Breakthrough can only run with the help of some exceptional people.
We know that going to a new building or an initial appointment with someone can feel quite scary, so we’ve created dedicated sections of our website where you can have a virtual look around our Support Centre before you arrive, and find out a little about each of it’s team members, from the therapy team through to support/admin staff, and even the office cat!
Office & Management Team
Giles Lascelle – CEO & Clinical Director
Giles has over 30yrs experience as a psychotherapist and trainer. He’s worked in the NHS, social services, foster homes, and with a number of voluntary agencies in the fields of mental health, addiction and homelessness. He worked with the first ever NHS Staff Support Service, providing therapy and training for NHS and Emergency Services staff. Giles is a full clinical member of the UKCP and was previously part of the executive committee for the British Psychodrama Association (BPA). He specialises in helping adult survivors of childhood abuse and trauma. He also has a passion for seeing communities and organisations trained and equipped to support to survivors and develop a greater understanding of mental health needs – because ‘it takes a village’!
Giles lives in Bath with his wife Ally and an insanely overindulged cat, Marmite.
Holly – Services & Development Manager
Holly is the glue that holds Breakthrough together. She heads up the operational side of Breakthrough from our centre, staff training and partnerships, through to running all our services, our crisis support, and drop-in support. She’ll talk you through the process of starting therapy or trauma training, and answer any questions you have (big or small!). Should you ever need post-therapy chocolate or a natter, she always has some chocolate in her desk drawer for those who need it and will find a way to give people time even when it’s manically busy. She lives on coffee and snacks, and has an unnecessary number of photos of pretty looking meals on her phone that one day she may remember to put on Instagram!
Maddie Jessel – Psychotherapist
Maddie is a qualified, HCPC registered Art Psychotherapist with a background in the creative arts. She has worked at the NDRC in London, where she ran an art psychotherapy group for asylum seekers and refugees, and set up a 1-2-1 therapy space for LGBTQIA+ clients. She currently works at a therapeutic artistic community in Bristol, supporting adults with complex mental health difficulties. She loves swimming, basketball, experimental cooking (often with questionable results), cups of tea, and carpentry… favourite project so far has been helping build a treehouse for adults! Maddie works with Breakthrough part-time, seeing people 1-2-1, working with our groups, and also heading up our START Programme!
Tom Kerry – Psychotherapist
Tom has lived and worked in Bristol and Edinburgh as a counsellor, psychotherapist, support worker, youth worker, playworker, etc (you get the picture) in many organisations from young children to end of life. All these roles have influenced his belief in a connected community as a great source of support. The lockdown condensed his hobbies into cooking, reading, TV and walking but there’ve been forays back into the world of gigs and festivals which is very exciting! Getting better connected to nature is a big focus right now. He’s steadily turning his once bleak garden into a plant and insect oasis, because nature is so vital for wellbeing.
Louise Turner – Psychotherapist
Louise has worked in many mental health charities and services over the years and currently works for Bristol’s specialist NHS clinics for FGM survivors. She loves yoga, making pottery and slowly turning her home into an indoor jungle. We jokingly call Louise our office goat, it’s not as harsh as it sounds! She finds an artistic use for almost anything we’re about to throw out, so our art cupboard is full of weird and wonderful bits of scrap she’s gathered from around the Support Centre! Louise is also the queen of weird but wonderful questions, “shower thoughts” (Google it!) and Netflix recommendations!
Jessica Barber – Assistant Psychotherapist
Jess is in her fourth year of an MA in Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy. Jess spent 10 months on a part-time placement with us supporting our 2 therapy groups across 2020-21, and joined the staff team in September 2021 as a trainee psychotherapist. She is absolutely lovely! Jess has been a riding instructor and a teaching assistant. She has a large family and too many pets! And is also the reason we have so many packets of biscuits!
Sarah Metcalfe – Placement Trainee Therapist
Sarah is in her fourth year training as a psychodrama psychotherapist at the London Centre for Psychodrama. She will be supporting our Friday therapy group this year. Sarah has always been curious about people and has a passion for documentaries. She has worked in the media making films about the arts, education and racism. She loves fringe theatre and new writers sharing their stories. She has recently dusted off the knitting needles and is helping her daughter knit a blanket for the cats.
Support Services Team
Becca – Project Support Worker
Becca is one of our all-singing all-dancing team members who has spent most of her career working in mental health, from ED groups to in-patient care. She’s here to offer support on hard days or with things like benefits applications and mental health skills, she also helps with activity days, fundraising, and our specialist group for male survivors of sexual abuse. Becca is a single mum to 2 spirited and wild and wacky boys (and their pet stick insects!), and a soppy black cat called Ninja.
Eve B – Placement Student
Eve will be on student placement with us full-time from August 2021 to June 2022. She will be taking part in all aspects of day-to-day life at the Breakthrough Support Centre working in our office, helping with our various services, supporting our therapy groups – and everything in between!
Eve loves theatre and singing, and (like the rest of the team) charity shopping! And despite being tech-savvy, she somehow broke her computer multiple times in her first week – we gave her a medal!
Shweta (aka Sweet) – Placement Student
Shweta will be joining the the team from Summer 2022 through to June/July 2023 for their placement year as part of the Psychology degree at the University of Bath. They are a bubbly and approachable person and always happy to help. Shweta is an advocate for different minority and marginalised communities and strives to create an inclusive and accepting place for everyone. They love art, charity shopping, clothes, nature, and most of all; cats! (So it’s just as well Breakthrough has it’s very own!)
Lucy – Community Cat
Lucy is 1 year old, so despite now being quite big, she’s still only a kitten. Our hope is she’ll grow to be a great therapy cat, but at the moment she’s our ‘community cat’ instead, as mostly, she just likes being a typical stubborn cat and getting to hang out around the Support Centre to welcome visitors, play with toys, and knock things off of people’s desks! Like all cats she is FULL of sass, but also loves to fall asleep on people’s chairs (usually the second they’ve stood up!), or curl up in her bed and purr away – she has a very loud purr. And she LOVES to try and steal the staff team’s lunch, as far as she’s concerned, all food is Lucy’s food – the same goes for unattended glasses of water.
We know that cats offer something really special for people who are feeling triggered and need something soft to stroke or a bit of a distraction. Their purrs help regulate breathing and heart rates, and they’re just generally fun to have around 🙂
We have 2 new staff members joining the team over the Spring/Summer:
Shweta – Placement Student (from Summer 2022)
Charlotte – Therapist (from September 2022)
We’ll be updating their bios in the coming weeks so you can “meet” them before any appointments or assessment sessions with us.