Meet Aven

Inclusive & Affirming Care



A part of me has always known that I wanted to be a healer that seeks to journey alongside others throughout their emotional suffering. As a teenager, I was an integral part of the Anti-Bullying Committee and the Peer Mediators Program at my high school. Soon after I came out whilst in high school, I also started among the first LGBTQ+ peer support programs in my rural community. 

My deeply held commitment to the healing arts motivated me to pursue my education in social work. I began my professional journey at George Brown College (GBC) where I completed the Community Worker Program ('07). Whilst at GBC I learned that healing must extend beyond the individual to include political and social transformation that aims to dismantle systems of oppression and discrimination. 

My perception of the 'helping' process continued to radically swift through my Bachelor of Social Work ('10) and Master of Social Work ('11) at York University. I came to deeply appreciate how systems of helping are often complicit in maintaining conditions of marginality. Thus, I strive to practice social work from a critically reflexive space that sees the personal as political. In so doing, I seek to help build bridges between personal struggles and the social conditions in which they occur. 

This commitment is what inspired me to return to graduate school to pursue my Ph.D. in Social Work (expected '21) at McMaster University so that I can engage more fully with the concept of resilience; a concept we all take for granted. I have seen resilience theory used in direct practice as a measure of risk rather than a lens by which we honour the tenacity in people. My doctoral project will focus on assessing the transferability of the resilience theory to the experiences of queer and trans persons.  

As a social worker that practices psychotherapy, I practice from an integrated framework grounded in trauma and social justice-informed care whilst drawing from the fields of energy psychology, shamanic energy medicine, emotion-focused therapy, and mindful self-compassion (MSC) where I seek to help build connectedness, compassion, and a sense of purpose for the people with whom I consult. 

#psychotherapy #wholisticwellness #justiceinformedtherapy #transpersonalorientation

My Approaches to Healing

The Best of Practice-Based Evidence


Emotion-Focused Therapy

Sustainable Emotional Change

Emotion-Focused Therapy (EFT) is a process-oriented approach to psychotherapy that activates emotional and somatic processes through a series of experiential exercises facilitated in-session. The mechanism of change in EFT is transforming emotional schemes that keep us trapped in psychological distress and or prolongs our suffering. EFT is an evidence-based practice for the treatment of complex trauma, depression, and somatization as per the American Psychological Association.  


Location & Contact Information

12 Ferguson Avenue North, Hamilton, ON L8R 1K9