Despina has 17 years’ clinical experience in nutritional psychology, specialising in anxiety disorders, and has helped patients implement positive lifestyle habits using education and nutritional guidance. Her Master’s degree is in Human Nutrition and she currently lectures at Western Sydney University in the Health Science faculty.
Despina has combined her passions for health, mental health and education, and has developed ‘The Madeleine Project’ to support young women in dealing with the emotional challenges of today. “Today’s girls often live in confusing times and they need guidance. It’s amazing how quickly teenage girls can transform into capable young women when they learn and apply simple skills”. The Madeleine Project offers these girls an opportunity – an opportunity to do things differently – wherever it’s required.
Alys is based in Christchurch, New Zealand and the Madeleine Project is extremely fortunate to have her share her expertise with us.
Alys has a Bachelor of Education, a Graduate Diploma in Performing Arts and is Head of Drama at Papanui High School so, not surprisingly, her passion lies in the transformative power of performing arts. Through the process of creation, play and personal inter-connection, the past of an individual can be retold using fresh contexts. Alys will be using her talents in The Madeleine Project to empower teenagers to work through significant life moments, explore personal habits and use the power of creativity to see the world through different eyes. It’s fun, it’s powerful – it’s magic!
Alys is also the Associate Director of Zen Zen Zo, a Brisbane based theatre company in which young people explore and express themselves through the power of movement.
Vasi Alvanos is a trained psychotherapist, coach and mentor who has worked at the forefront of body/mind approaches to wellbeing for the past 30 years. Vasi has studied and promoted somatic approaches to psychotherapy with teachers such as Tony Richardson, Julie Henderson, Daniel Weber and Robyne Speyer. She has integrated the latest research in neurophysiology, neurobiology and attachment theories, to offer a client-centred, solution-focused range of services to her clients. Vasi is well-known amongst her peers for the management and organisation of retreats with her key mentors.
Her clinic is based in Mosman, where she practises in somatics and neurofeedback.
Nathalie has been practising yoga for the past five years and understands the enormous benefits of this practice for young adults. Qualified in teaching both dynamic flow and Yin style yoga, she is passionate about what yoga can bring to individual well-being, both on and off the mat. From connection to breath, learning how to quiet the mind or learning how to listen to our bodies, Nathalie believes that the skills used on the mat translate to skills used to ground us in everyday life – or to assist us in times of adversity.
Given the fast paced, technology-driven era we live in, Nathalie is especially interested in working with young people to help them reconnect with their body, mind and breath and to give them the skills to find stillness in a world of instant but tumultuous gratification.