About Us

Relational Minds is a unique, multidisciplinary team of professionals who are passionate about the mental health of children and their families. We are a team of experienced psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, art therapists, nurses, mental health clinicians and other contractors who take a collaborative and holistic approach to mental health care. We believe that our integrated approach, built on the principles of playfulness, acceptance, curiosity and empathy can help families take steps towards healing and recovery.

Established in 2019 from humble beginnings, Relational Minds has supported countless families through their journey to recovery. The experience of walking side by side with our families contributes to the growth of our knowledge and expertise. Our resilience allows us to support our clients through innovation and flexibility in an ever-challenging world.

We are focused on providing evidence-based care delivered with connectedness and acceptance. We consider the complexities within the individual, their family and their outside world to collaboratively formulate a plan that establishes emotional safety and promotes emotional development.

Our Mission

To build a hopeful world for children who will become emotionally intelligent adults, through safe relationships with their carers.

Our Vision

To be nationally renowned for quality family treatment that inspires confidence in carers to support their child’s emotional development.

Meet Our Team

Dr Alberto Veloso

Psychiatrist

Alberto is a specialist Child and Family Psychiatrist and General Paediatrician, from Melbourne, Australia. He is a fellow of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists, and the Royal Australian College of Physicians. He is passionate about Child and Family Mental Health with a particular focus on understanding and assisting the emotional development of children and adolescents. His clinical focus is assessing and treating mental health problems by integrating our understandings about brain development, the impact of relationships on emotional maturity and evidence based biological and psychological treatments.

Alberto’s current roles include:

  • Director of Relational Minds, Child and Family Mental Health Clinic
  • Consultant Psychiatrist, Child and Youth Mental Health Service at Mildura Base Hospital
  • Consultant Psychiatrist, Emerge Program, Headspace Onkaparinga, Adelaide
  • Consultant Psychiatrist to Child Protection Service, Department of Health and Human Services, Mallee Region
  • Consultant Psychiatrist to Burrun Dalai Aboriginal Corporation, child Protection Services, Kempsey, Tamworth, Taree, NSW.
  • Chair and Clinical Lead – Clinical Advisory Group – Integrated Area-Based Health Systems Project for Out Of Home Care children, Mallee Region
  • Scientific Advisory Committee, Mental Health Foundation of Australia

Alberto provides integrated and holistic mental health care. He has specialist training in the assessment of mental health disorder including Mood disorders, Bipolar Disorder, Psychosis, Substance Abuse Disorders, PTSD, Eating Disorders, ADHD and Autism Spectrum Disorder. He is skilled in the biological and psychological treatment of mental health disorders which may include prescribing medications or engaging in individual and/or family therapy.

Graduating from Monash University in 2002, Alberto underwent paediatric training at The Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne (RCH) to become a General Paediatrician. His specialty training experiences included Paediatric Neurology, Paediatric Gastroenterology, Emergency Medicine and Neonatal Intensive Care. He entered Psychiatry training at Austin Health and Progressing to Advanced Training in Child Psychiatry at The Royal Children’s Hospital. His specialty training experiences in psychiatry included roles in Developmental Neuropsychiatry Program and the Banksia Inpatient Adolescent Unit at RCH.

Since 2017, Alberto has been focused on Attachment Focused Family Therapy and Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy. A therapy approach developed by Dr Daniel Hughes for the care of children in foster care (Out Of Home Care). He implements Dyadic Developmental Practice with families who are noticing emotional difficulties in their young people,. He works with foster carers and the child protection system to achieve holistic care for children in out of home care. He supervises clinical teams (Child Youth Mental Health Services and Headspace) to provide high quality mental health care. He consults to schools and other organisations to implement the understanding of emotional development into their core business. He provides clinical supervision to professionals (eg. Paediatricians) to build their knowledge and expertise in the treatment of child and adolescent mental health disorders. 

Alexia Naef

Psychologist

Lexi is a registered psychologist working in Melbourne. She is passionate about the assessment and management of mental health disorders affecting children, adolescents and their families. She is skilled in assessment of psychological functioning including the use of standardised measures such as the Wechsler Intelligence Schedule for Children or the Personality Assessment Inventory.

Lexi’s psychotherapy specialties include Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Acceptance Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Attachment Focused Family Therapy or Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy (DDP). She is passionate about sharing her knowledge and experience with others in the form of clinical guidance and providing professional development teaching.

Lexi first trained in Media and Communications and worked in event management prior to developing an interest in Psychology. Her extensive experience in the industry includes work in the Education Department, Take Two (Therapeutic service for children in out of home care), Autism Assessment Team, private counselling (Headspace) and Acute Crisis Intervention Services. She holds a current role as a Lead Clinician in the Bendigo Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services Team (CAMHS), Kyneton Campus. Lexi has a wealth of knowledge in the assessment and treatment of mental disorders that has proven useful in providing clinical guidance and leadership in a variety of workplace settings. 

Amanda Borg

Family Clinician

Amanda is a credentialed mental health nurse with over 15 years of experience working as a mental health clinician, supervisor and educator in the field of infant, child, adolescent and family mental health.

Amanda is passionate about supporting families to understand their story and help parents and caregivers to see the world through their child’s eyes. Amanda will focus therapy and treatment depending on the client and family’s need. Her aim is to support your journey towards recovery utilising attachment, psychodynamic thinking and trauma theory.

