About Our Team
At Withersdane Hall, your holistic care is delivered by a multidisciplinary team, comprised of some of the most compassionate and dedicated professionals who will welcome you not into a clinic but a family.
Robin Lefever, BSc (Hons) Psychology
Robin is a skilled therapist and reflecting on his philosophy, his clinical interests include a wide range of therapies including EMDR, NLP, EAP, Psychodrama, CBT, DBT, Sand Play, Ropes Course, Family Therapy and Interventions.
More About Robin
Having lived through the challenges of addiction first-hand within his family from an early age and also being a recovering addict himself, Robin’s experience with addiction and understanding of its implications started long before his involvement in helping others.
His philosophy highlights a unique approach to treatment in that every individual responds differently to each of the various widely recognised treatment modalities available.
With this in mind, Robin, as an active researcher, strives to keep informed and involved in the latest developments within the recovery field. This enables him to provide the greatest set of resources and a variety of approaches to develop a focused and customised treatment plan for each client with the aim of not only achieving, but maximising the benefits of recovery.
Robin has studied addiction treatment for over twenty years. He has a BSc in Psychology from the University of Kent and is also the Managing Director of PROMIS Clinics.
Eric Needham, MSc Addiction, Psychology and Counselling
Senior Therapist & Withersdane Hall Programme Manager
“I feel strongly that happiness is not the goal, but finding meaning and purposeful lives (which is most likely to result in happiness). I believe that abstinence is not an end in itself, but rather a necessary state (for addicts) that improves the overall quality of life and allows meaning and purpose to flourish.”
More About Eric
Under a PROMIS Scholarship Eric was awarded a ‘Merit’ for his MSc in Addiction, Psychology and Counselling. At PROMIS Eric underwent full training for The Minnesota Model as well as Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT), Mindfulness, and researched Anxiety and Depression.
In Paris, Eric worked and studied with Emmanuelle Lacroix (herself a former PROMIS Clinical Therapist), where Eric further specialised in Family Therapy and Addiction.
Eric was responsible for setting up the Business Performance Psychology Unit at ESSEC, a renowned business school in France.
In the treatment setting, Eric uses a full range of treatment modalities, according to the needs of individual clients and patients. His preferred therapeutic methods include; Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT), Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP) and Sports Psychology.
Having formerly taught Management and Marketing on MBA courses at the leading French Business Schools, Eric points out that these approaches are also fundamental and highly effective at enhancing management techniques and interpersonal skills.
Eric believes that recovery should be about tapping into your creativity along with having fun and laughter.
Eric has been a professional musician. He has an honours degree in Theatre Arts, which is particularly useful for Psychodrama and Role Play. He is fluent in French and also speaks some Greek and Spanish. He has worked extensively in a bi-lingual clinical context.
Laimonas Goncaras, MD, MSc, MRCGP, PgDIP(MED), PgDIP(PRESCR), PgDIP(DERM)
“Substance misuse patients need to understand that they are not necessarily ‘bad’ people, but that they suffer from an illness. My patients need and get high degrees of attention to detail. It is usually not just the patient who is affected – as addiction can involve the rest of the family too. Patient-centred care needs to be guided by an appropriately qualified professional, and addiction is no exception”.
More About Laimonas
Dr. Liam is licensed as a General Practitioner with a Special Clinical Interest in Substance Misuse. Since the early days of his career, Dr. Liam was a very keen figure in the Substance Misuse Services in Kent, running a Shared Care Service (methadone and suboxone) for the his practice patients and also being the member of a Steering Group with KCA.
Dr Liam advises other primary care physicians and doctors on substance misuse, painkillers and appropriate prescribing.
RGN and Rehab Nurse
‘Every patient has their own unique set of circumstances and so we apply a holistic approach to each individual person. It is not a case of just applying the same model. We create a unique pathway of care for each patient.’
More About Jo
Jo is a Registered Nurse with a Higher Diploma in nursing education.
Jo has trained as a rehab nurse following her interest in prescription drug addictions and the study of pharmacology. She provides healthcare education sessions to patients on the effects that prescribed drugs have on the body, their modes of action, the damage that can be done and why people become dependent or addicted.
