Dr. Nina Mafrici, Ph.D., C.Psych
Clinic Co-Director, Psychologist
Dr. Nina Mafrici is a registered clinical psychologist who obtained her Doctoral degree from the University of Toronto. She works with adolescents and adults facing various mental health challenges, including mood and anxiety disorders, eating disorders, prenatal and postpartum disorders, self-harming behaviour, interpersonal difficulties, emotional dysregulation, and personality disorders.
Dr. Mafrici’s approach to therapy is grounded in evidence-based practice, individualized to clients’ unique symptoms, goals and preferences. Her primary therapeutic modalities include Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), and mindfulness-based approaches. Dr. Mafrici adopts a holistic conceptualization of her clients’ needs. She seeks to understand how symptoms present and interact within various domains of a person’s life, and how they are shaped by their unique lived experiences, relationships and histories. She further helps identify and build upon clients’ strengths, while empowering them to make meaningful change. Overall, she strives to create a collaborative, genuine, and empathic relationship with clients, which she views as instrumental to the success of therapy.
Dr. Mafrici’s clinical training and professional experiences include psychology positions in outpatient, inpatient, day hospital, private practice and community settings. Prior to Toronto Psychology & Wellness Group she provided individual, group and parent therapy within a private Dialectical Behaviour Therapy program. She completed her psychological residency at Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences with rotations in the inpatient psychiatric unit, where she assessed and treated individuals with psychosis and severe mood and anxiety disorders; and the outpatient women’s clinic, where she treated individuals with postpartum depression and anxiety. Further, she has longstanding clinical and research interests in the treatment and prevention of eating disorders and body image issues, and obtained her clinical training from the Eating Disorders Program at The Hospital for Sick Children. She has presented and published on topics involving risk and protective factors pertaining to girls’ and women’s body image development. In recent years, these interests have expanded to encompass women’s experiences in the prenatal and postpartum period. Within this realm, Dr. Mafrici is committed to promoting awareness, as well as increasing access to mental health support for individuals experiencing the emotional challenges associated with pregnancy, birth and new parenthood.
Outside of work Dr. Mafrici enjoys keeping busy with her two young children, spending time with friends and family, cooking and travelling.
Dr. Michele Foster, Ph.D., C.Psych
Clinic Co-Director, Psychologist
Dr. Michele Foster is a registered clinical psychologist who received her Doctoral degree from the University of Toronto. She works with adolescents and adults experiencing mental health difficulties, including mood and anxiety disorders, addictions, self-harm, disordered eating, trauma, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and difficulty with personality functioning, relationships, and emotion regulation.
Dr. Foster believes that psychological treatment is best tailored to an individual’s unique needs, symptoms, and goals. In the treatment process she draws from Dialectical-Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), and Motivational Interviewing (MI). Dr. Foster values compassion and candidness. She highlights the resilience and strength of her clients, and emphasizes the importance of a strong therapeutic relationship wherein mutual safety, respect, and openness are valued.
Dr. Foster and Dr. Mafrici collaborated to develop Toronto Psychology & Wellness Group (TPWG) with the shared goal of creating a clinic that prioritizes the use of evidence-based treatment within a client-centered and collaborative framework. Prior to the inception of TPWG, Dr. Foster worked within a private Dialectical Behaviour Therapy program, wherein she provided individual, group, and parent-based therapy. Dr. Foster completed her psychological residency at Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences. Specifically, her rotations focused on the diagnosis and treatment of psychosis and related comorbidities, and on the diagnosis and treatment of mood, eating, and anxiety disorders among outpatient clients. Dr. Foster also received clinical training through the Eating Disorder Program at The Hospital for Sick Children, as well as at Toronto General Hospital’s Outpatient Eating Disorder Program. She has a strong interest in the prevention and treatment of disordered eating and weight/shape preoccupation, as well as in the treatment of emotion-regulation difficulties and self-harm. Dr. Foster has presented media literacy, body image, and stress-management workshops at schools throughout Toronto.
Outside of work, Dr. Foster enjoys spending time with family, friends, and her beloved pug. Her passions include baking, seeing movies, interior decor and creating fresh flower arrangements.
Samantha Goren, HBSC, RD
Samantha Goren is a Registered Dietitian who received her HBSc in Food and Nutrition from the University of Western Ontario and completed her dietetic internship at Mount Sinai Hospital. She works with adults with eating disorders and individuals across the lifecycle to meet and sustain their nutrition and lifestyle goals.
