Brighton & Hove CBT
Brighton & Hove | Sussex | 07961 779010

About Us


Sally R Munt

BA (Hons First Class) MA MSc DPhil PGDip FRSA

(Chair and Clinical Director, Brighton Exiled/Refugee Trauma Service [BERTS])

Sally Munt is an experienced cognitive behavioural psychotherapist accredited with the BABCP. She has an MSc in Cognitive Psychotherapy (CBT) from the University of Brighton, which included 4 years of training (2006-10). In addition Sally has a Postgraduate Diploma in Psychiatry (Merit) from the Brighton and Sussex Medical School (2012-14). Sally has a wide range of clinical expertise and has been working with clients first at the University of Brighton Student Counselling Service, and then in private practice since 2006.

In addition, Sally is a leading academic in the study of identity, culture and emotion. In her capacity as Professor of Cultural Studies, she has published widely on understanding how cultural factors can shape our wellbeing. She has particular expertise in shame and identity, gender/sexuality, race/ethnicity, social class, and spirituality. Her latest book (with Sharon Smith and Andrew Kam-Tuck Yip) Cosmopolitan Dharma (Brill, 2016) is concerned with examining how Buddhism is being embraced by minority groups in the UK, in order to support their emotional wellbeing and sense of community.



Colin Blowers

M.A., R.M.N., Dip Behav.Psych. (Maudsley)

(BERTS Trustee and Cognitive Behavioural Therapist)

Colin is a fully accredited member of the BABCP. His career in the NHS began in 1972 and following several years working as a nurse he qualified as a Cognitive Behaviour Therapist in 1981. He then gained a Masters Degree in Developmental Psychology at The University of Sussex. Since leaving the NHS in 1988 he has worked on a freelance basis in the private sector at The Priory Hospital, Roehampton (1988 to 2018). Colin joined the Board of the BABCP in 2016 and is the co-chair of their Scientific Committee.

He now has an office in Brighton and works online, treating people throughout the world. He has presented workshops in The United Kingdom, Czech Republic, Estonia, and Guyana. He has also appeared on several television and radio shows.



Lizzy West

(BERTS Trustee)

Lizzy is originally from London and moved down to Brighton with her son in 2006. She has worked in the NHS Primary Care for over 9 years in various supporting roles. Since 2019 Lizzy has been a NHS Social Prescriber in Brighton and Hove. She says: "It is meaningful work and involves working directly with people to understand their needs. There have been a lot of challenges for so many over the last few years, more so than ever before. I have always been interested and driven to find ways to support and develop communities and individuals. Together we are stronger and every person has something unique they can express and share with others. It is not easy to always feel this if you are struggling, but hopefully with the right setting, support or some creativity it becomes more possible to do so."

Lizzy has qualifications in Aromatherapy and Reflexology and an interest in many complementary therapies as a way of supporting peoples recovery from trauma and mental health management. She adds: "It is important for me to actively engage in community outreach initiatives, collaborating with local organizations and stakeholders to develop programs that enhance community cohesion and social support networks. By fostering partnerships and advocating for the needs of marginalized populations, I would like to contribute to creating an inclusive and thriving community for all."



Alison Lesley

MA in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy and Social Studies 1999, Advanced Diploma in Counselling and Health Care 1994, Certificate in Therapy with Couples 1990

(Psychotherapist: BERTS)

Alison has worked as a psychotherapist for the NHS and in private practice for more than thirty years. Her aim is to help people - individuals, couples and families - live more comfortably with themselves and others, providing a safe place for a person to tell their story and feel listened and responded to. Alison also offers some practical steps to facilitate this process to bring about change.



Kate Hill

(Therapist: BERTS)

Kate Hill completed her Bachelors degree in Psychology in 2009, she then went on to gain a MSc in Mental Health Studies from the Institute of Psychiatry, Kings College, London. She has previously worked in secure and forensic services, specialist trauma services for veterans and child bereavement services and has a specialist interest in working with trauma. She completed her Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Post Graduate Diploma (BABCP accredited) in 2017 and is currently working for the NHS as a CBT therapist. She has also completed additional training in using compassion focused therapy with shame, guilt as well as other symptoms following experiencing a traumatic event and interweaves this approach into her therapeutic work.



