Meet Our Practitioners

All counsellors and psychotherapists at RISE are accredited members of IACP, IAHIP or ICP

ICP logoIAHIP logo


Wayne Hamilton BA (Hons), Dip MIACP

Counsellor & Psychotherapist, Practice Manager

Founder and practice manager at RISE, Wayne is a qualified, experienced psychotherapist holding a 1 st Class Honours Degree in Counselling & Psychotherapy from DBS, a Practitioners Cert in CBT and he is currently pursuing a Diploma in Consciousness postgrad with the C.G. Jung Centre, Dublin.

Wayne is a fully accredited member of the Irish Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy and works within their codes of ethics and practice. Previously Wayne has volunteered with ISPCC ChildLine and also has a background in social care settings having worked with service users who are marginalized or disadvantaged in some way within the community such as those with serious illness and children on the autism spectrum. He has also practiced as a psychotherapist at Living Life Counselling in Bray, a charitable organization and is an affiliate of both OPTUM and Health Assured Employee Assistance Schemes.

Wayne creates a warm, safe, non-judgmental space for individual counselling and his practice is humanistic, integrative and relational in nature. Wayne believes that each of us at our unique core, have the capacity to heal and learn from our wounding, to have a better relationship with ourselves and to live fully. He has particular interest and skill in the areas of abandonment and isolation, trauma and PTSD, anxiety and major depressive episodes.

Wayne Hamilton Rise Counselling & Psychotherapy


Moya Nulty BSc. PGCert, Counsellor & Psychotherapist

Moya graduated from UCD with a degree in Psychology and History. Having worked as a teacher for many years she studied at PCI college and obtained a Diploma in Psychotherapy/Counselling and went on to receive a BSc. (1 st class Honours) in Psychotherapy/Counselling from Middlesex University. Later she completed a Postgraduate Cert in Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy with IICP Institute.

Working from an integrative humanistic perspective, Moya draws on different therapeutic approaches but the work is always grounded in a person centred approach tailored to the suitability of the client. Moya is particularly interested in working with children and young adults. Through play therapy she has worked with young people who are struggling with issues like anxiety, depression, low self- esteem, bereavement and loss, panic attacks, self-harm, eating disorders, stress, trauma and school related issues.

Moya is a fully accredited member of IACP.

Moya Nulty Rise Counselling & Psychotherapy


Judy Ferguson, Counsellor & Psychotherapist

Judy joined RISE having completed her psychotherapy training with ZestLife college and a Level 8 degree with IICP and has attained clinical practice experience with Tiglin Addiction Services offering counselling to men in residential addiction settings and Living Life Counselling in Bray.

Judy has completed additional learning in the areas of complex trauma, ethics and core evaluation. Judy is a person centred psychotherapist who also draws on Psychodynamic theory and Cognitive Behavioural approaches in her approach. Judy has particular interest in the areas of anxiety, grief and loss, self-esteem and trauma.

Judy is a fully accredited member of IACP.

Judy Ferguson Rise Counselling & Psychotherapy


Louise Doran Bsc, PGDip, Cert Therapeutic Play, Counsellor & Psychotherapist

Louise Doran trained with P.C.I. College Dublin and obtained a degree in Counselling and Psychotherapy. Louise has a special interest in Eating Disorders and went on obtained a Diploma in Practitioner’s Skills for Eating Disorders with The National Centre for Eating Disorders U.K. She also completed further training in C.B.T (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) with Zestlife College.

Louise works with adults and adolescents one to one. Louise has worked in the Loretto counselling Center for 5 years before starting her private practice in Wicklow and Wexford. Louise finds C.B.T. to be extremely helpful in overcoming anxiety/panic attacks, low self-esteem, depression, anger and many other problems. Louise is fully accredited with the I.A.C.P. (Irish Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy) and works under their code of ethics. she has worked for many years treating people from all walks of life with many different issues and problems. She is currently training in Therapeutic Play Skills and intends to continue my professional training, well in to the future.

Louise believes that every person is unique and so deserves a therapist who is professional and expertly trained. She is motivated by a genuine desire to help people reclaim their lives. Healing from past hurts, dealing with present issues and making change all require a safe and accepting place to do so. Louise believes that the client/counsellor relationship is of the utmost importance. Her strengths lie in creating a non-judgmental environment where clients can feel comfortable without the fear of blame or stigma, and to know that she will do her very best to support and help you. 

Louise is a fully accredited member of IACP.

