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Meet the Assessment & Therapy Team

 Richard Cross Head of Assessment and Therapy

Richard Cross

Qualifications: UKCP Registered Psychotherapist and Child Psychotherapist., BSc Hons (Psychology)., DHP., Adv Dip SMT., PQD Counselling Children and Young People., Certificate in Child Clinical Assessment.

Job Role: Head of Assessment & Therapy

Main areas of interest & expertise: Richard has worked with children and young people for over 29 years who have experienced significant adversity. He has focused on developing innovative approaches to address complex needs such as bringing the first trauma-informed approach to the UK in 2006. He is a member of the ISSTD psychotherapy training program facility and a trustee of various organisations such as the Bowlby Centre, London. He is currently focusing on developing integrated therapeutic approaches such as the ATIC model for Five Rivers which incorporates understanding around attachment, trauma, and dissociation.

Claire Friday

Claire Friday

Qualifications: UKCP registered MSc in Psychotherapy, Diploma in Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy, Diploma in Child and Adolescent Psychotherapeutic Counselling, and have a Diploma in Adult Psychotherapeutic Counselling.

Job Role: Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist

Main areas of interest & expertise: Before training as a psychotherapist Claire worked for over 10 years in the adoption field and has worked with various charities supporting both children and adults. More recently Claire has worked as a psychotherapist with adults within an Enhanced Primary Care team in an NHS setting

Katharine Anderson

Katharine Anderson

Qualifications: MPsych (Hons) Advanced Psychology, Postgraduate Certificate in the Therapeutic Arts

Job Role: Referrals and Research Coordinator

Main areas of interest & expertise: I have an invested interest in supporting people who are experiencing or have experienced difficulty and adversity. Since completing my integrated master’s degree, I have aspired to work with people. In my current role, I support behind the scenes, reviewing referrals for children and young people, considering their needs, difficulties, and how we can best support them should they enter our care. Additionally, I work in research, collaborating with partners at UCL on varying projects to inform, improve and highlight the work we do at Five Rivers. Alongside my current role, I am presently undertaking a Masters in Integrative Child Psychotherapy. I have a particular interest in how the arts can be used therapeutically to help process feelings and emotions, reduce stress, discomfort, and anxiety, and how they can help to facilitate the recovery from adversity or trauma.


Connie Sweeney

Connie Sweeney

Qualifications: BSc (Hons) Counselling Psychology, Doctorate in Counselling Psychology

Job Role: Counselling Psychologist

Main areas of interest & expertise: Before this role, I worked with adults who had experienced childhood trauma, and I saw the impact these adverse childhood events had on their well-being in their day to day life. As a result, I am particularly interested in working with young people who are experiencing or have experienced adversity in childhood; my aim is to mitigate or reduce their trauma before it impacts their adolescent and adult life. I use a child centred approach with play therapy to help reduce their stress and anxiety, process their emotions and empower them in their trauma recovery process.

Pete Russell

Qualifications: Art Psychotherapy M.A. PG Dip B.A. Hons, Systemic Family Therapy PG Dip PG Cert

Job Role: Psychotherapist

Main areas of interest & expertise: My strengths are working directly with children and carers, I have a toolbox that looks like EMDR – Mindfulness – Art Therapy – Systemic thinking and Counselling. I draw upon my training and experience of over twenty years working with Looked After Children and Carers.  I am very creative and I am a practicing Artist and also practice mindfulness in my free-time.

Hannah Wilcox

Hannah Wilcox

Qualifications: BSc (Hons) Psychology and Doctorate Clinical Psychology (DClin Psych)

Job Role: Clinical Psychologist

Main areas of interest & expertise: I have been working in mental health settings for over ten years and have developed particular skills and interests in working with complexity and developmental trauma. I have always been drawn to working with young people and families in particular, as I love the opportunities for creativity and playfulness that comes with this type of work. I am passionate about ensuring that helping organisations are attachment and trauma-informed at all levels, so I really enjoy my role supporting foster carers, social workers and managers in the South and South East. I also work one day a week with one of our residential homes, which gives me a chance to focus in-depth on the wellbeing of a single young person in placement.

Laura Garnett

Laura Garnett

Qualifications: Doctorate in Counselling Psychology, BSc Forensic Psychology

Job Role: Counselling Psychologist

Main areas of interest and expertise: Before joining the Five Rivers team I worked in a range of settings including the NHS, schools and the third sector and have a broad range of experience in terms of client groups and presentations, however, I have always had a particular interest in working with developmental trauma and in particular dissociation. Prior to starting my current role I worked primarily with adults and saw the lifelong impact adverse childhood experiences could have. I wanted to be able to intervene earlier to support children and young people to work through and recover from trauma before it could impact their adult life. Within my role, I have the opportunity to support children directly using an integrative approach to therapy in order to tailor an intervention that will meet the needs of each individual. I am also able to work with the significant adults in a child’s life to support them to better understand the needs of traumatised children as well as develop their own self-reflective skills.

Charles Wells

Qualifications: BPS Chartered Counselling Psychologist; MSc Counselling Psychology; BSc (Hons) Social Psychology. UKCP registered Existential Psychotherapist. Diploma in Existential Psychotherapy

Job Role: Counselling Psychologist

Main areas of interest and expertise: Charles has more than 20 years of experience in working therapeutically with children and adolescents. He was the clinical supervisor and team manager for three Multisystemic Therapy Teams (MST), that provided family based interventions to parents and carers of children with complex behaviour problems. In addition to providing trauma-informed therapy interventions to children within two Five Rivers residential homes, he offers consultation and supervision to the residential and education teams there. Outside of his work with Five Rivers, Charles is a Senior Eating Disorder therapist at a CAMHS service in East London where he is currently setting up a Family Therapy Clinic. After many years of running groups for men who have been convicted of domestic violence offences, Charles is considered to be an Expert Witness in DV related child-contact disputes and regularly prepares risk and vulnerability reports for the courts

woman with glasses

Josie Cuckow

Qualifications: MA Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy and Counselling, Post Graduate Diploma Integrative Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy and Counselling, Post Graduate Certificate in Adult Counselling.

Job role: Integrative Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist and Counsellor.

Main areas of interest and expertise: Josie has over 30 years experience of working therapeutically with children, young people and their families/carers, in a variety of different settings (child protection and family support, family homes, schools, hospitals, respite care, residential, domiciliary home care and fostering services) and organisations (private, voluntary, health and local authority), individually or part of a team. This includes multidisciplinary and multi-agency working. Josie is experienced in working with the impact of complex trauma and adverse childhood experiences. She is creative and uses the expressive arts, meanwhile having a holistic and systemic approach and use different modalities according to the individual needs of the child or young person.

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