive a bespoke package of support for their needs, as no two young people or school settings are the same.
If you would like to enquire about therapeutic support or training, please check out the relavent pages on this website or email email@example.com for therapeutic support or firstname.lastname@example.org for training support.
Fiona's has undertaken the following training:
BSc (Hons) Psychology
Theraplay Level 1 and 2
Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy Level 1 and 2
Neurophysiological Psychotherapy Level 1 and 2
Sensory Attachment Integration – Just Right State Programme for Children and Adults
Therapeutic Life Story Work
Attachment Narrative Therapy
The Infant CARE-Index
Child Attachment & Play Assessment (CAPA) Using Narrative Story Stems
Adult Attachment Interview
Fiona receives clinical supervision monthly from a senior psychologist at CAMHS.