Samantha has worked in the field of nutrition and dietetics for 10 years. She spent the first 7 years of her career working as a Clinical Dietitian in Eating Disorders Program at Toronto General Hospital. During that time, Samantha was the resident Dietitian in The University Health Network’s Employee Wellness Program, where she worked with employees to improve their health and lifestyle. More recently, Samantha was on staff at the Waterstone Clinic, a private Eating Disorders treatment centre.
She completed specialized training in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT), Mindful Eating, Motivational Interviewing (MI), and Culinary Arts. Samantha incorporates these skills and treatment modalities into her counselling.
Samantha is invested in eating disorder prevention and the importance of having a healthy relationship with food. She presents on various topics such as: nutrition for eating disorders, emotional eating and healthy lifestyle eating.
Samantha is a mom of three and enjoys spending time with her family and friends. She loves to cook, take on home décor projects and photograph beautiful things.
Samantha is a member of Dietitian’s of Canada and is registered with the College of Dietitian’s of Ontario. Samantha is a member of the Dietitian Mental Health Network and the Integrative and Functional Medicine Network.
Dr. Julia Hussman, Ph.D.
Psychologist, Supervised Practice
Dr. Julia Hussman obtained her Doctoral degree from the University of Toronto. She works with adolescents and adults with a range of mental health concerns, including but not limited to mood and anxiety disorders, emotion dysregulation, trauma, relationship issues and difficulties with personality functioning.
Dr. Hussman has a special interest in transitional aged youth, or those ages 16 to 29. She is sensitive to this critical period of transition to adulthood and understands how challenges during this time may interact with or exacerbate mental health concerns.
Dr. Hussman’s therapeutic approach is flexible, client-centered and integrative; she draws from several evidence-based modalities including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) to meet the unique and emerging needs of her clients. She emphasizes the importance of a solid therapeutic relationship and works to foster a safe space built upon mutual trust, genuineness and empathy. She helps empower her clients towards positive change, growth and meaning.
Prior to joining the TPWG team, Dr. Hussman worked in a variety of health service settings with diverse populations. She completed her clinical psychology residency at the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre where she provided treatment for individuals with severe and persistent mental health concerns, primarily in the Mood and Anxiety Disorders Program, with additional rotations in the Youth Psychiatry and Community Mental Health Programs. She also received clinical training in the Assessment and Reintegration Program at Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences and the Adult Outpatient Mental Health Program at Markham Stouffville Hospital. Dr. Hussman’s research interests are grounded in the developmental stage of Emerging Adulthood and examine how social and cultural influences impact risky health behaviours during this time of life. She has also conducted evaluations of existing health service programs specific to transitional aged youth.
Outside of work, Dr. Hussman enjoys music, canoe trips, cooking and discovering new cuisines, particularly during her travels.
Courtney M. Watson, M.S.W., R.S.W.
Registered Social Worker
Courtney Watson is a registered clinical social worker who received her Master’s Degree from the University of Western Ontario. She works with adolescents and adults struggling with a range of mental health difficulties including mood disorders, anxiety disorders (such as OCD, generalized anxiety, social anxiety, panic, phobias), trauma, disordered eating, relationship difficulties, lack of self-esteem and self confidence, perfectionism, major life transitions (e.g. pregnancy, divorce, job change) and loss.
Courtney’s approach to treatment is tailored to the individual needs of each client, drawing primarily on cognitive-behavioral, psychodynamic, and mindfulness-based approaches. She prioritizes the development of a safe and effective therapeutic relationship in order to facilitate lasting emotional and behavioral change. Her goal is to work collaboratively to help clients increase awareness of their inner world and its influence over relationships both past and present. This understanding can help to change patterns that are no longer working, to alleviate symptoms of distress and to develop insight into underlying causes. In all of her work, Courtney is genuine and empathic.
Courtney has a longstanding interest and particular specialization in the treatment of eating disorders. Prior to joining the Toronto Psychology & Wellness Group, she was an individual and family therapist in the Young Adult Eating Disorders Program at Southlake Regional Health Centre, where she was part of the team that developed this innovative program for transitional aged youth. She has developed and facilitated groups on a range of topics including Body Image, Motivation Enhancement and Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. Courtney has experience working in a range of private practice and community settings. She began her career providing ongoing and crisis counseling to students at the University of Western Ontario.
Outside of work Courtney enjoys spending time with her family and friends and exploring the outdoors with her much loved Airedale Terrier. Her hobbies include skiing, horseback riding and travel.
