Pioneering services for children with learning, developmental, motor and behavioural challenges

Our Team

Joanna Brett Dip COT, RCOT

CEO, Paediatric Occupational Therapist and Neurofeedback Practitioner

In 2011 I formed Starjumpz to build upon the work of Jill Christmas, Occupational Therapist, who established this practice in 1989, thirty years ago.  Starjumpz is committed to pioneering new services for children and their families, with a vision for how new technologies and pioneering approaches with evidence based best practice can break new ground in helping children achieve their potential.

In the past seven years we have attracted a dynamic team of experts to work with us at Starjumpz, including our Clinical Director Neurodevelopmental Consultant Paediatrician Dr Georgie Siggers, Dr Veronica Leclezio and Dr Briony Arrowsmith.  The whole team are passionate about helping children and supporting their parents, carers and teachers, and committed to working as a team where collectively so much more can be achieved.  The range of services we offer is expanding as more specialists join us. New services include Play Therapy, Counselling for children, Relationship and Family Therapy and Clinical Nutrition Consultancy.

The multi-disciplinary team offer diagnostic assessment and treatment. Our Paediatricians can offer appointments with ongoing follow up and treatment. With the NHS spending cuts too many children are on waiting lists at a time in their development when it is so vital that they and their families receive help and support. In addition to offering private appointments for diagnostic assessment we have also taken on NHS contracts to help reduce waiting times for children.

In April 2014 we began to offer Neurofeedback treatment. Combining this with Occupational Therapy, Speech & Language Therapy, Nutritional Therapy and other services, increases the efficacy of treatment and accelerates progress. We are very excited by the results we are seeing with Neurofeedback combined with therapy. In 2017 we introduced the Alpha-Stim electrocranial therapy stimulation device which can be used in conjunction with Neurofeedback or by itself to treat insomnia and anxiety in children. The device can also be used by adults and is useful in the treatment of depression.

We believe that working in partnership with parents, carers and teachers is vital to achieve the best outcomes. We strive to inspire, empower and nuture the children we see at Starjumpz, to build their self-esteem, release their potential, learn new skills and strategies for success, and to support their health, well-being, and to enable them to enjoy their precious childhood.  Playing and having fun is at the heart of everything we do at Starjumpz.

As a Paediatric Occupational Therapist I have worked for 26 years in a variety of NHS and Independent settings including schools and Therapy Centres. I have experience working with children with a wide range of conditions including Sensory Processing Disorder, Dyspraxia, Dyslexia, Developmental Coordination Disorder DCD, Dyspraxia, Attachment Disorder, Developmental Trauma, Cerebral Palsy, mild to severe Learning Difficulties, multiple handicaps, visual perceptual disorders, handwriting problems and ASD (Autistic Spectrum Disorders) & ADHD (Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder). I also have experience in the medico-legal area including the assessment of children for statements of special educational need.

I have been involved in setting up and developing occupational therapy services for children both privately and within some of the London health authorities. I have worked in South Africa and in Japan where I was chairman of Tokyo International Learning Community, a charity which was setting up a school for foreign children with special needs.

I live in Tunbridge Wells, Kent and I have four sons.

Clinical Lead 

CONSULTANT NEURODEVELOPMENTAL PAEDIATRICIAN 

Dr. Georgie Siggers BSc (hons), MBBS, MRCP, MRCPCH

My undergraduate medical training was completed at Guy’s Hospital where I qualified as a doctor in 1993. Since 1995 I have been working as a paediatrician, specialising in neurodevelopment since 2001. I have held several NHS Consultant posts in London and the South East and have received specialist training in undertaking developmental assessments, assessments of children for autism spectrum disorders (including DISCO, ADI and ADOS) and assessments of children for ADHD. My other area of work is associated with adoption and fostering. I have lectured widely, including to an international audience.

From 2013 to 2016 I was employed as a Consultant Community Paediatrician for Kent Community Health NHS trust based at the Homeopathic Hospital in Tunbridge Wells. My NHS duties included general paediatric developmental clinics, assessments of children presenting with a range of behavioural conditions, diagnostic assessments for children with ADHD and or Autism Spectrum Disorders, follow up of children with ADHD, diagnosis and follow up of children with complex disability and safeguarding, Designated Doctor for Looked After Children, Lead for ADHD and Medical Advisor to Adoption. I also had day to day lead clinical responsibility in two local special schools.

