Internships

Note: the following information is for prospective interns attending private institutions and who require individual direct clinical counselling supervision as part of their internships. If you are a student at a public post-secondary institution or part of a program that is not solely clinical counselling-focused (social work, social service work, public administration, health care) there may be opportunities for placement  without any fee-for-supervision component – so feel free to inquire via counsellor@movingforwardfamilyservices.com 

Thank you for your interest in exploring an internship with Moving Forward Family Services.

I started Moving Forward after realizing that gaps in services continued despite all the service providers acknowledging the need to collaborate and genuinely wanting to but often encountering blocks/silos… and so I decided to not just talk about it/acknowledge it, but actually try to do something  about it.

Moving Forward is a registered non-profit and registered charity and our goal  is to make counselling and support services accessible to anyone who needs it. Anyone wanting counselling will be able to access it, regardless of age, gender, presenting issue, etc. We do not receive any direct funding to deliver a program (in November 2019 we received funding from the Ministry for Mental Health and Addictions, which allows us to sustain current operations), instead we operate through sub-contracts and relying on community support (via supporting our annual fundraiser and through contributing space, thus keeping our costs low). We have no admin and no hierarchy. We have dozens of fully insured interns providing counselling to vulnerable clients, and qualified supervisors overseeing this work. We receive 50-75 referrals a week, which likely makes us one of the busiest counselling agencies – government, non-profit or private –  in the province. Our interns complete their internship having had a well rounded experience that then allows them to apply for diverse jobs within the counselling field.

While I am proud of our model, I must recognize the lack of funding means we supervisors are stretched quite thin. Therefore I have pulled in other qualified supervisors, but these supervisors are only available as a fee-for-supervision service.

So if interested in exploring the option of a placement with Moving Forward while paying for supervision (so clients are provided by Moving Forward, at one of our main sites, or our partner sites, while supervision is provided by the fee-for-service supervisor .. group supervision opportunities, without any cost but only in addition to, not replacing, individual supervision) we would be happy to explore that possibility. We also offer regular affordable in-house training for our interns/counsellors, such as introduction to Solution Focused Therapy, Introduction to DBT, Introduction to Narrative Therapy, Introduction to Working with Couples and Introduction to Working with Children.

Again feel free to reach out if interested by emailing counsellor@movingforwardfamilyservices.com, otherwise we wish you the best in your search!

Sincerely,

Gary Thandi, MSW RSW
Founder and Executive Director

Supervision is “a working alliance between two professionals where supervisees offer an account of their work, reflect on it, receive feedback, and receive guidance if appropriate. The object of this alliance is to enable the worker to gain in ethical competency, confidence and creativity as to give the best possible services to clients” (Inskipp and Proctor, 2001).  Moving Forward Family Services Society’s Expectations of / Goals of Supervision include the following:

  • To help supervisees explore alternative means of understanding and intervening with particular client issues.
  • To help supervisees explore past and present experiences of therapeutic work and to find ways to develop their own unique therapeutic style.
  • To help supervisees have a better (more integrated) sense of the therapeutic and/or social work process.
  • Supervisors and other team members must collaborate with the supervisee toward the acquisition of specific skills and knowledge related to working with diverse clients.
  • Interns are full members of the Moving Forward Family Services Society Team and have all the same rights as afforded other Team members.
  • To help supervisees develop principles of best professional practice.
  • Recognition that the supervision relationship is an opportunity for a two-way knowledge / information exchange. Supervisees are therefore encouraged to share knowledge and information frequently.
  • To help supervisees to develop positive and professional working relationship with agencies, employers, in house supervisors, peers and colleague.
  • To help supervisees develop professional confidence and an enhanced ability to act autonomously in their working context.
  • That Moving Forward Family Services Society will provide access to training opportunities (in-house and external).
  • To recognize that, while an inherent power imbalance exists, the supervisor must endeavour to create an open and supportive relationship between supervisor and supervisee that allows the latter to feel comfortable to express themselves.
  • That supervisor is trained and access frequent opportunities to develop their own supervision skills.
  • That supervisor of Masters Interns have both training and a minimum of a Masters Degree in a related field; that supervisors of Bachelors Interns have a minimum of a Bachelors Degree in a related field.
  • That the agency meets the hours requirements required by the intern’s school.
  • That the agency, where applicable, meets the hours requirements of the intern’s professional registration body.
  • That the agency meets or exceeds the requirements as laid out by the intern’s school.
  • To help supervisees develop principles of best professional and ethical decision-making practice.