Samantha Fashler, MA, Ph.D. (Candidate)
Samantha Fashler is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Clinical Psychology program at York University. She completed her masters degree at York University. She works with adults and adolescents with diverse mental health concerns, including anxiety, depression, trauma, addictions, and eating disorders, as well as individuals struggling with physical health concerns, such as chronic pain and cancer.
Samantha’s approach to therapy is integrative, drawing on humanistic principles and using model specific tools on a case-by-case basis to best meet the unique needs of each client. Her preferred treatment approaches include Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT), and Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT). Her evidence-based clinical practice emphasizes developing a strong therapeutic relationship, fostering the ability to access present-moment experiences, and teaching effective strategies for managing difficult emotions and sensations.
Over the course of her training, Samantha has worked with diverse client populations. She completed a clinical placement at North York General Hospital working with clients attending an intensive day hospital program for severe mental health concerns, predominantly major depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder. At York University, she worked with students, staff, and community members presenting with memory and emotional difficulties. In the Anxiety Disorders Centre at Sunnybrook Hospital, she worked with adults with obsessive compulsive disorder and related spectrum disorders. She has additionally worked in a variety of healthcare settings with individuals coping with cancer diagnosis, treatment, or recovery in the Odette Cancer Centre at Sunnybrook Hospital, chronic pain in the Transitional Pain Service at Toronto General Hospital, memory impairment in the Memory Intervention Program at Baycrest Health Sciences, and undergoing weight loss surgery in the Bariatric Surgery Program at Toronto Western Hospital. She aims to help empower clients to feel confident in how to live with chronic conditions that can significantly disrupt their quality of life.
In her spare time, Samantha enjoys spending time with her family and friends. She likes to travel and keeps active by bicycling and doing yoga.
Danielle Kofler, MA, Ph.D. (Candidate)
Danielle Kofler is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Clinical and Counselling Psychology program at the University of Toronto. She completed her masters at the University of Toronto. She works with adults and adolescents who present with mental health difficulties, including anxiety, depression, trauma, substance use, and interpersonal difficulties.
Danielle’s therapeutic approach is integrative in nature and draws from a variety of modalities in order to best fit her client’s needs. She utilizes techniques from Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Motivational Interviewing (MI), and mindfulness-based approaches. She believes that a strong therapeutic relationship is the foundation for clients’ growth and change, and that the journey to change begins by providing an atmosphere of empathy, trust, and support.
Danielle completed several clinical training placements in both hospital and post-secondary settings, specializing in mental health and health psychology. She completed a placement at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre where she provided assessment and therapy services to patients and family members who faced cancer diagnosis and treatment, along with sexual health counselling to patients and couples post-treatment. She also completed a rotation at Toronto Western Hospital’s Bariatric Surgery Program, where she worked with patients who presented with eating disorders, emotional eating, trauma, and body image issues. Danielle also has a longstanding interest in working with young adult populations, as she treated emerging adults and students at University of Toronto’s OISE Psychology Clinic and at York University’s Counselling Centre, who presented with anxiety, depression, relationship issues, substance use,
and emotion regulation difficulties.
Danielle enjoys spending time with her family and friends, running, attending concerts, and travelling.
Sari Goldman, M.S.W., R.S.W.
Registered Social Worker
Sari Goldman is a registered clinical social worker who received her Master’s degree from Wurzweiler School of Social Work, Yeshiva University, New York. Sari works with adolescents, adults, couples and families struggling with mental health, including depression, anxiety, personality disorders and other diagnoses; life transitions such as school or job change, marriage, pregnancy and parenthood; relational difficulties including communication, separation/divorce, and intimate partner violence; trauma and loss.
Sari’s approach to treatment focuses on self-determination and respect for the individual experience, acknowledging that the client is the expert in their own lives. She draws on several therapeutic modalities with certification in Emotion Focused Couples Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Grief and Loss Counselling, Trauma Counselling and Mindfulness approaches. She values and prioritizes the therapeutic relationship in order to best allow for openness, vulnerability and trust to explore histories and facilitate meaningful change. Working collaboratively with clients from a strength-based perspective, therapy is provided in a safe, conﬁdential, non-judgemental and supportive environment. In all areas of practice, Sari brings warmth, authenticity, humour and compassion.
Sari has extensive experience working within a mental health and wellness framework and trauma informed lens. In addition to working at TPWG, Sari has spent the last 13 years as a mental health and violence against women clinical social worker and advocate at Jewish Family & Child. As well, she has been working in private clinical practice for eight years. Through her private practice she often provides clinical consultation and crisis intervention services to camps, schools, community centres and family/social groups. Sari is currently pursuing certification in family dispute resolution and mediation.