I am a member of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) and an executive and council member of the British Association of Community Child Health (BACCH), editor of the BACCH Magazine, member of the British Paediatric Mental Health Group and member of the George Still Forum for ADHD.

At Starjumpz we offer Diagnostic Assessment, Consultations and ongoing follow up. Diagnostic assessments for Autism (ASD), ADHD, PDA, Developmental Delay, Complex Disabilities. We also offer Post Adoption Mulitdisciplinary Assessments and Paediatric follow up care. Assessments may involve other specialists such as Speech & Language Therapists, Occupational Therapists & Physiotherapists.

Dr Veronica Leclezio MBChB DCH MRCPH

Consultant Neurodevelopmental Paediatrician

My undergraduate medical training was completed at the University of Cape Town and Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town, South Africa, where I qualified as a doctor in 1994. I worked in paediatrics at Red Cross Children’s Hospital and as a GP, in Cape Town, until coming to the UK in 1997. Since 1998, I have been working in paediatric training posts in several specialist hospitals in London and the South East. I completed my specialist training as an acute general paediatrician with an interest in allergy in 2012, since when I have been working as an NHS consultant paediatrician.

I have a special interest in paediatric allergy, and I am the paediatric allergy lead for East Sussex. I am a member of the British Society for Allergy and Clinical Immunology (BSACI) and the Surrey and Sussex Paediatric Allergy Group Network.

I have been working as a neurodevelopmental paediatrician in the NHS since 2013, seeing children for developmental and autism assessments. I have had specialist training in undertaking developmental assessments and assessments of children for autism spectrum disorders (including ADI and ADOS). I have knowledge and interest in ADHD, including training through the George Still Forum ADHD Masterclass workshops.

I am a member of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) and the British Association for Community Child Health (BACCH).

Dr Briony Arrowsmith MBChB, MRCPCH

Consultant Neurodevelopmental Paediatrician

My undergraduate medical training was completed at the University of Birmingham where I qualified as a doctor in 2005. After completing my foundation training (first 2 years as a doctor) in central Birmingham, I moved to London in 2007 to start my training in paediatrics. I trained in South and East London and spent a year working abroad part way through.

I specialised in neurodevelopment in 2013 completing my training in 2018. I have held an NHS Consultant role in East London since October 2018. My NHS work is primarily focused on development, responsibility for a school for children with autism and child safeguarding. I am currently a named doctor for child safeguarding. I have been active in teaching during my training and now as a consultant.

I have received specialist training in undertaking developmental assessments (including Schedule of Growing Skills and Griffiths III), assessments of children for autism spectrum disorders (including ADI and ADOS), Dyspraxia and ADHD.

I am a member of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) and previously an executive and council member (as the trainee representative) of the British Association of Community Child Health (BACCH) and I am a member of the Association for Research in Child Development (ARICD).

OCCUPATIONAL THERAPISTS 

Anya Kennedy  Lead Paediatric Occupational Therapist

 

 

 

 

Lou Whitehorn

Independent Occupational Therapist and Neurofeedback practitioner

I qualified as an Occupational therapist  in 1980. I have worked extensively in the field of Paediatric Occupational therapy, assessing and treating children of all ages with a wide range of conditions. Prior to working at Starjumpz, I worked in the paediatric department at St Mary’s Roehampton and Hopscotch Childrens Therapy Centre in Harley Street London.
Earlier in my career I worked in neurology at Rivermeade Rehabitation Centre in Oxford and The Neurosurgical Unit at The Maudsley Hospital in London. I also worked for a period as a community Occupational Therapist for Camde, Hammersmith and Fulham and Westminster Social Services, treating adults and children with physical disabilities in the community. My work has also included the training of Occupational therapists and other professionals. Having trained with Jo Brett in Oxford, we have worked together for many years and now are enjoying building the team at Starjumpz.

I am passionate about my work which has included treating children and adolescents with a wide range of difficulties including Dyspraxia, Autistic Spectrum Disorder, ADHD, Sensory Processing Disorders, DCD, adopted children, learning difficulties, Developmental Delay, Cerebral Palsy and complex needs.

I am trained in many therapeutic approaches including Sensory Integration Therapy and the Integrated Listening System. I am also a Neurofeedback practitioner and provide this therapy at Starjumpz.