Amanda’s experience includes working across inpatient and outpatient public mental health settings treating various mental health disorders. Amanda incorporates elements of various therapeutic modalities including, Acceptance and Commitment therapy (ACT), infant psychotherapy, psychodynamic thinking, Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), Family Therapy, Yoga and Mindfulness. Amanda focuses on creating a space that encompasses the elements of PACE (playfulness, acceptance, curiosity and empathy).

Amanda is also a yoga teacher, runner and lover of coffee. 

Jess Brown

Family Clinician

Jess is a counsellor with a background in drama, professional organising and primary school teaching. She has a Master degree in Human Services Counselling, where she was trained in many evidence based modalities. Having worked as a wellbeing coordinator at a school, she has supported children and parents with school refusal, anxiety, grief and funding for students with disabilities.

Jess is passionate about mental health for all and is person centred, ensuring people from all backgrounds, cultures, religions, sexual orientation and gender identities feel safe and supported in therapy. 

Mel Hansford

Family Clinician

Mel is our functional recovery clinician specialising in assisting and supporting young people and their families to identify their purpose and passions for a connected, fulfilling life with a focus on personal empowerment. She is a nurse registered with AHPRA, with experience in adolescent mental health within hospital and outreach settings spanning 15years. She is passionate about creation of safe space and is committed to providing a holistic framework of support to young people and their families.

Mel is an advocate for personal development and growth mindset, with awareness of the importance of always being curious and accepting. She is also a Reiki Practitioner, and is currently undertaking Reiki Mastership studies with intentions set for developing safe space connections and holistic focussed group facilitation.

After graduating as a nurse in Cairns, Queensland, she worked for QLD Health in an acute public mental health facility. She relocated to Melbourne in 2008, where she has continued working with adolescents and their families in private inpatient wards and outreach. 

Cathy Custy

Family Clinician

Cathy is a Social Worker, Family Therapist and Play Therapist with over 15 years of experience working as a mental health practitioner, clinical supervisor, and educator in the field of child, adolescent and family mental health. She has a passion for undertaking mental health assessments and exploring what is getting in the way of her clients being able to participate more fully in life. In her work, Cathy aims to form a therapeutic relationship that is non-judgemental and based on empathy and trust.

As a family therapist, one of the assumptions that underpins Cathy’s practice is that, at their core, parents want to be the best that they can for their child, and children long for their parents to love them, understand them and be alongside them on their life journey. With this in mind, Cathy believes that relationships are key to recovery and invites key attachment figures to participate in the assessment and therapy of children and young people referred to her. Attachment, psychodynamic, and trauma theories underpin her practice and assist her to understand clients at a deep level. She is particularly interested in the intergenerational transmission and developmental impact of unresolved grief and loss, unhealed relational hurts, trauma, and mental health issues on children and their families. She also uses a systemic framework to assess the unique needs of each young person as an individual and within the context of their relationships with family, community, culture and she promotes partnering with professionals and other services to achieve therapeutic goals and outcomes.

Cathy has a deep and abiding respect for the young people and parents that take on this challenging but potentially healing process and is continually touched by their courage, and openness. 

Dilan Kent

Family Clinician

“Lani” is a social worker working in Melbourne after completing her Masters in Social Work. She is passionate about supporting young people and their families through vulnerable times. With a warm, relaxed style balanced by understanding and empathy, Lani tailors therapy depending on clients’ needs and goals, emphasising a strong relationship between client and therapist.

Lani brings strong advocacy skills and an empathetic approach to her work when supporting young people through unsafe or difficult experiences. She has had experience working across inpatient and outpatient settings through private and public mental health treating various mental health disorders. Lani incorporates elements of various therapeutic modalities, including Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy (DDP), motivational interviewing (MI), cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioural therapy (DBT), Solution-Focused Therapy (SFT) and mindfulness in her approach.

Lani focuses on creating a safe and supportive environment where all issues and difficulties can be explored without judgement. She assists with skill practice which leads to increased self-esteem, better communication, enhanced trust, improved conflict management, healthy functioning, and more satisfying relationships with self and others. 

Emma Noack

Art Therapist

Emma Noack is a practicing art therapist residing in Melbourne, Victoria. She has a passion for nature, neuroscience and connecting people with creativity in their everyday life. Emma values building long-term therapeutic relationships to work on mental health issues in a transformative way. She has a Master of Art Therapy, professional membership with ANZACATA and a Youth Mental Health First Aid Certificate.

Emma has a particular interest in art materials and the client’s relationship to them. She has a history of working with trauma, girls with autism and LGBTQIA+ clients in high school, kindergarten and community settings.

Emma has a background in fine arts and art history prior to becoming an art therapist. 

Denise Verlander

Administration

Denise is our friendly Administration Clerk who will be the first person to greet you on your journey with Relational Minds.

Denise has a career spanning over 30 years in Administration within private hospital, educational and government settings; she graduated from RMIT University (Business Admin) and has a great knowledge and ability to manage all admin responsibilities.
Denise manages the schedules of each of our consultants at Relational Minds, and will assist with booking your appointments, looking after your accounts, and managing your Medicare claiming. She is always more than happy to help with any other information or questions you may have and looks forward to welcoming you to Relational Minds.