Outside of work Sari enjoys time with family and friends, being in nature and walking. You might see her speed walking to and from the office.
Rebecca Smith, M.S.W., R.S.W.
Registered Social Worker
Rebecca Smith is a Registered Clinical Social Worker who received her Master’s Degree in Social Work specializing in mental health from the University of Toronto. Rebecca works with adolescents and adults struggling with a wide variety of concerns including symptoms of anxiety and depression, emotion regulation concerns, self-injury, disordered eating, relationship concerns, and life transitions.
Rebecca’s approach to therapy begins with a focus on building a strong therapeutic relationship in order to create a safe, non-judgemental, and empathic space where clients will feel heard. Rebecca works collaboratively with clients using an evidence-based approach to therapy which is tailored to the unique needs of each individual client. Rebecca draws on elements of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Motivational Interviewing (MI) and Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT) to provide clients with strategies to manage the challenges that they are facing.
Over the course of her training, Rebecca has worked with a wide variety of client populations. Rebecca completed a clinical internship at York University’s Student Counselling and Development where she provided counselling to students experiencing concerns such as anxiety, relationship concerns, stress, self-injury, and disordered eating, among other concerns. Additionally, Rebecca completed a clinical placement at Grant House Addiction Services where she provided 1-1 and group counselling in an inpatient treatment program for women struggling with substance use concerns. Rebecca later went on to join Grant House Addiction Services as an addictions counselor following the completion of her clinical placement. Additionally, following the completion of her Master’s Degree, Rebecca worked in various roles including crisis counselling, Case Management, and private practice.
In her spare time, Rebecca enjoys reading, playing guitar, hiking, and spending time with friends and family.
Amanda Buckingham, M.S.W., R.S.W.
Registered Social Worker
Amanda Buckingham is a registered clinical social worker who received her Master’s Degree from the University of Toronto. She works with individuals that are experiencing a range of mental health concerns, including borderline personality disorder, eating disorders, anxiety, depression, difficulties with confidence and low self-esteem, and dissociative identity disorder. She is extensively trained in Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT) and is passionate about supporting people towards a life worth living.
Amanda was trained in DBT through a clinical placement at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) in their Borderline Personality Disorder Clinic. Prior to that, she worked on the National Eating Disorder Information Centre (NEDIC) helpline where she provided supportive crisis counseling over the phone to people struggling with eating disorders. Additionally, as part of NEDIC’s outreach team, she delivered workshops to schools, healthcare professionals, and fitness studios concerning body image, self-esteem, media literacy, and eating disorders. She also led a group at Sheena’s Place using Radically Open DBT – a type of therapy that targets over control and perfectionism. .
Amanda approaches sessions with a strong sense of compassion and works collaboratively with clients at the beginning of treatment to determine their individualized treatment plan. She recognizes the importance of building a strong therapeutic alliance and a sense of trust, as therapy can be a vulnerable experience. In line with DBT, areas of focus often include mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, interpersonal effectiveness, and self- validation. The idea is to provide clients with practical skills that they can use in their everyday lives, with the goal of reaching and maintaining overall wellness.
Outside of work hours, Amanda enjoys doing martial arts, practicing yoga, and listening to podcasts.
Rossella Galati, MA, RP
Rossella Galati is a Registered Psychotherapist with the College of Registered Psychotherapist of Ontario. Rossella received her Masters Degree in Counseling Psychology from Adler University in Chicago, IL after completing her Honors Bachelor degree in Psychology at York University.
Rossella is an advocate for mental health. Her approach to care is personal, yet professional, and rooted in the fundamentals of trust, security and holistic well- being. Rossella seeks to promote balance, whether focused on the individual or family. Rossella’s areas of practice include treatment for trauma, anxiety, stress, self-esteem, relationship issues, self-harming, substance abuse, grief, alcohol abuse, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Rossella has done extensive training in the treatment of PTSD, and has spent over a decade of her career focused on trauma and addiction treatment specifically. She has experience working with various types of clients from first responders and military members, to others who suffer from anxiety, family conflict, relationship issues, self-esteem and self-harming. Her years of practical experience facilitating PTSD psychoeducational sessions, group therapy, and individual sessions enable her to tailor treatment to meet each of her clients’ unique needs. When applicable, Rossella also involves family and loved ones through family therapy sessions to build a holistic healing environment for those suffering from addiction or other mental health issues.
In addition to her expertise in PTSD and addictions Rossella has completed extensive training in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT), Emotional Focused Therapy (EFT) and is also trained in Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT), Pain Terror Technique (PTT) and Sensorimotor Psychotherapy.