Louise Doran Rise Counselling & Psychotherapy


Graham King BA, PGDip, MSc Systemic Psychotherapist

Graham is a Systemic Family Therapist.  A fully registered member of the FTAI (Family Therapy Association of Ireland), he is accredited to work with individuals, couples, families, and adolescents.  Graham holds a BA in Psychology from the University of Notre Dame in the US, and a PGDip and MSc in Systemic Psychotherapy from Clanwilliam Institute.

 Graham has experience working in a variety of social care settings including working with families impacted by mental health diagnoses, illness, intellectual disabilities, and homelessness.  Throughout his training as a family therapist, he gained experience working as a psychotherapist in the education sector, and various family therapy services across Dublin. 

As well as working with Rise, Graham also works in a Family Centre in the Dublin West region.  He has experience helping people with a range of difficulties includes relational issues, sexual issues, parenting issues, PTSD, OCD, addiction, anxiety, depression, bereavement and more. 

The systemic approach to psychotherapy attempts to understand distress within the context in which it occurs.  It is collaborative, seeks to understand how patterns have arisen, and how people have come to make sense of their lives.  Graham is also particularly attuned to the wider societal contexts that influence behaviors, attitudes, and beliefs.

Family Therapy


Deirdre Devlin, B.A, Dip Psychotherapy, Cert. Child & Adolescent Psychotherapy, MIAHIP.

Deirdre has a Post Graduate Professional Diploma in Counselling & Psychotherapy from Tivoli Institute , Dun Laoghaire, a Certificate in Child & Adolescent Counselling & Psychotherapy from the Irish Institute of Counselling & Psychotherapy. Deirdre is currently studying for a Masters qualification in Integrative Child & Adolescent Psychotherapy in the Irish Institute of Counselling and Psychotherapy. 

Deirdre is a humanistic and integrative psychotherapist with extensive experience providing counselling and therapeutic services for adults, adolescents, and children. She has a particular interest in working with teenagers and the issues that typically present for them including anxiety, depression, panic attacks ,anger, exam stress, self-harm, body image issues , bullying and self-esteem issues. Deirdre believes that each person has the capacity for growth and change, and she helps clients find greater balance, personal insight, and resilience. Her approach is empathic and collaborative, and she uses a blend of different therapeutic approaches. Deirdre also spends time each week volunteering in Living Life, a non-profit agency that provides counselling.

Deirdre is a fully accredited member of IAHIP.


Sarah-Jane Reilly HDip., MSc., MA Counsellor, Psychotherapist and Psychoanalyst

Sarah-Jane has been training and working in the area of psychoanalysis and psychotherapy since 1999. She holds a higher diploma in psychoanalytic studies, a master’s degree in clinical psychoanalysis and a higher diploma in child art psychotherapy. She trained in the mater child guidance clinic, St. Vincent’s university hospital, Elm park, St. John of God, Stillorgan, the national maternity hospital, Holles street and Navan psychiatric unit. 

Sarah-Jane works with children, adolescents and adults and has a particular interest in anxiety and attachment and separation issues. She also works as an occasional lecturer on the higher diploma in psychotherapy in St. Vincent’s University hospital and on the MSc in Child art Psychotherapy in the late childhood guidance clinic.

She is a fully registered and accredited member of A.P.P.I and I.C.P.

Sarah-Jane Reilly Counsellor Rise Counselling


Dympna Nolan BA, MSc CAP, PMCAP, Child & Adolescent Art Psychotherapist

Dympna is a fully qualified Child and Adolescent Art Psychotherapist obtaining her Masters of Science in UCD School of Medicine and a Post Masters in St Vincent’s School of Psychotherapy. Child and Adolescent Art Psychotherapy is deeply embedded in the Psychoanalytic approach. Child and Adolescent Art Psychotherapy also recognises the humanistic and integrative approach in which all young people have the human capacity to achieve a balanced life.

Dympna has an art background and a keen interest in how the unconscious connects with the conscious thought processing through drawing and painting. She was trained on a CAMHS teams in the Lucena Clinic Services, a Child and Adolescent Mental Health service of St. John of God Community in Wicklow. Presently Dympna is also working as an Art psychotherapist with Tusla, the Children and Family Agency within a Social Care Team. Dympna has extensive knowledge of children aged 4 to 18 years and specifically works with young people who have encountered trauma and attachment difficulties.

Dympna has vast experience in relationship building, both with her child and adolescent clients and with their parents or guardians. She has been working in this area for the last 20 years. Showing a particular interest in the exploration of communication through image making and in emotional expression.