 

Lizzy Pearce

Paediatric Occupational Therapist

 

 

 

 

 

Sally Jones PGDip OT  Paediatric Occupational Therapist 

For 5 years I worked in adult mental health in London in a variety of settings including acute in-patient/community and Forensic services. I gained  additional training during this period including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and RAID (promoting positive behaviours in secure settings).

I have experience of working with Autism, Dyspraxia, Selective Mutism, and some genetic syndromes including Angelman’s Syndrome as well as a wide range of mental health conditions.

Before starting at Starjumpz  (and following a career break to raise 3 children), I worked as a Senco for 3 years, providing individualised support for children with complex needs at a private nursery in Lewes. I now provide ongoing support for children with additional needs on a consultancy basis. To further inform my work at Starjumpz I am currently studying a Sensory Integration Module through the Sensory Integration Network and Ulster University (for completion in January 2018).

I also have personal experience of being a parent of a child with additional needs, as my eldest son has diagnoses of autism and global developmental delay. We use the HANDLE approach together (Holistic Approach to Neuro-Development and Learning Efficiency) which emphasises the concept of ‘Gentle Enhancement’.

I value the opportunity to work in partnership with each child and their parents/carers. A key part of my role is to identify an individual’s strengths through playful interactions and discussions with the key adults in the child’s life. In this way we can work together to reduce/overcome current challenges. One of my primary focuses for therapy involves increasing function through activity and nurturing skills in independence (consequently raising self-esteem).

Dr Deanna Gibbs  Paediatric Occupational Therapist

Sharon Armstrong Jones  Paediatric Occupational Therapist

Juanita Hall  Paediatric Occupational Therapist

Claire Mathews BSc (hons)

Paediatric Occupational Therapist and Sensory Integration Therapy Specialist.

 SPEECH AND LANGUAGE THERAPISTS

Liz Van Graan   

Lead Specialist Speech and Language Therapist

I am a member of the Association of Speech and Language Therapists in Independent Practice (ASLTIP) and the Royal College of Speech & Language Therapists (RCSLT). I am also recognised by the Health Professions Council (HPC).

I am always seeking new challenges to develop myself. I enjoy seeking solutions to problems and difficulties and supporting others through them. I like finding new ways to work to benefit my practice and my clients. I am happy working in a team but also work individually.

I am experienced in working with a wide range of children including children on the Autistic Spectrum ASD, PMLD profound and multiple learning difficulties, Dyspraxia, articulation disorders, and children with language delay. I have worked with children with Dysphagia setting up eating and drinking programmes.  I have experience of running Lego therapy and other social communication skill groups.

I have experience in assessment of children for EHCP plans and in tribunal work. I also work as a legal intermediary, assessing vulnerable witnesses, with or without difficulties to inform and suport the police during interview. I also support witnesses during court proceedings whilst giving evidence.

I have experience working within both schools and nurseries.

Clare Lucas                         

Paediatric Speech and Language Therapist

 

 

 

 

 

Track Goldsmith

Paediatric Speech and Language Therapist

Eunice Chrysolite

Paediatric Speech and Language Therapist

 

 

 

 

SONY DSC

Sarah Spence     Paediatric Speech and Language Therapist

 PHYSIOTHERAPISTS

SONY DSC

Elke Mondeh    Paediatric Physiotherapist

I have 28 years experience working as a Physiotherapist specialising in Paediatrics in a variety of settings. In addition to working at Starjumpz, I currently work at the Cromwell Hospital in London, as well as working for the West Sussex Community Trust in a special school. I have worked with Starjumpz and formerly Christmas Children’s Clinic for more than seven years. I work closely with parents and teachers in order to maximise the benefit of therapeutic input and I enjoy working within a multidisciplinary team.

My experience includes:

  • General Paediatric Physiotherapy based on neuro-developmental intervention covering a variety of conditions;
  • Cerebral Palsy and any diagnosed and undiagnosed  syndromes
  • Global and developmental delay
  • Orthopaedic problems
  • Juvenile Arthritis
  • Dyspraxia
  • Experience of treating SDR (selective dorsal rhizotomy)  including use of Functional Electric Stimulation and Galileo Therapy to strengthen muscles and close working relationship with Paediatric Orthotist for appropriate provision of orthotics post-surgery.
  • Galileo therapy to enhance bone density and counteract Osteoporosis in children with Cerebral Palsy and Brittle Bone Disease
  • Assessment for suitability of Lycra garment as part of treatment
  • Integration of Sensory Integration in order to enhance sensory processing in children with reduced and less physiological gross motor mobility  which is the case for all children with the diagnosis within the Cerebral Palsy spectrum
  • Access to advanced and intensive Sensory Integration at Starjumps if need is identified
  • Occupational Therapy/ Physiotherapy joint assessment / treatment

