In case you were wondering about me.......

I am originally from Fiji and am of Indian descent. My family immigrated from Fiji to the United States and then to Australia.  

My professional career in Australia focused on case management & program development within marginalized communities; including high risk youth, juvenile offenders, people with disabilities & people living with HIV/AIDS. I also had extensive volunteer experience within the environmental movement; liaising with traditional Aboriginal communities on issues of sustainable and eco-friendly tourism development.

In 2000 I returned to the San Francisco, California Bay Area & continued to work primarily within disenfranchised communities. I have 10 years experience providing a range of services for pregnant & parenting adolescents including comprehensive case management, vocational services, program development & therapy - individual, group & family.

In addition to working with adolescents, I have worked with incarcerated & formerly incarcerated adults. In 2007, I was asked by the San Quentin T.R.U.S.T to create a curriculum addressing mental & emotional health & wellness for long term incarcerated men. This formed the basis for an ongoing weekly group I subsequently facilitated at California State Prison - San Quentin, on trauma & healing. I was privileged to work with the men of the San Quentin community for 10 years & it has been a truly transformational experience in my life. Click here to read an article in the San Quentin News about the health & wellness group I ran there.

Additionally, I have worked in programs within the S.F. District Attorney's Office and the S.F. Sheriffs Department providing individual & family therapy & mental health assessments for clients with a range of offenses that had resulted in involvement with the criminal justice system.

In 2005/06 I completed a 9 month intensive training program with University of California, San Francisco's Child Trauma Research Project which works with children under the age of 6 years and their parent who have experienced or witnessed domestic violence. I helped to adapt this program to the specific needs of adolescent parents & children witnessing/experiencing family violence.

In December, 2006, I completed my M.A. (Counseling Psychology) at California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS), in San Francisco, California. 

In 2007 I began working within a private practice setting; where I saw clients for individual, couples and family therapy around a number of issues including navigating racism and oppression; relationship challenges; substance use; navigating cultural pressures; incarceration trauma; sexual trauma; depression; anxiety; & life transitions. 

In July, 2011, I obtained registration as a California Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist with the California Board of Behavioral Sciences.

Between 2012 - 2014 I created a curriculum for & facilitated support groups for students of colour at CIIS on navigating institutional racism and healing the effects of race based trauma.

In 2017/18 I furthered my skills & qualifications in working somatically with clients, by completing a 6 month training program on Somatic Attachment Therapy. This therapeutic modality looks at utilizing body based interventions to enhance the attachment relationship as a means of creating healing for trauma & other wounding experiences.

In October, 2018, I relocated to New Zealand in order to be closer to family; & am happy to be working within the Auckland community. I am excited to be here & look forward to creating community & being of service in Aoteaora 🙏

My passion for racial & social justice & my desire to be of service to my community have found fulfillment through the choices I have made over the course of my professional career. As I continue to strive for integrity & intentionality in all areas of my life, I trust that my professional & personal accomplishments will continue to reflect these core values of mine. Thank you for taking the time to read about me....

Om Shanti