“Supervision is a complex process that encompasses teaching, skill coaching, modelling, encouraging reflective practice, corrective feedback, gate keeping, and ensuring the safety of your clients…Supervisors may engage in instruction, role playing, modelling, supportive listening, providing feedback, protecting client’s welfare, identifying and discussing cultural identities, setting appropriate boundaries, managing multiple roles, promoting self-reflection, and providing formative (ongoing) and summative (final) evaluations”  (Peetoom & Nuttgens, 2019,  p.219).

 

Meet Our Supervisors

Bernard Jacob

Social Worker/Counsellor/Clinical Practicum Supervisor

Masters of Social Work/Trained in EMDR and Clinical Hypnosis

Accepting Internship Applications

Bernard has been a social worker and counsellor for thirty-nine years. Throughout his career Bernard has co-created a support group in South Africa for families struggling with mental health issues; this group was similar to the National Alliance of the Mentally Ill. He has also founded a men’s group in British Columbia which is still running today. Bernard has worked with individuals that struggle with mental health issues, addiction, relationship problems, domestic abuse and violence. He works with people of all ages, race, gender, and lifestyles; however, he has shifted towards working more with men. Bernard continues to educate himself and strives to stay on top of the ever-developing field of psychology; he believes this is an essential piece to providing effective services to those he works with.

Bernard is inspired by his clients and the change that they create while working together. In his own words, Bernard believes that “lives are changed when people are in meaningful relationships.” Another source of inspiration is the vision of Moving Forward Family Services (MFFS). He loves that MFFS sees the individuals that the system often overlooks and provides them with the support they deserve. Bernard also loves working with the interns at MFFS as he feels that their hard work and determination to enter the counselling field keeps him sharp.

When Bernard is not working, he enjoys listening to music, experimenting with acrylic art, reading, and spending time with family and friends. Bernard is “a man of simple tastes but loves good food!”

 

Ratha Check

Registered Clinical Counsellor/Clinical Practicum Supervisor

Master of Clinical Counselling

Accepting Internship Applications

Ratha Chek is a Registered Clinical Counsellor, Artist, and Educator. She brings over 15 years of counselling experiences and insight in trauma work to her therapy, training, and supervision at Moving Forward Family Services. Ratha has worked in diverse community settings, such as Downtown Eastside with concurrent disorders population, Abbotsford with women exiting sex trade, Surrey with Child Protection services, and Long Beach California with survivors of genocide.

When working with trauma recovery, Ratha integrates Therapeutic Yoga, Breath Work, Mindfulness Practice, Hands-on Healing Modalities, Resilience Enhancement, Somatic and Body-Oriented Processes into an approach and therapeutic model she has developed called Mindfulness-based Somatic Therapy. This holistic approach is designed to enhance the body’s own capacity to heal in-light of one’s physical, emotionally, cognitive and spiritual needs.

When words cannot reach, Ratha utilizes Expressive Arts Therapy; a sensory therapeutic approach to help individuals process from pain to self-soothing experiences through doll-making and fiber art.

 

Max Innes

Registered Marriage and Family Therapist (CAMFT),

Clinical Fellow, Approved Supervisor (AAMFT), PhD Sociology

Family Therapist, Training Workshop Facilitator, Clinical Practicum Supervisor

Supervision and Training Workshop* opportunities to be announced in September, 2021

Max has been a family therapist in child and youth mental health for over twenty-five years; throughout this time, he has also held a private practice for individuals, couples and families. Max is motivated by the opportunity to collaborate with others, to share ideas with the goal of creating change. Max finds value in working with Moving Forward Family Services (MFFS) as it provides him an opportunity to share his experience and skills in a meaningful way; it is a way for him to contribute to his profession and the community.