Rossella is fluent in verbal and written Italian. She is an active participant in organized funding activities (i.e., breast cancer research, ALS, etc.).
Michal Gilboa-Hermel, M.A.
Michal Gilboa-Hermel is a registered counselor (OACCPP) with an M.A in clinical child psychology from Bar-Ilan University in Israel, where she was a registered clinical psychologist prior to her move to Toronto. She was also a registered clinical counselor in Vancouver, BC, while living there, and is now working towards her registration with the Ontario College of Psychologists. She works with all age groups, from adolescents to the elderly facing various mental health challenges, including mood and anxiety disorders, prenatal and postpartum disorders, early attachment as well as later parental difficulties, relational and interpersonal difficulties, emotional dysregulation, personality disorders, post and complex trauma and other transitional life difficulties and challenges.
Michal is first and foremost a psycho-dynamic therapist, who believes in the healing power of an empathetic, non-judgmental, containing and beneficial therapeutic relationship, where there is room to pause, question and introspect. Her training focused on object-relations theories, as well as self-psychology and relational psychology, and she is fascinated by the vast effects of early attachment on the individual’s life. Over the years Michal was also trained (and later trained others) in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and she continues to add more evidence-based modalities to her “therapeutic tool box” in order to tailor the best approach to each client’s needs. Among those modalities are: Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Couples Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) and mindfulness-based approaches. She was trained as a parents’ group facilitator at the Adler Center in Vancouver.
Michal’s clinical and professional experience includes psychology positions in outpatient clinic, inpatient day hospital, private practice, non-profits and community settings, both in Tel-Aviv, Israel, and in Vancouver, Canada. Prior to her move to Toronto, she worked in her private practice in Tel-Aviv, and also provided CBT and mindfulness based group workshops and supervision through “Chosen” – a resiliency – building center in Israel. She spent the 4 years before that doing her internship at “Clalit” Health-Services, where she had the opportunity to work individually and in groups with diverse populations, from very young children diagnosed with Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD) through to elderly individuals facing a verity of mental health challenges and life difficulties. In Vancouver, Michal had the privilege of working, among other places, at the British Columbia Society for Male Survivors of Sexual Abuse (BCSMSSA), where she specialized in working with men with sexual-related PTSD. She enjoys working with men and with women, in English or in Hebrew, and continues to be in awe of her clients’ strengths and fascinating journeys through life, which she is honored to take even a small part in.
Outside of work, Michal enjoys spending time with her boys, extended family and friends. She loves an early morning work-out, baking, interior décor and parenthood-related poetry.
Shira Yufe, M.A., Ph.D. (Candidate)
Shira Yufe is a Ph.D. Candidate in Clinical Psychology at York University. She works with adolescents, adults, and couples who are seeking supports for mental health challenges such as anxiety, social anxiety, depression, and relationship difficulties. She also specializes in working with individuals who have chronic medical conditions, targeting pain management and adaptation to illness.
Shira is interested in helping clients reach their goals and meet their therapeutic needs, and she tailors her approach to each individual. She works within the approaches of Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectical-Behaviour Therapy (DBT) and Emotion-Focused Therapy (EFT). She emphasizes flexibility, collaboration, and working towards personal growth and well-being.
Shira currently works as a sexual health counsellor at the Prostate Cancer Rehabilitation Clinic. She sees couples and individuals to address their sexual and relationship concerns following prostate cancer treatment. She also completed a clinical placement at the Princess Margaret Hospital where she developed skills in short and long-term therapy with childhood survivors of cancer, individuals recently diagnosed, and coping with survivorship difficulties. Shira has completed training at the York University Psychology Clinic where she worked with students and staff, focusing on generalized anxiety and mood lability. Additionally, Shira has worked with individuals with severe psychiatric presentations.
Shira loves to teach. She currently teaches a continuing education course in sexual health counselling to health care providers, and has been part-time faculty at Seneca College.
Outside of work, Shira can either be found on a spin bike or a yoga mat. She loves to travel, hike, and explore new places.
Chante Bennett is the Administrative Assistant at TPWG. She received her diploma in Medical Office Administration at Seneca College. She comes with 5+ years of medical office administration experience having worked in several different clinics including the Endocrinology and Allergy Clinics at Sunnybrook Hospital, as well as the Teaching Clinic of the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine. Chante is presently enrolled in the Kinesiology program at York University and hopes to pursue a professional career as an Occupational Therapist. In her spare time, Chante enjoys spending time with friends and family, reading, and being physically active.