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Meet the Team

“The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team”.      Phil Jackson

Michelle Schofield


Michelle Schofield is the Director of Children’s Therapy Services. The team are qualified to work with a range of approaches, ensuring they deliver a tailored and effective service for the children and families they support.

Michelle is an experienced Child and Family Therapist with many years experience working in private practice. She also has extensive experience working in CAMHS, non-profit agencies and charities, and private fostering agencies.

Michelle is qualified to work with a range of approaches, ensuring she delivers a tailored and effective service for the children, families and individuals she supports. 

Michelle has an extensive list of qualifications including:

  • Post Graduate Diploma in Play Therapy (Leeds Beckett University)

  • Master in Social Work (Leeds Metropolitan University)

  • Masters in Professional Practice (University of Sheffield).

In addition, Michelle is a:

  • Theraplay Informed Practitioner (Level 1, 2 & Groups)

  • Filial Therapist

  • Child Parent Relationship Therapist (CPRT)

  • EMDR Therapist (adult and child)

  • BUSS Level 3 Practitioner (In Training)

  • SMARTmoves

  • RMTi (awaiting consultancy)

  • Certified Autplay provider & Trainer

  • DDP (Level 1 & 2)

  • Story massage Practitioner

  • Lego Based Therapist

  • Relaxkids Coach

  • Certified Autplay Provider, Consultant and Supervisor 

Michelle has extensive experience working with children in Foster and Adoptive placements, as well as Special Guardian families. She is particularly interested in Sensory and movement, early developmental trauma, and is Trauma informed in her practice. Michelle also specialises in Attachment, Adoption Support/Breakdown, Children in Foster Care, ADHD and Autism.

 Michelle Schofield  Director childrens-therapy-services
Meet the Therapist (Child)

Michelle is very passionate and built Children’s Therapy Services, so families can access services that will empower them to help their children, a place where there is no judgement and where every effort is made to ensure that we work collaboratively with families and other professionals to provide the best outcomes possible for each child or individual. She realises that parenting is no easy job, especially parenting children who have complex needs, early developmental trauma and attachment needs and believes that it truly does take a “village” to raise children.

Her fun, creative and energetic personality assists her in building positive relationships with the children and families that she works with and keeps them engaged in therapy.

Michelle also offers extensive training, consultation and supervision.

Claire Howard

Associate Therapist

Claire is a certified and registered Play Therapist and Clay Therapist. As well as a Child Attachment Play, and Baby Toddler Bonder Practitioner.

Claire has been with Children’s Therapy Services since 2022 as an Associate therapist. She has over 18 years’ experience working with children, young people and their families impacted by trauma. Claire has experience working in various settings.

Claire enjoys working creatively with children and their families and can offer different modalities.  She is flexible in her ways of working to meet the child’s emotional and developmental needs.

Additional training includes:

  • The BUSS Model Level 1

  • SMART Foundations

  • Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy Level 1

  • Certificate in Creative Counseling for Young People 

  • Equine Interventions

  • Therapeutic Life Story Work

  • Makaton Level 1 and 2

  • Improving Sensory Processing in Traumatised Children-Building Underdeveloped Systems

  • Certified Sand Tray Play in Education Practitioner

  • Safeguarding Children and Young People

  • First Aid at Work

  • Therapeutic Crisis Intervention

Claire Howard

Nikki Gott

Associate Therapist

Nikki qualified as a Social Worker in 2013 and has worked in Child Protection and Special Guardianship support. Since 2019, her work has really focused on supporting children and families impacted by trauma. Prior to qualifying as a Social Worker, she had over 10 years’ experience working in adult drug support services and supporting homeless families.

Nikki has been with Children’s Therapy Services since 2023 as an associate therapist. Nikki enjoys working with and supporting parents and carers of adoptive and kinship care children. Specifically, Nikki is skilled and knowledgeable in providing therapeutic parenting sessions, emotional support to carers and upskilling these carers in their understanding of trauma and its impact on children and young people.

Alongside this associate therapist role, Nikki remains a practicing Social Worker for a Local Authority in a role that provides support to Special Guardianship carers. Within this role, she delivers one to one support and facilitates group training several times per year – courses focusing on understanding trauma and NVR. 