I am experienced  in a wide range of therapeutic approaches including the Bobath neurodevelopmental therapy, Psychometric Treatment, Sensory Integration Therapy, Dyspraxia, Othotics, MOVETraining and treatment of Neonatal Clubfeet. Muscular Skeletal approaches; Manual Therapy, Functional Kinetics, Scoliosis Treatments by Lehnert-Schroth and Vojta, Myofascial Release. Electrotherapy treatment; Advanced FES by Otto Bock, FES for facial paralysis.

Other approaches; Reflective Breathing by Scharschuch-Haase, Stemmfuehrung by Brunkow, PNF Foundation Course, Halliwick Hydrotherapy,  Feldenkrais, Reflexology,  Kinesiotaping. I have studied Acupuncture completing a Foundation Course

The professional memberships include: 

  • British Association of Bobath trained Physiotherapists
  • Medico-Legal Association of Chartered Physiotherapists
  • Association of Paediatric Chartered Physiotherapists
  • Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Neurology
  • Sensory Integration Network

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Jane Stewart-Parry.   Paediatric Physiotherapist

 FUNCTIONAL MEDICINE PRACTITIONER

Dr Liz Corocan   Functional Medicine Practitioner

CLINICAL NUTRITIONISTS

Abir Hamza-Goodacre  

Clinical Nutritionist & Naturopath BSc (Hons), MSc, mBANT, CNHC Registered

Abir has over 10 years’ experience in the field of nutrition and offers a personalised, evidence­ based approach to health through Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine. Abir’s areas of special interest are gut health, nutrition interventions for children with developmental challenges, autoimmunity, Type 2 Diabetes, energy disorders and health issues associated with lifestyle factors such as stress and poor sleep.

Abir offers private consultations and nutrition and lifestyle packages. She also designs and delivers nutrition/cooking courses and talks at schools and businesses. She gained her degree in Nutritional Therapy from the University of Wet London and also holds an MSc in international poverty and aid work, specialising in community-based projects. Last year, she was appointed Director or Community & Partnerships at the British Association of Applied Nutrition & Nutritional Therapy (SANT), and was also awarded the Volunteer of the Year. Abir is also a 200-hr YogaWorks Certified Instructor.

Jackie Reader Clinical Nutritionalist and Naturopath BCNH 

Jackie qualified as a clinical nutritionist with BCNH at The UK College of Nutrition and Health, in London in 2004 after more than three years of training. She is a member of the Federation of Nutritional Therapy Practitioners. For many years, Jackie has been helping people with a range of health challenges, with her primary interest being in digestive health and wellbeing.

Jackie is also qualified in Kinesiologist, Colonic Hydrotherapist, NAET Allergy Therapy, Live Blood Microscopist, Homeopath and Bowen Therapy. Jackie has knowledge about how stress levels and emotions can effect our digestive systems, and is aware that although food intolerances and gut issues are often a core problem, there is no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to treatments which is why she has trained in many areas.

Jackie has worked with both ASD and ADHD clients, and is able to provide consultation and advice for children and adults.

CONSULTANT AUDIOLOGIST

Dr Jay Jindal  AuD. FSHAA. Consultant Audiologist

Dr Jindal has a doctorate degree in audiology with more than 14 years of NHS/private experience. This includes working at most of the super-speciality NHS audiology clinics in London. He sees children and adults of all age groups for earwax removal and hearing, tinnitus, and balance issues. He has access to state-of-art facilities and equipment to provide an extremely high-quality care, customised to individual needs and preferences.

Jay is one of the country’s leading audiology practitioner and brings with him a plethora of experience in both NHS and private audiology sectors. He has also gained very important international experience in India and United States to compliment his specialist knowledge in assessment and management of hearing, tinnitus, auditory processing, as well as balance disorders.

Jay’s addition to our clinic has led us to start the much-needed paediatric audiology and auditory processing disorder assessment service. He is happy to see all age groups- newborn babies, children, and adults. In fact, the youngest person he has seen in his clinic was a-week-old baby and the oldest person was a 106 years old gentleman.

