Sunshine Coast

News Updates

16 March 2011

Cameron Aggs led a conversation around mindfulness as a means of enhancing self-care for professionals who routinely prescribe self-care as a part of their work. This conversation explored mindfulness as a theoretical construct, and the question of whether developing a formal mindfulness practice enables a more sophisticated understanding of mechanisms of change associated with mindfulness-informed treatments. The discussion touched on mindfulness in the context of case conceptualisation and formulation skills.

Cameron Aggs (M.Psych) MAPS is the Director of Mindfulness Training Australia. He is a registered psychologist in private practice in Maroochydore. Cameron has been involved with mindfulness practices for approximately 15 years. He has lectured in the undergraduate psychology program at the University of the Sunshine Coast, and has facilitated numerous training workshops in mindfulness for clinicians, teachers, G.P's and the general public. Cameron's interests centre around the organisational, interpersonal and well-being applications of mindfulness. He is particularly interested in how mindfulness may promote therapist factors associated with client outcomes, and whether mindfulness as a process of internal attunement might enable similar psychological processes (associated with maturation) as attuned relationships. He is the principle developer of the Mindful Therapy (MT) program, the results of which have been published by the Journal of Counselling and Psychotherapy Research (U.K.).

For more information go to the website

28 April 2011

Dr Watts will be speaking on the topic of "Separation and divorce: Making order of the chaos"

One of the most profound impacts upon the developing child is the separation of his or her carers. Making order in the lives of the parents and children is a critical priority for the professional. In this session, Dr Phil Watts, a psychologist with 20 years experience and a court appointed expert in over 600 family court custody assessments, explains how parents react and how to help them act in a healthy fashion for the benefit of the children. In particular, he discusses the impact of different parenting arrangements upon children, what is necessary for shared care, and when shared care may not be advised.

Dr Phil Watts is a well known West Australian clinical and forensic psychologist. His qualifications include Doctor of Philosophy, Master degree in Clinical Psychology, Graduate Diploma in Organisational Psychology, and a Bachelor of Applied Science- Psychology. Dr Watts has also completed further training in clinical hypnotherapy and EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing) amongst other techniques. His professional work entails a combination of training, forensic work and general clinical practice. The clinical work involves using therapy and counselling techniques to assist people overcome problems. He has a broad area of interest including depression, trauma and PTSD, anxiety, relationship issues, self-esteem, and grief. Clinical work includes treatment of both victims of crime and offenders. He has worked with pornography addiction, sex offenders, and related conditions. His interest is in brief strategic interventions rather than long-term therapy. Dr Watts has been court appointed expert in over 750 Family Court custody assessments and a growing number of Care and Protection Applications in the Children's Court of WA. He conducted assessments of various factors (cognitive impairment, differential diagnosis etc.) of children, adolescents and adults for private psychiatrists, psychologists and other agencies. His interest in family issues has also involved running workshop in areas related to best interest of children in divorce and separation.

Dr Watts is also presenting additional workshops on the Sunshine Coast. For additional information please follow the links

22 June 2011

Jenny Melrose will do a presentation on the Transtheoretical Model of Behaviour Change - otherwise known as the Stages of Change. The transtheoretical model posits that health behaviour change progresses through six stages of change: precontemplation, contemplation, determination/preparation, action, maintenance and relapse. The model can help clinicians to assess a client's readiness to act on a new healthier behaviour and deliver stage appropriate brief interventions.

Jenny Melrose is a psychologist and trainer who has worked in the area of comorbidity for 12 years in both government and non-government sectors. She has a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts with majors in psychology as well as a Masters of Education in Adult Education majoring in human resource development. She has also recently obtained Certificate IVs in Alcohol and Other Drugs and Mental Health. Jenny is the author of the 2007 NSW Health publication Mental Health Reference Resource for Drug and Alcohol Workers, Manly Drug Education and Counselling Centre's (MDECC) Trimming the Grass and most recently has co-authored a chapter ‘Alcohol and Young People' in the 2009 book Practical Interventions for Young People at Risk.

Jenny, through her business JEMECO Psychology, has provided training throughout Australia and Indonesia and runs a private practice in Maroochydore on the Sunshine Coast of Queensland.

Jenny will be running three workshops on the Sunshine Coast in 2011:

  • I think I can, I know I can: Skills for working with clients who use substances: Thursday, 9 June, 2011
  • A Tea Party in Wonderland: Skills for the many facets of mental health and substance use work: Thursday, 25 August, 2011
  • Don't Panic! Interventions to use with clients experiencing anxiety: Thursday 3 November, 2011

For more information go to her website at