Therapy & Assessment for Children

Ladybug House takes a holistic approach to its therapy, incorporating the child and their family. We want our therapy to be effective and sustainable. In most sessions, parents are a key part of the therapy.  Parents are with the child all day, everyday, an opportunity not to be missed. We are not only your child's therapist, we are your expert parent trainer.

Speech Pathology

Our highly trained Paediatric Speech Pathologists diagnose and treat children with communication disorders, including difficulties with speaking, listening, understanding language, reading, writing, social skills and stuttering. We specialise in working with children with Autism. Services are available on the Gold Coast and Melbourne.

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Social Skills Groups

Social Skills Groups are aimed at children who have social, emotional, language and cognitive difficulties. Children are grouped together of similar age and language level.

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Psychology

Our Psychologists in Melbourne and on the Gold Coast work with children, parents and educators to address learning or behaviour problems at home and school, as well as helping parents through difficult or challenging behavoirs and situations. We have extensive experience in working with children diagnosed with Asperger's.

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Autism Assessments

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability characterised by difficulties in social interaction, impaired communication, restricted and repetitive interests and behaviors and sensory sensitivities.

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Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapy helps your child improve in everyday living tasks, that's where the word 'Occupation" comes in. For Children with developmental delays, our Occupational Therapists help improve s child's motor, cognitive, sensory processing and play skills. 

 

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Cognitive Assessments

Cognitive Assessments are also referred to as IQ tests. In order for your child to continue to develop and learn, a cognitive assessment is helpful to identify the areas of strengths and weaknesses that they may be experiencing.

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Our Team

Speech Pathologists

Maria

Maria is a Certified Practicing Speech Pathologist. She trained at La Trobe University in Melbourne, and has been a practicing clinician for many years. She has worked in Paediatrics in a number of settings as a Speech Pathologist, trainer and consultant. Maria has worked in Early Intervention organisations in Melbourne, Sydney, London and at The Royal Children's Hospital in Mental Health and the hospital’s Communication Clinics. Maria has extensive experience in the administration of the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS-2). She has also worked as a Supervising Clinician with Speech Pathology undergraduates and Masters Students at La Trobe University’s Communication Clinic. Through her work at Aspect Sydney, Maria lectured post graduate students in Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) in Singapore.Her passion continues to be working closely with children aged 0- 15 years and their families providing individualised assessment and intervention programs. Her areas of expertise and interest are in ASD, speech and language disorders and delays. She has a variety of experience working with other health professionals, schools, kinders and child care centres.

 
Lindsay

Lindsay is a Certified Practicing Speech Pathologist.  She studied Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences and Linguistics at the University of Colorado, and received her Masters Degree from the University of Melbourne.  Lindsay has experience working with children with speech and language delays in both early intervention and community health settings.  She has a passion for working with children who stutter and specialises in the treatment of stuttering using the Lidcombe Program.  Lindsay also has a great interest in working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, providing therapy alongside other allied health professions in social skills groups, and one-on-one with caregivers/teachers in order to help children reach their full communication potential.  She is trained in the Hanen 'It Takes Two to Talk®' program, DIR Floortime®, Picture Exchange Communication System and ADOS-2 certified.


Lia

Lia is a Certified Practicing Speech Pathologist.  She studied Health Sciences at Latrobe University, and received her Masters Degree in Speech Pathology from the University of Melbourne. Lia is trained in the Hanen 'More Than Words®' program, the Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS), DIRFloortime® and is ADOS-2 certified. She has experience working with children with speech and language delays in both early intervention and school settings. Lia has experience in the assessment and intervention of speech & articulation, receptive & expressive language and social skills. Lia also has a great passion for working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.


Erin

Erin is a Certified Practicing Speech Pathologist, who has worked with paediatrics for a number of years and across a range of settings. Erin has experience working with preschool aged children in early intervention and community health, and has provided therapy and consultation using a family-first, strength-based approach. She has also worked with children in both mainstream and special education settings, and has provided services as both a direct therapist to the child, and as a consultant to guide staff and parents. Erin has experience working with a variety of diagnoses and difficulties, including Autism Spectrum Disorder, Childhood Apraxia of Speech, Intellectual Disability, Developmental Delay, Stuttering, Hearing Impairment and a range of speech and language delays and disorders. She is a certified provider for the Hanen ‘It Takes Two to Talk®’ program, and an accredited DIRFloortime® provider, which underpins her approach in all aspects of client care. Erin is also ADOS-2 trained. Erin is passionate about looking at each child in the context of their environment (e.g. home, school, or kindergarten), and working alongside their caregivers to enable them to participate to the best of their abilities.