Steve Morris

Postgraduate Certificate in Family and Organisational Systems 2017, Doctorate in Clinical Psychology 2000, BSc (Hons) Psychology 1993

(Therapist: BERTS)

Steve is a clinical psychologist qualified for over twenty years and has worked in the National Health Service, working a lot of that time in London with children and families. He now works part-time at Brighton Therapy Centre with some adults, children and families for brief or longer-term work. The therapies he provides are flexible and overlap and are broadly behavioural, cognitive-behavioural, systemic therapy, brief solution-focussed therapy and narrative therapy.



Jane Hoyle

BSc Mental health nursing PGDip psychological therapies

(Therapist: BERTS)

Jane is a fully accredited cognitive behavioural therapist currently working at a University. She had worked in the NHS as a mental health nurse for over 15 years before training as a CBT therapist in 2016 at the University of Sussex. Jane worked within acute services in the NHS and spent 8 years working in an accident and emergency department. She developed a clinic providing therapy for people who self-harm and ran this successfully for 3 years. Jane has provided CBT therapy for complex trauma, psychosis and personality disorder within NHS secondary mental health services.



Shona Cooke

BA( Hons) International Relations. MSc Politics of Rights from Institute of Education. Postgraduate Certificate in Planning and Delivering Training and Post Graduate Diploma in Psychological Therapies.

(Therapist: BERTS)

Shona trained as a CBT therapist in 2018 and worked as a Mental Health Social Worker in London for 16 years prior to this, developing an interest in therapy after studying for a Post graduate Certificate in Working with People with a Personality Disorder. Shona currently works as a Mental Health Practitioner and CBT Therapist on a part time basis within the NHS and practices privately on a part time basis.



Veronica Garcia

(Therapist: BERTS)

Veronica Garcia is a consultant forensic psychiatrist with over 20 years' experience in the assessment and treatment of mental disorders both in secure and acute settings.

Veronica trained as a doctor in Mexico and completed her psychiatric training in London. She has a long-standing interest in psychotherapy both individual and group psychotherapy having diplomas in both psychodynamic psychotherapy and group analysis. She trained as a forensic psychiatrist in Kent, Surrey and Sussex and currently works in a private hospital in Sussex looking after NHS patients.

Veronica has a long-standing interest in trauma and trauma work and is undergoing EMDR training.



Sadia Osmany

Bsc Psychology, Msc War & Psychiatry, PGDip Psychological Therapies

(Therapist: BERTS)

Sadia is a CBT Psychotherapist accredited with the BABCP. She has experience in providing 1-1 support for individuals from marginalised communities in the UK and facilitating trauma-informed community groups. Sadia completed her Masters in War and Psychiatry at Kings College London and after that began working in specialist trauma services across London. She has also trained in Islamic counselling and Narrative Exposure Therapy.

Sadia is currently working part time as a CBT Psychotherapist in primary healthcare services and is now also working at BERTS, using her experience in working with trauma to support those seeking asylum in the UK. She has a special interest in collective trauma and is able to explore cultural nuances to facilitate her work with others.



Victoria Lidbetter

(Therapist: BERTS)

Vicki is an experienced psychotherapist, accredited by the BABCP, BACP and EMDR Association. She also continues to maintain her NMC registration having worked in mental health for more than twenty years. She works in the NHS, private practice and voluntary sectors providing psychotherapy and clinical supervision.

Her interests include Compassion Focused Therapy, Mindfulness, and classic formulation driven CBT. Her main passion in recent years is EMDR and its effectiveness in alleviating the consequences of trauma. She is passionate about supporting clients to find their own unique journey in to freedom from distress, and facilitating therapists to maximize their effectiveness so that both clinicians and clients can flourish.



Dave Isaacs

(Therapist: BERTS)

Dave has worked in several NHS acute and outpatient settings. In clinical research, he supports study participants with depression to undergo psychedelic therapy. His counselling training draws from CBT, mindfulness, and humanistic therapies.



Giulia Giansiracusa


(Clinical Psychologist: BERTS)

Giulia holds a Bachelor Degree in Behavioural Sciences and a Masters Degree in Cognitive Applied Psychology. During a work experience in Italy as a support worker and Italian teacher with refugees and asylum seekers, she obtained a postgraduate specialisation in Cross-cultural Psychiatry and Migration Psychology. In Italy she was also the co-founder of the "Narrativi Digitali" project (, that promotes the use of a narrative approach in psychological counselling. She is very interested in understanding how culture and political events can affect psychological wellbeing.



Reem Abushawareb

MA International Journalism

(BERTS Trustee and Social Media Officer)



Tessa Axelrod

(BERTS Trustee and Researcher and Support Worker)

Tessa is a qualified paramedic interested in researching the mental health needs of refugees and asylum seekers in the city as part of her master studies in Global Health at BSMS.