Additional training includes:

  • Social Work (MA, University of Sheffield, 2013) 

  • NVR level 1

  • DDP level 1 

  • Polyvagal Theory

  • Restorative Practice

  • Motivational Interviewing

  • Domestic abuse training

  • Mentalizing & Mentalization Based Treatments with Children, Young People & Families

  • Foundations For Attachment

Nikki Gott - Associate Therapist

Malika Sykes

Associate Therapist

Malika is a certified and registered Play Therapist with a background in drama and applied theatre. She believes in every individual’s ability to be creative and nurtures and facilitates this creativity in both her play therapy and drama work. Malika is also currently training in adult counselling.   


Malika has been with Children’s Therapy Services since February 2023 as an Associate Therapist. She has over 15 years’ experience of working with children, young people and adults with learning disabilities and/or autism within a theatre, education or community setting.     


Malika uses the Child-centred Play Therapy model and offers Therapeutic Parenting.   

Training and Qualifications include:  

  • LEAPlets group training (Based on the BUSSmodel)  

  • Water Play Therapy Level 1 

  • Postgraduate Diploma in Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy (current study)    

  • Safeguarding Level 3 

  • Postgraduate Diploma in Play Therapy  

  • Postgraduate Certificate in Therapeutic Play Skills      

  • Level 2 Certificate in Understanding Children and Young People’s Mental Health   

  • Arts Award Discover and Explore  

  • Arts Award Bronze and Silver  

  • Autism Plus Training Enterprises, Autism Awareness and Sensory Perceptions  

  • BA(Hons) Theatre and Professional Practice   


Po Stoneman


Po is a Foundation level Theraplay Practitioner.


Po has been with Children’s Therapy Services since January 2024 but she has over 10 years of experience working with children and their families who have been impacted by trauma in different roles including adoption support and within the care setting.  


Previously, Po worked in a Therapeutic Residential Care setting and also had experience working as a Therapeutic Practitioner within another service. Po has enjoyed supporting families in Theraplay inspired group work and will be developing herself with BUSS model level 1 so she can help run more support groups. 


Po is playful and lively. She loves working with families to find what can work for them and seeing them grow together. 

Additional training includes:

  • Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy Level 1 

  • Psychology Bsc. hons 2.1

  • Theraplay & Marschak Interaction Method Assessments and Group Theraplay

  • Safeguarding, Equality & Diversity & Data protection training updated regularly

  • Supporting Children and Adolescents with anxiety with Dr Karen Treisman

Po Stoneman

 Liz Heaphy

Associate Therapist

Liz is a certified and registered Play Therapist.


Liz has been with Children’s Therapy Services since November 2023 as an Associate Therapist.  She has over 22 years’ experience working with children and young people in a variety of different settings.


Liz works creatively with children using a child-centred play therapy model to enable them to explore and express their feelings and experiences, process trauma and develop better self-control and self-esteem. 

Additional training includes:

  • Beacon House Developmental Trauma Training for Professionals

  • MA: Autism Spectrum

  • National Autistic Society Autism Modules

  • Level 3 Counselling Skills

  • Level 3 Safeguarding

  • Makaton Level 1

  • Drawing and Talking

  • Filial Therapy 

 Liz Heaphy



Hayley is a Certified and Registered Play Therapist.


Hayley joined Children’s Therapy Services in 2023 as an Associate Therapist. She has over 12 years’ experience working with children, young people and their families. Hayley has experience working in various settings, including Early Years Foundation  Stage Nursery, Primary School, Paediatric High Dependency Unit, Children’s Hospice and in the Community.


Hayley has most recently been working within the NHS as an Assistant Psychologist, supporting families with ARFID- Avoidant Restrictive Food Intake Disorder. 

Hayley enjoys working creatively with children and their families and can offer different modalities.  She is flexible in her ways of working to meet the child’s emotional and developmental needs. 


 Additional training includes:

  • Parent-Child Attachment Play

  •  AutPlay Therapy

  • Rhythmic Movement 

  • Safeguarding Children and Young People

  • TraumaPlay Advanced

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