Dympna is an accredited member of the ACAP, and works under their Code of Ethics.

art therapy


Therese Reddan Adv Dip, MSc. Counsellor & Psychotherapist

An accredited member of IAHIP, Therese graduated from the Tivoli Institute in 2016 with an Advanced Diploma in Psychotherapy. Therese then went on to study at Carlow IT and obtained a Master of Arts in Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy (Clinical) Level 9 on NVQ.

Therese has particular interest in the area of grief and loss having completed her master’s Dissertation in the subject. Therese also trained as a drama teacher with the London college of Music and media and she also has over 30 years of experience of working in the health care field with people who have intellectual disabilities, dual diagnosis, autism and mental health problems. Therese is a hardworking, conscientious and caring person, with extensive knowledge of offering support and guidance to clients. She has a proven ability to empathise with individuals whilst retaining an objective and realistic approach to their treatment and therapy.  Throughout her career she has had the opportunity to work with a wide cross section of clients with a wide variety of presenting issues, including but not limited to: grief, relationship and attachment issues, abandonment, eating disorders, depression, stress, anxiety, trauma, abuse, sexuality and gender issues, individuals impacted by disability and age related issues.

Therese is optimistic and non-judgmental and works from a humanistic, psychodynamic and integrative model. Working collaboratively with her clients and with a spirit of compassion and expanding awareness. She supports her clients to enter into gentle experiential practices, to expand their own capacities and to discover new insight about themselves, to become more aware of their own strengths and resources and of how the past may be influencing their current thoughts and behaviours. 


Michelle O’Connell BSc. MSc. Dip. Counsellor & Psychotherapist

Michelle is a fully qualified, experienced and accredited Counsellor and Psychotherapist with the IACP. She holds a Diploma in Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy from IICP and has completed a BSc. (Hons) in Psychology and an MSc. in Organizational Psychology both in the UK. Michelle also holds a Practitioners Certificate in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Michelle currently works as a Volunteer Counsellor with Living Life Counseling in Bray and has also worked with the Village Counselling Service in Tallaght as well as working in private practice.

Michelle has experience working with a variety of different issues such as anxiety, depression, loss, anger, self-esteem and relationships. She utilizes a Humanistic approach to Counselling using techniques from a variety of different theoretical backgrounds including Person Centered, Reality Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy as well as Mindfulness. Michelle offers her clients a safe and non-judgmental space to explore their world. She believes that a lot of our behavior is learned from past experiences and values using CBT to work collaboratively with the client addressing unhealthy thought patterns and improving their emotional health.

Michelle is a fully accredited member of IACP.

Michelle O’Connell BSc. MSc. Dip.


Sarah-Anne Connolly, BA (Hons), MA, Post Dip CBT, Post Dip.

Sarah-Anne is a qualified Play Therapist who is continuing in her
studies in completing a MA in Creative Psychotherapy (Humanistic and
Integrative Modality) with the Children’s Therapy Centre. 
Previously, Sarah-Anne completed a BA (Hons) in Psychology, a MA in
Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy, followed by a Postgraduate Diploma in CBT.

Sarah-Anne has worked with teenagers and children in educational, social
care and clinical settings for the last 17 years. She has worked with
children and teenagers who have experienced anxiety, mental health
issues, complex family background, low self-esteem, trauma, and
attachment disruptions. Sarah-Anne takes a humanistic, integrative and
child-centred approach in her work and believes in building self-esteem
and resilience in the children that she works with, as well as fostering
healthy attachments.

Sarah-Anne believes that children use play to communicate their needs
and feelings, like an adult would use words in talk therapy. Play
therapy allows a child to play out their inner world – their thoughts,
feelings and concerns in a safe environment.
While younger children engage mainly in play therapy, older children and
teenagers use a variety of creative means such as art, craft, sand
trays, music, games and writing to access their feelings in a safe way.
This creative therapy uses the same principles as play therapy.
Sarah-Anne has an interest in neurobiology and trauma and incorporates a
lot of sensory play in her work with children.

Sarah-Anne is a pre-accredited member of IAPTP and follows their code of ethics and practice.