“Everybody deserves the best quality service that can be provided, by highly trained and professional service providers. Being totally committed to achieving a developmental relationship with clients, facilitating their ability for personal and professional growth, is the ethos of the service provided. ‘Healthy in Body, Healthy in Spirit and Healthy in Mind’ is the focus of everything we do.”
More About Keith
Keith Strong qualified in Education, Training and Management with degrees from Greenwich University before undertaking the Life Coaching qualification. Born in London, he spent many years travelling the world in the Health and Fitness industry before setting up a successful business in Life Coaching. He now combines a variety of skills to support and encourage individuals on a holistic life coaching program. Having worked in various large organisations in sectors such as Further Education, the Armed Forces and AXA-PPP Healthcare, he is now developing his life coaching tools and resources to compliment the service provided, for clients suffering from a variety of addictions and PTSD.
Keith Strong now works at Withersdane Hall after running his own Life Coaching and Mentoring business with over 300 clients who have successfully undertaken his services. Has presented a lot of his work on both national and international forums, developing the lives and career paths of many of his clients where individuals, groups and organisations have taken full advantage of the programmes that he runs.
Mental Health Therapist & Dunstan Skillbeck Programme Manager
More About Pall
Pall holds The Icelandic School of Addictions Studies Diploma acknowledged by The International Certification & Reciprocity Consortium. He also has Ericsonian Hypnotist Diploma, a certification in Trauma-Focused Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy and is currently studying for NLP Master Diploma.
As part of his own recovery from alcohol abuse, Pall has been greatly involved in helping others. Over the years, having sponsored over 200 people, Pall notes the encouragement he received to become a therapist as a catalyst for his career in the treatment field.
Pall has joined the Withersdane team in 2015 after a background working several years in the addiction field for SAA Rehab and Family House private clinic.
Vasile Soatia, MSc Psychotheraphy and Social Interventions
More About Vasile
Vasile has earned his master’s degree in Psychotheraphy and social interventions from A.I.Cuza University, in Iasi, Romania. He also has a diploma in Clinical psychology, C.P.R, from The Romanian Psychology Association and trained as an Addiction counsellor by the Jellinek Institute in Holland.
Vasile has over 14 years of experience in Mental Health treatment, working in International Blue Cross Association Addiction centre in Sura Mica, Sibiu county, Romania and in private practice of psychotherapy.
Mental Health Therapist
More About Michele
Certified in DANOS-KCA level 3, Team Leading level 3, Health and Social care level 3, Michele has also completed a number of other courses in boundary training, motivational interviewing, safer injecting, ISOH, breakaway training.
Michele has dedicated the past seven years to working in the drug/alcohol treatment field.
Mental Health Therapist
More About Kevin
Kevin is currently studying for a general Counsellor course at level 4 .
Before joining the Withersdane Hall team, Kevin began his career in the Military, working 12 years in ‘stress management under fire’. He also has 4 years experience in mentoring young adults.
David Neame, BSc (Hons) Person-Centered Counselling
Mental Health Therapist
More About David
Dave has a BSc (Hons) in Person-Centred Counselling with a special interest in the treatment of gambling and body dysmorphic disorder.
Dave’s interest in mental health and substance misuse treatment evolved from his personal experience of recovery. Prior to joining our team, Dave has gained years of experience in volunteer work with major UK charities and organisations such as Mind, Rethink and CRI in addition to working in other clinical/therapeutic environments.
Mental Health Therapist
More About Richard
Arthur Richard has trained as a specialist in addictions and recovery process. Possessing many years of both personal and professional experience, Arthur focuses on helping others change the way they think to change the way they feel.
Mental Health Therapist
More About Sarah
Sarah holds a BA in Sociology and BSc in Psychology.
Healthcare Assistance & Trainee Sober Companion
“When we free ourselves from our mental prisons, our whole outlook and attitude can change and we can start to see the joy in life. But it’s a difficult journey and we need people around us who can relate to what we are going through.”
More About Andy
Andy closely assists clients in all stages of recovery. Combining his personal experience with addiction with an engaging and personable approach, he helps clients discover how to thrive in recovery.
Andy’s background involves a course in counselling, volunteer and full time work with TTP and various care-related positions.