*”Solution-Focused Therapy” and ”Psyche to System”

 

Karen Aujla

Registered Psychologist/Certified Counsellor/Clinical Supervisor

Master of Counselling Psychology

Accepting Intern Applications

 Karen is both a registered psychologist and certified counsellor. She has worked in many different frontline positions and believes that this experience has helped to shape her practice. Karen is an eclectic therapist – using a trauma informed and strength-based approach she draws from cognitive-behavioural, dialectical-behavioural, and mindfulness therapies. Karen has experience with a broad range of issues which include anxiety, depression, trauma, domestic violence, workplace problems, motor vehicle accidents, custody and access matters, as well as cultural and intergenerational issues. As a trained play therapist, Karen has worked with children and youth where she has applied theoretical and evidence-based practices. She has worked in a school setting which she believes has allowed her to connect with young individuals on a deeper level.

Karen was drawn to working with Moving Forward Family Services (MFFS) as the organization’s primary focus is community and assisting those who have been systematically unsupported. Karen loves that MFFS helps those in desperate need of therapy but are challenged by waitlists, or who do not meet the necessary criteria to qualify for services. Karen acknowledges the diversity within the MFFS team – together, they provide each other enriching experiences, education, guidance, and fresh perspectives with the common goal of social justice.

Karen would like others to know that she does not believe that seeking help is a weakness; alternatively, she feels that reaching out for support is a strength. She understands the complexities that people face in stressful situations, and she works with clients to help resolve whatever resulting symptoms arise. Karen finds motivation from the significant and positive impact on the lives of her clients which is born from the work that they do together.

In her free time Karen is interested in fitness, hiking, waterfront views, and eating!

 

Christina Savage

(pronouns: She/Her/Hers)

Registered Clinical Counsellor/Department Head/Clinical Practicum Supervisor/Instructor

Accepting Internship Applications

Christina has worked in the mental health field for over twenty years. During this time, Christina has received training in accelerated experiential dynamic psychotherapy (AEDP), eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), Sue Johnson’s emotion-focused couples counselling, Gottman couples counselling (Level 1), narrative therapy, expressive and sand tray therapy, Janina Fisher’s somatic Interventions for complex trauma and shame, and polyvagal treatment in trauma with Stephen Porges and Deb Dana.

Christina’s approach is integrative with a foundation in feminist and systems theory. Throughout her career she has worked with a variety of non-profit organizations as well as in private practice. Christina has worked extensively with individuals and families who have been impacted by trauma and/or various forms of oppression. She also works with individuals who have been impacted by disordered eating and body image, and with the LGBT community.

Christina is inspired by her clients. She finds them resourceful, resilient, and creative in their approach to life challenges. The indirect teachings of her clients have taught her about kindness, the importance of being genuine and humble, and to listen without judgment. Christina has also found her work with children to be invaluable and enabled her to become playful. Play children’s natural language. She recognizes the importance in nurturing the attachment relationship and views it as an important foundation in creating stability, security and safety within the therapeutic relationship.

In 2017 Christina began working for Stenberg College as an instructor in the Counselling Therapy Private Practice program and in 2020 she became the program’s department head and practicum monitor. Christina is also a supervisor at Moving Forward Family Services (MFFS), she was drawn to the organization as she shares the belief that all individuals should have access to counselling without financial barriers.

Another source of inspiration comes from the students and interns that Christina mentors. She feels that they are powerful teachers as they each bring their unique life experiences with them; as she guides her students and interns, she is honoured to learn from them as well. Christina’s advice to future counsellors is to trust yourself and the wisdom that you hold. Your life experience is invaluable to the work that you do, and it has the potential to make a big difference in someone’s life.

In her free time, Christina enjoys a range of activities such as the performing arts, reading, cycling and hiking, yoga and meditation, and travelling with her partner.

 

Flavia Braunstein Markman

Registered Clinical Counsellor/Clinical Practicum Supervisor

Master of Counselling/Postgraduate Psychoanalysis work in Education

For close to three decades as a psychoanalytic psychologist Flavia has contributed to the field of mental health in many ways. Throughout her career, she has provided a wide range of direct and coordinating services to mental health centres, hospitals, universities, and within her private practice. She has worked with individuals, couples, families, and groups from endless ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Along with counselling, Flavia has participated in various projects as a presenter, trainer, and educator both in Canada and her native country of Brazil. Flavia is proud of where she comes from and what she has achieved over the years, both professionally and personally. She is dedicated to learning and applying her knowledge so that she may help others achieve their goals.

