This site uses cookies that store non-personal information to help us improve our site.

Meet the Team

Sam Summerton
Business Administrator

Sam has a Professional Certificate in Management and Diploma in Statistics. She has extensive knowledge and experience in a variety of business functions including dealing with various aspects of quality assurance, Human Resources, contract compliance, strategic planning and is qualified to undertake Occupational Testing. She has worked with a range of organisations, most recently in a Secure Children’s Home.

Sarah Smith
Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist

Sarah Smith is a BABCP accredited Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist. She has over 10 years’ experience in working therapeutically with children and young people with a variety of complex emotional and behavioural needs. Her specialism is in working with trauma and sexually harmful behaviour.

Sarah has a background both Forensic psychology and Psycho dynamic therapy. She has experience of working with children and young people in the community, specialist schooling and residential placements and secure settings. Sarah has significant experience in both conducting in depth assessments and delivering intervention on both an individual and group level. Sarah has also offered clinical supervision and IMPACT counselling to staff working with highly complex clients.

Emma Hutchings

Emma is a soon to be qualified Doctor of Forensic Psychology. Since achieving her 1st class hons degree in Psychology (BSc) and gaining her MSc in Forensic Psychology Emma has developed her skills in working with a variety of complex and challenging client groups across a range of settings. Whilst training as a Forensic Psychologist Emma has acquired specialist knowledge, understanding and experience in risk assessment and risk management.

Emma has worked providing consultancy to looked-after children’s residential units, families in the community and multi-disciplinary safeguarding teams. In these roles Emma worked with staff and families to identify risk and provide risk management strategies and interventions. Emma has also worked in HM Prison service where she was responsible for conducting comprehensive psychological / risk assessments and providing psychological input at parole board hearings. She is trained in delivering group intervention programmes and has developed and delivered one-to-one interventions for those more complex prisoners unable to take part in group work.

Emma recently completed her Doctorate thesis on the subject of risk assessment with children reported missing to the Police, child sexual exploitation and trafficking. This research has been presented at a number of conferences across the UK.

Sharon Branagh

Sharon is a Behaviour Specialist and Therapist with over 25 years’ experience of working with children and adults who have mental health difficulties, learning disabilities and complex needs. Having trained with the Institute of Applied Behaviour Analysis and worked in clinical and therapeutic settings, her speciality is in undertaking behaviour / risk assessments and providing behaviour management plans. These focus on the positive intervention of proactive strategies which prevent and reduce challenges alongside reactive strategies which are based upon low arousal theory and practise. Sharon also provides training and support for staff / families / carers / parents to implement the plans and 1:1 sessions to teach coping strategies and techniques incorporated into agreed plans.

Aside from this, Sharon teaches for the NHS ‘Expert Patients Programme’, the Recovery College, Adult Education, the Isbourne Holistic Centre and is part of an Outreach Project delivering wellbeing sessions within the HM prison service.

Ella Hoskins
Assistant Psychologist

Ella graduated from Nottingham Trent University in 2013 with a First-class honours degree in Psychology and Criminology. Since completing her degree Ella has spent time working and volunteering in a range of settings. This includes the homeless sector, orphanages (South Africa), supporting young carers, providing health and wellbeing advice and child and adolescent mental health support services. Prior to working at DGF psychology Ella spent several years delivering Therapeutic Treatment Programmes within a forensic setting to adult males who had sexually offended. Through experience gained this has led to an interest in working with individuals who present with challenging behaviour, offending behaviour, sexually harmful behaviour and have learning disabilities/ mental health difficulties.

Janet Hardman
Chartered Consultant Clinical Psychologist

Janet is a Chartered Consultant Clinical Psychologist with specialist knowledge of challenging behaviours and forensic needs; wide ranging experience in supporting accommodated children and young people; and working with individuals with a learning disability of all ages in the community, residential, familial, and forensic settings.

Janet has over 20 year’s experience in the delivery of psychological interventions and services within both the NHS and independent sectors and has consulted for the Care Quality Commission. She has been at the forefront of promoting non-aversive low arousal approaches. She is an experienced manager and team leader. Janet currently provides specialised assessments, individual therapeutic interventions, staff support, supervision and training, and service level reviews and interventions. Alongside this she offers reports and assessments for the legal system including Child and Family and Criminal matters. She has completed Bond Solon expert witness training and is a qualified EMDR practitioner.

Beth Pell (Key)
Associate Psychologist & Senior Behaviour Management Consultant

Beth has worked in the independent sector for 12 years, supporting individuals within the child and adolescent, learning disabilities and mental health fields. She has worked in and managed services within the independent sector, including community and supported living services.

Beth’s interests lie within the adult learning disability and Mental Health field, in residential and supported living settings.

In particular this relates to physically challenging behaviour, self-harming behaviours, sexually harmful behaviours, and working with personality disorders.

Beth currently provides 1:1 therapeutic support to individuals, and works with staff teams around behaviour management and providing training, as well as specialising in conducting psychosexual and cognitive assessments, and complex risk assessments with young people and adults. Beth has a degree in Psychology and has undertaken foundation work in Person Centred Counselling.

Download our brochure