Leona Molloy

M.S.W. | R.S.W. | CTPC.

CLINICAL Social Worker

Leona Molloy

When people endure trauma and intense emotional pain it is not unusual for them to feel overwhelmed, out of control and as though their lives are coming apart at the seams. My therapeutic approach is grounded in a humanistic and strengths perspective. I believe that fostering genuine relationships and nurturing resilience can help clients establish safety, awareness, competency and acceptance; that promoting self-compassion can assist people to move more easily toward the change and wellness they desire.

I have been a registered social worker since graduating with my Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) in 2000, thus my experience spans close to two decades providing community support to individuals, groups and families with complex needs. I have held positions in the areas of disability supports, youth corrections & youth services, adolescent mental health & addictions and most recently as a clinical social worker providing counseling to children and families involved with our provincial child protection agency. In a volunteer capacity, I am privileged to have been an originating member of the leadership team for Camp Eclipse LGBTQ youth leadership camp.

In 2013, I received my Master of Social Work (MSW) specializing in Health/Mental Health with Collaborative Studies in Addictions from the University of Toronto and was fortunate to have completed my practicum studies at the Borderline Personality Disorder Clinic through the Center for Addiction and Mental Health. This advanced clinical placement afforded me invaluable training in Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT) – a stage one trauma treatment- which I delivered in the context of individual psychotherapy, group skills training  and crisis intervention with individuals who suffered from traumatic stress, concurrent disorders, substance abuse, depression, anxiety, eating disorders, emotion dysregulation, self-harm and life-threatening behaviour. DBT has been proven effective in addressing an expansive spectrum of problems by teaching clients skills to enhance their intrinsic capacities for Emotion Regulation, Distress Tolerance, Self- Awareness, Empowerment, Relationship Effectiveness and in the words of DBT originator Marsha Linehan to ultimately “Build A Life Worth Living”.

While my preferred therapeutic approach is DBT, comprised of Mindfulness Practice and Cognitive Behavior Therapy, I recognize that no single approach fits all and am flexible to adapt my interventions according to the individual. I readily draw from my professional learning and training in other therapeutic approaches including emotion focused therapy, solution focused therapy, the neurorelational model, motivational interviewing, attachment theory, and in 2018 attained the credential of Certified Trauma Practitioner through the National Institute for Trauma and Loss in Children (US).

Some of the qualities I value most are authenticity, kindness and humor; I strive to cultivate these talents, both within myself and my relationships with others. As a therapist, I recognize that we are fallible and strongly endorse the DBT assumption “we are ALL just doing the best that we can”. I must frequently remind myself about the importance of work-life balance and while I am inclined to spend most of my downtime with my fur babies in our sanctuary by the ocean, I also enjoy travel, ethnic (or any) food  really, a good latte, and dancing to live music in our own great city and beyond!