Flavia is inspired by simple, authentic people who are humble despite of their knowledge and experience. She believes that Sigmund Freud was a person ahead of his time who exposed himself to prove what he believed in. He worked through his own issues to better understand the individuals that he helped; like Freud, Flavia believes that mental health professionals must understand themselves before they can understand their clients. She feels that creating a strong therapeutic relationship sets the foundation to learn about oneself and empowers the client to learn how to oversee their lives and to better cope with whatever challenges they may be facing. Flavia is motivated through the teaching that she provides and feels that it is important to learn how to listen, but also how to be heard. She feels that both student and teacher learn from each other due to the blending of culture, personal experience, and the connection that is created through the sharing of knowledge.

In her free time Flavia loves being with her family and friends. She also loves to dance and to be in nature.

 

Andrew Bexson

 Counsellor/Family Mediator/Life Coach/Tutor/Narrator/Counselling Instructor/Practicum Monitor/ Clinical Practicum Supervisor

Master Practitioner in Clinical Counselling Supervisor/Registered Professional Counsellor/Registered Clinical Counselling-Hypnotherapist/Provincial Instructor Diploma Program/Family Mediation Certificate Life Coach Certificate

Please Contact Moving Forward Family Services for Internship Inquiries

Throughout his professional career Andrew has worked in the field of education, law, family services, and mental health. He is an avid scholar who received high grades throughout his education, tenaciously completing a Family Mediation Certificate within a lengthy period. Over the years, Andrew has been an active participant in restorative justice, co-facilitating meetings to find ways to support this approach. Andrew believes that learning is an endless process, and is motivated to immerse himself in it so that he can impart his knowledge to others with the goal of contributing to their success. By working with the interns at Moving Forward Family Services (MFFS), Andrew is willing and able to pass along his experiences; he hopes to provide a source of encouragement and wishes to aid them in their journey to success in the field of counselling.

Andrew is inspired by the individuals who have been able to find the strength to overcome personal challenges, and those who are interested and willing to support others. He finds the work of the Dalai Lama moving, specifically his messages that communicate to focus on others with affection rather than anger. He is also intrigued by Thomas Merton’s thoughts on racism, social justice, love, and compassion.

Andrew enjoys hiking, walking by the ocean, fixing and riding vintage motorcycles, writing, reading, and painting. In his youth he completed a half-marathon. Andrew is also well travelled – at one point in his life he spent two years travelling the world and utilized opportunities to support poverty-stricken communities.

 

Miriam Morgan

Registered Clinical Counsellor/Intake Manager/Clinical Supervisor

Master of Counselling Psychology

Accepting Internship Applications

Miriam has been a registered clinical counsellor (RCC), advocate, legal educator, and social services professional for over twelve years. Along with a Master of Counselling Psychology degree, Miriam is certified in crisis intervention (MANDT) and has ASSIST First Aid Suicide Intervention certification. She is also a member of the ‘We Can’ campaign to end all violence against women and the Developmental Disabilities Foundation.  Miriam is an approved counsellor for the Crime Victim Assistance Program (CVAP) and the Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP). Miriam provides individual and family counselling to individuals of all ages. She also works with women who have experienced trauma due to sexual and domestic abuse.

Miriam is motivated by the individuals that she works with; she feels honoured and humbled to support them through their most difficult times. She admires her clients’ resilience and is amazed at their ability to transform. While Miriam recognizes the help that she provides her clients, she feels that she learns a lot from them as well. Miriam chose to work at Moving Forward Family Services (MFFS) as she believes that they share the same passion for helping others that she does. Furthermore, their mission to help the most vulnerable populations is something that Miriam cares deeply about; in Miriam’s words, “If something needs to happen, then we have to make it happen.”

Miriam is inspired by Joni Eareckson Tada for her courage to overcome the impossible. She is inspired by the work of Sigmund Freud, Alfred Adler, Carl Jung, Wolfgang Kohler, Kurt Koffka, and Soren Kierkegaard. She is inspired by her Uncle Francisco for his love and support of others. She is inspired by her parents – her father was a talented musician who had endless determination to reach his goals; her mother was a courageous woman who never gave up and always protected her children. She is inspired by her children who have taught her to be herself. Lastly, Miriam is inspired by Jesus and his love for humanity.

In her free time Miriam enjoys music. She is an accomplished singer who recorded an album in her twenties called, “Tengo una Cancion (I Have a Song).” If you would like to listen, you can find Miriam on Spotify under Miriam Raquel.

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