Sally Goodwin

(Operations Manager: BERTS)

Sally has lived in Brighton and Hove for many years and has a background in business administration, support tutoring and wellbeing. An enthusiastic amateur singer and gardener, currently learning Portuguese and Brazilian music.



John Rignell

(Pilates Teacher – BERTS therapists team)

John runs gentle exercise classes for BERTS service users. These classes are kindly hosted and subsidised by the Brighton Quakers Meeting House, Middle Street, Brighton, and are every Wednesday at 3.00. There is no charge and people are welcome to drop in. If you are a refugee and would like to join this group please email



Itziar Aldecoa Tamayo

(Support Worker: BERTS)

Itzi is a doctoral researcher at the Astronomy Centre of the University of Sussex. She is specialised in cosmology and does calculations to understand what happened seconds after the Big Bang. She enjoys gardening, live music and the outdoors. She is originally from Madrid, but left when she turned 18 and has lived in 3 different countries since then. She loves moving to new cities and making them her home and hopes to help others in that transition.



Yasemin Birmek

(Support Worker: BERTS)

From İstanbul, Turkey, Yasemin moved to England for her Clinical Psychology masters in the University of Sussex. She is currently doing a second masters in Forensic Psychology at the University of Goldsmiths and also studied psychology as an undergrad in Sabanci University in İstanbul. Yasemin did three internships in two different mental hospitals and one private clinic and is therefore familiar both with the theories and the practices of most of the mental health disorders.



Naomi Lester

(Support Worker: BERTS)

Naomi has been living in Brighton for almost 10 years (born in Belgium) and is now working in the fundraising team of the charity Médecins Sans Frontières‎ (Doctors without Borders).

She enjoys meeting new people, learning new languages, reading and going for cycle rides.



Alara Kinaci

(Support Worker: BERTS)

Born and raised in Istanbul, Alara came to the UK five years ago as an undergraduate student and recently completed a master's in conflict, security and development. Alara is very passionate about human rights and follows political events very closely but also enjoys spending free time reading and having a picnic outside with friends when the weather is nice. Alara also loves photography and won't go anywhere without her camera.



María Cecilia Ayalde Ángel

(Support Worker: BERTS)

María Cecilia is a sound engineer and bolero singer from Bogotá, Colombia. She left South America in 2019, when she had the marvellous opportunity of interning for a classical music studio in Vienna, Austria. Following this experience she obtained a full scholarship (granted by the British Council) to study Cultural and Creative Industries at the University of Sussex. She culminated her degree with a distinction qualification and continues to reside in Brighton and Hove after obtaining a Global Talent Visa (under the official endorsement of the Arts Council).



Adela Johnston

(Support Worker: BERTS)

Adela has been a welfare officer for international students for 18 years. She holds MSc in Experimental Psychology and is currently training to be a psychotherapist.



Jessica Sellwood

(Support Worker: BERTS)

Jessica has lived in Brighton now for six years, originally from Bournemouth, just a little further south within England and moving to Brighton because she fell in love with it and what it has to offer and now considers it her home.

Jessica studied BSc Psychology at Sussex University several years ago, becoming passionate about mental health and the importance of being kind and supportive to those struggling with their mental health.

Since her degree, Jessica has had five years experience as a support worker working both with children and adults with mental health needs and struggles, as well as two years training in counselling and is looking towards a career as an integrative therapist in the future.

A caring person, Jessica thinks it is important to be kind and caring to others. You never know what someone's been through and everyone has the right to feel included, safe and happy.

In her day to day, Jessica enjoys spending time with friends and housemates, going on walks, listening to music, boxing and having a pint at the pub.



Azusa Kato

(Support Worker: BERTS)

A Master's student at the University of Sussex, studying human rights, Azusa is interested in children's rights and refugee protection. She was born and raised in Japan and enjoys yoga, travelling around and meeting new people.



Alyshia Gouldsbrough

(Project Assistant: BERTS)

Currently doing a masters at Sussex University in Conflict, Security and Development, Alyshia is passionate about studying representations and portrayals of development and conflicts. During her spare time, she enjoys reading, listening to music and trying new foods/cuisines.


Meredith Henson and David Guest

(IT technical team: BERTS)

Meredith and David kindly donate their time to support the website and patient data management in order to keep our IT systems running smoothly.