Jay can offer the following services for children and adults at Starjumpz:

Jay is a member of a prestigious fitness-to-practice panel of the regulator of his profession, Health and Care Professions Council. He is professional development consultant for the UK audiology professional body, British Society of Hearing Aid Audiologists. He is also involved in writing and contributing to the UK national guidance on audiology topic via his membership of Professional Guidance Group of British Society of Audiologists.

Jay has many national and international publications to his credit. He has written several popular blog articles on audiology topics. He is also invited to speak on audiology related topics by various national and international universities and conferences.

FAMILY & RELATIONSHIP THERAPIST

June Brogan   Family & Relationship Therapist

I have a Masters in Relationship Therapy and I am a Relate trained relationship and family therapist.

I have been CEO of Relate Kent for 5 years, working with and facilitating 1000’s of family and couples therapy sessions. Recently merging three separate charities into one. I believe that strong family relationships are the basis for a happier world. As a mother of five children, I understand the pressure of family life, how to survive it but also enjoy it!

In the stress of today’s society, families who become immersed in the challenges of raising a child, especially where children may have emotional and behavioural difficulties, can lose sight of the parental relationship. A strong parental relationship is the corner stone to a child’s development. During  sessions you would explore how your background and family of origin impact on the way you relate, and how to identify your patterns. The aim is to build stronger relationships as well as a more resilient family unit.

Relationship and /or family therapy provides time to invest and rebuild a more healthy relationship that will be the best gift you can ever give to your children and to yourselves.

BEHAVIOURAL SUPPORT & CONSULTANCY

Andy Forsyth

Positive Behaviour Practitioner 

 

PLAY THERAPY, COUNSELLING & CBT FOR CHILDREN & YOUNG PEOPLE

Peet Naude

H.E.D QTS, B.A Counselling, P.G. Cert. Therapeutic Play Skills, P.G. Dip. Play Therapy, P.Q. Cert. Clinical Supervision, Dip. CBT/REBT

Pete originally trained as a teacher in South Africa in 2001 before moving to the UK. He worked in teaching for 13 years. Through his work, he recognised that a lot of the children and teenagers whom he taught had emotional and mental health needs and that these were just as important as their educational needs. His passion on the topic inspired him to further his training and become a counsellor. He received his BA in counselling in 2012 in person centred therapy, and then went on to train in Therapeutic Play Skills in 2014, and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in 2018.

Pete has worked with children, teenagers and adults on a wide range of therapeutic disciplines including:

  • anxiety difficulties
  • attachment
  • stress
  • self-esteem issues
  • interpersonal relationship difficulty
  • depression
  • emotional abuse
  • behavioural restructuring
  • trauma
  • grief counselling

Peet is also a trained Anxiety UK and Crisis Line counseller, as well as a certified clinical supervisor, and is Currently undertaking advanced level training in CBT. He is a member of the Accredited Play and Creative Arts Therapistist (PTUK), The National Counselling Society (NCS), and the British Association of Play Therapists (BAPT).

PARENTING CONSULTANT

Sarah Weller   Positive Parenting Coach

 NEURO LINGUISTIC PRACTITIONER  (NLP)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Joanna Harris – NLP & IEMT Practitioner, Naturopath and Trainer Member of the Associate for NLP (ANLP) and the Association for IEP

Joanna has considerable experience helping children and young people make positive changes in their lives and general wellbeing with Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) and Integral Eye Movement Therapy (IEMT). Joanna studied Early Childhood Development and has her experience includes working with Primary schools and local authorities. She now runs a private therapy practice and NLP training courses in Sussex, as well as working alongside Starjumpz.

Joanna works with children, parents and carers to find a more resourceful way of doing things and to help children move forward easily. NLP can transform relationships, improve communication, confidence and understanding, and enhance learning skills and strategies. 

Joanna is also trained in IEMT, an extension of NLP, which can help people overcome difficult past experiences and memories.

DYSLEXIA SPECIALIST

Michelle MacGrath.

STARJUMPZ ADMINISTRATIVE TEAM

Melanie Dann    PRACTICE MANAGER

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Becky Day      ASSISTANT PRACTICE MANAGER AND CLINICAL ASSISTANT

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sarah- Jane Sellors   CUSTOMER SERVICES MANAGER

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Jordan Ayling           Practice Management Office Assistant

Becka Edmonds       Practice Management Office Assistant

Amanda Biddle        Finance Manager

 

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