Play Therapist and Psychotherapist


Dónall Donnelly BA, PG Dip, MA, Counsellor & Psychotherapist

Dónall specialises in a vast array of areas including but not limited to anxiety, depression, relationship issues, selt-esteem issues, grief, trauma etc but has a particular interest in work-related stress, work-life balance, work assertive issues and bullying in the workplace. His uniquely diverse background as an employment lawyer, recruitment consultant, career coach and psychotherapist equips him with a unique set of skills which can really assist his clients to recalibrate the balance in their lives and overcome hurdles that are standing in the way of them reaching their true potential.

Dónall has a proven ability to empathise with clients whilst retaining an objective and realistic approach to their treatment and therapy. Dónall is viewed by his clients to be optimistic and non-judgemental in his approach to therapy working from a humanistic, psychodynamic and integrative model and well-versed in the solution-focussed model most suited to the EAP referral system. He supports his clients to expand their own capacities, provide coping mechanisms to handle stress and assists them to fully realise their own strengths and resources.

Dónall is a fully accredited member of IACP.

wicklow counselling

Nicole Coutlangus BA, Dip Counsellor & Psychotherapist

Nicole completed her Diploma of Counselling & Psychotherapy at PCI College in Dublin, and gained her initial clinical experience at Living Life Counselling in Bray. She is a humanistic, person-centred therapist who utilises existential concepts, basic CBT techniques and mindfulness where appropriate to the work. Her approach is relationship-driven, with the objective of empowering the client to trust their inner voice always at the fore. The past is explored, but the work is very much grounded in the present moment. More than anything, she believes it is the relationship between client and therapist that promotes the greatest healing.

Nicole has a particular interest in the areas of sexuality, career-related crises and crises of meaning and purpose, as well as anxiety disorders and maternal mental health. She equally has a niche in helping millenials and Gen Z clients maintain their mental health while managing adulthood in the age of social media and infinite opportunity. Coming from America, she also has a keen understanding of what it feels like to start over in a new country, and realises that this may be a common, yet difficult experience for many in an increasingly-diverse Ireland. In addition to working at RISE, Nicole has a private practice in Greystones, and continues to volunteer at Living Life Counselling.

Nicole is a pre-accredited member of the IACP, and works under their Code of Ethics. She is qualified to work one-on-one with clients over the age of 18.

counselling wicklow


Soraya Ahmid, B.A., Dip. Integrative Psychotherapy, Professional Cert. Child & Adolescent Psychotherapist

Soraya has a B.A. (Hons) degree in Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy, a Diploma in Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy, a Professional Certificate in Child and Adolescent Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy and is currently completing the final year of her Masters in Integrative Child and Adolescent Counselling and Psychotherapy, with the Irish Institute of Counselling and Psychotherapy. Soraya believes that every client has a story – every story matters – every client matters. Soraya has extensive experience working with adults, children and adolescents and she provides a safe, warm environment that enables clients to feel comfortable to start sharing their story.

Soraya’s primary way of working is person-centred, however, being trained integratively, she focuses on the individual as a whole and therapy can therefore be tailor made to suit each individual client’s needs. Soraya has a particular interest working with children and adolescents and the various issues that they present with, which include but are not limited to, anxiety, anger, body-image issues, grief, self-harm issues, bullying, dealing with separation within the home, and self-worth issues. Her work also focuses on enabling children to access their feelings through creative means.

As well as working with RISE, Soraya also works in the Wicklow Child and Family Project Centre in Wicklow Town and she is also working in private practice in Tallaght and Wicklow. Soraya is a fully accredited member of IACP.

teen therapy wicklow


Margit Stiebitzhofer, PTI Certificate, PTI Diploma, Play Therapist

Prior to joining RISE, Margit had a career background in special needs education and Montessori management before becoming a play therapist in 2016. With a keen interest in evidence-based interventions, Margit utilises tools such as SDQ (Strength and Difficulties Questionnaire) for evidence-based measure, ELS (Emotional Learning Styles assessment) spectrum related and Hopes and Expectations (qualitative measure).

Margits practice is Non-directive and child-centred, following Jungian theory; the psyche has a self-healing potential, that the archetypes assist in organizing the child’s behaviour and therapeutic processes intervene and transform the child in the direction of healing. She works integratively using a wide range of play and creative arts techniques, mostly responding to the child’s wishes. Margit has experience with alleviating chronic, mild, or moderate psychological and emotional conditions in children that are causing behavioural problems and/or are preventing children from realising their potential. Margit is committed to developing herself through continuing professional development, including supervision.

Margit’s focus us on building and developing the therapeutic relationship based on the Axline Guiding Principles of Interaction and Ethical Work Principles of Play Therapy Ireland (governing body).

play therapy wicklow