Mariah

Mariah is a Certified Practicing Speech Pathologist. She studied a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in psychology at the University of Melbourne and received her Masters Degree in Speech Pathology from the University of Melbourne. Mariah is passionate about working with families and young children on the Autism Spectrum. In addition, Mariah has a keen interest in early infancy and toddlerhood and applies a strengths-based compassionate approach to diagnosis and therapy. She has experience working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, Childhood Apraxia of Speech, Intellectual Disability, language and speech disorders, literacy difficulties including Specific Language Impairment (SLI) and stuttering. She applies a family-centred, collaborative approach to therapy and works closely with child care centers, kindergartens and schools. Mariah is trained in the Hanen ‘More Than Words’ program, the Lidcombe Program for early childhood stuttering and is DIR Floortime certified.


Alecia

Alecia is a Certified Practicing Speech Pathologist. Since graduating with a Bachelor in Speech Pathology from the University of Newcastle, she has worked across a range of paediatric settings, both in Australia and abroad. Alecia has experience working with children who have a variety of diagnoses and difficulties including children with Complex Communication Needs, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Cerebral Palsy, Childhood Apraxia of Speech, Intellectual Disability, Developmental Delay, Stuttering, reading and writing difficulties and a range of speech and language delays and disorders. Alecia has delivered services to children both in a direct one on one setting and as a consultant to guide parents and staff. These therapy services have been provided in a range of early intervention centres, clinics and educational settings, including private therapy, Early Childhood Development Programs, mainstream schools and special schools. She is trained in Pragmatic Organisation Dynamic Display (PODD), DIRFloortime®, and Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS). Alecia is passionate about working closely with families to individualise intervention and create functional communication and participation.


Occupational Therapist


Andrea

Andrea is a fully registered occupational therapist who graduated with First Class Honours in Occupational Therapy from the Australian Catholic University. Andrea has presented at conferences including the P3M Symposium and Occupational Therapy Australia Conference. Andrea is trained in ‘Learn to Play’ and ‘DIR/Floortime’. She is passionate about working with children in the areas of sensory processing, play and social skills and fine and gross motor skills. Andrea uses family-centred and strengths based therapy to help children engage in meaningful activities. She is registered to provide services and programs with HCWA, Better start and Medicare (Enhanced primary care plans).

 

Psychologists

Sandra D'Souza

Sandra has extensive experience working with children on the Autism Spectrum.  She is a fully registered psychologist and a provider for FaHCSIA’s Helping Children with Autism program. Sandra provides behaviour-based early intervention for children with autism and related disabilities using the principles of Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA).  She has a great deal of experience working with children aged between 2 to 14 years. She is able to offer a comprehensive psychology and ABA programs, and her services include designing an individualised program to suit the child’s age and skill level, ongoing supervision, parent training, consulting with schools and helping to support families and therapy teams set up and run home-based programs.

Steve Souter (Interact Psychology, Gold Coast)

Steve is a nationally registered psychologist who specialises in working with children, adolescents and families. He has had extensive clinical experience over the past 10 years including government and community mental health, private practice and mobile outreach support. In addition to private practice Steve is currently working as a school psychologist on the Gold Coast, providing cognitive assessments, individual and group based psychological support to primary and secondary school students.

Steve is passionate about fostering resilience in children and adolescents, having developed and delivered several resiliency based group programs. He has specialist clinical skills and training in the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of a range of presenting concerns and draws upon a number of evidence-based approaches tailored to the individual's needs. Steve values an accepting, empathic and collaborative approach to therapy and aims to assist individuals and families to achieve personal understanding, growth and integration.

Steve also has particular interests in the application of mindfulness-based interventions with adolescents and families as well as sports and performance enhancement.

Breeana Souter -  Clinical Psychologist - (Interact Psychology, Gold Coast)

Breeana is a nationally registered clinical psychologist who works primarily with children, adolescents and families and has clinical experience in a variety of tertiary, private and community settings. Breeana has a particular interest and passion for working to empower young women, particularly during adolescence.

Breeana values a warm, respectful, and collaborative approach to therapy to assist individuals and families to make positive change and achieve a sense of empowerment in their lives. She has clinical training in the assessment and treatment of a range of presenting concerns and utilises various evidence-based approaches, tailored to the individual. She has a particular interest in the application of mindfulness-based interventions to cultivate resilience, self-acceptance and compassion.

Breeana is currently completing a PhD through Bond University, examining factors underpinning resilience during emerging adulthood and the application of mindfulness-based interventions with this population.