Our Staff

Many Guides, Multiple Paths to Wellness

Executive Director

Earl Blacklock, MALM, MDIV, MC, Senior Therapeutic Counsellor, Parksville and Nanaimo

Earl Blacklock has pursued Masters degrees in leadership and in counselling, as well as post-graduate training in adult education and communications. His goal is to make a difference in the lives of those affected by poverty, substance dependence, and traumatic life events. His serves as an experienced clinician and as the agency’s chief administrative officer.

Counselling Staff

Ian Gartshore, MTh, RCC, Nanaimo

Clinical Supervisor, Senior Therapeutic Counsellor, Marriage and Family Therapist, Registered Clinical Counsellor (RCC #2560)

Ian Gartshore is our founder and our Clinical Supervisor. He served as our founding Executive Director through July 2018. He has been professionally assisting clients for about three decades.

Ian’s specialties are working with couples, anger, anxiety and depression issues, and clinical supervision of new therapists. Ian’s therapy style includes both long-term and short-term counselling approaches, according to the need of the clients. He is highly trained, both in an academic education and in supervised clinical (practical) training. His approach is “holistic”, assisting people become healthy through improving their relationships, rather than blaming or shaming individuals.

Ian is trained in Family Systems (holistic, relationship-based), providing therapy utilizing a variety of styles and situations which allow him to sensitively tailor-make his work for each person and relationship. He is sensitive to cultural, religious, environmental and gender issues. While appreciating religious and spiritual components to a person’s life, he does not seek to convert or change a person’s beliefs. Ian is sensitive and respectful as well as effective at assisting clients to make needed changes.

Rebecca Burgoyne, MSW, Senior Therapeutic Counsellor, Registered Social Worker (RSW #12289) & Registered Clinical Counsellor (RCC #15320) Parksville

Rebecca pursued a career in social work following her experience as a community developer and child advocate in the Philippines. Through these experiences Rebecca became sensitized to the varied strengths which people access in order to overcome hardship and suffering. These encounters have shaped Rebecca’s appreciation for human resiliency and have fostered her commitment to the field.

Rebecca is passionate about joining people in conversations which seek to uncover, strengthen and develop their capacities to overcome the challenges for which they are seeking counselling. She works collaboratively with clients, adjusting her approach to the specific needs and desires of those who consult her. Rebecca engages with clients in a respectful and supportive capacity, with the understanding that their unique values, experiences, and beliefs about life can be the foundation upon which to build meaningful change.

Rebecca has experience within a variety of specialized mental health contexts and has worked with individuals and families across the lifespan. She has completed an internship in child and family therapy, in addition to her experience within adult and geriatric mental health settings. Her specific areas of interest and expertise include working with grief and loss, anxiety, depression, trauma, and stress reduction.

As a registered social worker, fees for her services can be claimed as a health related expense on your yearly income taxes. No referral is required.

Carol Bassingthwaighte MA, Senior Therapeutic Counsellor, Registered Professional Counsellor (RPC #2026), Nanaimo

Carol Bassingthwaighte is grateful for the opportunity to assist and support people through periods and in their process of change. “Change is present in everyone’s life. We all experience ups and downs over the course of our lifetimes. I offer a respectful and compassionate client-centered approach.” Working on a holistic level, Carol takes into consideration multiple factors that may affect a person’s well-being. This includes personal needs, circumstances and yearnings – what one wants to see happen in his/her life. Expanding the window of possibility often leads to a sense of increased choice and ability to move forward on a life enhancing path.

Carol is a Registered Professional Counsellor with a practice that has spanned almost two decades. “I have assisted and supported people dealing with a wide variety of issues. Some of these issues include relationships, addiction, trauma, grief and loss, depression, anxiety and other mental health concerns.”

‘To find the way, close your eyes, listen closely, and attend with your heart.’ ~Anonymous

Anita Chambers, BA, Therapeutic Counsellor and Group Leader, Nanaimo


Anita has  more than 35 years experience in the human service field and 12+ years of direct counselling experience. Her areas of expertise are in parenting, women’s issues, and grief and loss. She is committed to supporting people to build on their strengths, increase self-confidence and develop healthy coping skills to assist them to deal with the challenges they face.

Anita’s principal role with the agency is as a group counsellor / workshop leader, delivering workshops on Shame and Resilience (using the Brené Brown curriculum) and Healthy Emotional Management for those seeking emotional, frustration, and anger management support and education.

Andrea Stenerson, ATR, Parksville

Andrea Stenerson is a registered Art Therapist working out of our Parksville office. Her area of expertise and experience is in working with children and youth dealing with Adverse Childhood Experiences and trauma. 

Bonnie Bergen, Therapeutic Counsellor, Nanaimo

Bonnie, a graduate of the Kelowna College of Professional Counselling, is pursuing a Master of Counselling degree while serving as a therapist for individuals and families. Her work compassionately examines those parts of clients’ lives that hold them back from being emotionally and mentally well. Bonnie also serves our clients as their first point of contact when they want information on our services. Bonnie can be reached by text or message at 250-716-8888.

Dwayne Orser, Practicum Therapist, Nanaimo

Dwayne is nearing completion of his practicum and Master’s degree requirements for certification. He brings to our agency a well-developed set of skills and training, including many years working with those dealing with substance abuse and those requiring skilled intervention. These add depth to his counselling, making him highly effective as a therapist.

Kate Archer, Practicum Therapist, Nanaimo

We welcome Kate Archer as a Practicum Therapist. Kate is completing her Masters degree at Pacifica Graduate Institute. She provides a compassionate approach to her clients, giving them space and the opportunity to tell their story in a supportive, non-judgmental way. Her studies are preparing her for work as a Marriage and Family Therapist. Kate works out of our Nanaimo office.

Jennifer Mcrae, Practicum Therapist, Parksville

Joining our Parksville office in September 2019 is Jennifer Mcrae, who is completing her Masters degree at City University. Her work and academic background is in education and outreach for children, youth, and parents. Jennifer will also be engaged in working with Adolescents using Dialectical Behavioural Therapy.

Melanie Devine, Practicum Therapist, Comox Valley

Melanie is completing her Masters degree in Counselling from City University. She has years of experience working with high risk communities, including youth. Melanie will be delivering our Dialectical Behavioural Therapy program for Adolescents, as well as individual counselling, in the Comox Valley, starting in September 2019.


If you wish to improve your life please contact the office 250-716-8888 or go to the contact us page. Do not post to this website as it is not confidential.

Would you like to meaningfully assist someone’s life? We can provide a charitable tax receipt! Please visit our Donations page.

We gratefully acknowledge financial support by the Province of British Columbia

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