Children’s mental health matters.
We need to treat a child’s mental health just like we do their physical health, by giving it thought and attention and, when needed, extra supports. The Staunton Farm Foundation and a team of advisors knowledgeable about children’s mental health are helping Kidsburgh bring a series of stories as well as helpful resources on mental health to you. Please meet our advisors.
Megan Cook is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Board Certified Art Therapist. For the past five and a half years, she has treated clients of all ages who have experienced or witnessed violence, crime, and interpersonal trauma. She is a certified Level 1 EMDR Therapist, and is trained in Parent Child Interaction Therapy and Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. She utilizes Art Therapy to enhance communication to self and others, process trauma and grief, and move towards growth and wellness. She specializes in working with children and their parents to repair the relational wounds created by trauma.
Rachel Cunningham (Westmoreland County) is director of development at Mental Health America of Southwestern Pennsylvania and coordinator of Ray of Hope, Westmoreland County’s suicide awareness and prevention taskforce. A suicide loss survivor herself, she is passionate about advocating for additional mental health resources for those experiencing mental illness and their families.
Will Davies, Dept. of Psychiatry, Allegheny Health Network, is the Founder and Supervisor of the CHILL Project. Baldwin High School and Pleasant Hills Middle School are piloting a mindfulness curriculum. A licensed counselor and a behavioral health educator in each school delivers this new program. The CHILL Project focuses on preventive, skill-based learning to enhance the mindful awareness and resilience of the entire school community. There is also a special emphasis on educator training and wellbeing.
Patti Ghubril, ATR-BC, LPC, ATCS is an Assistant Professor of Art Therapy at Seton Hill University. She specializes in the field of trauma, and most recently served as an art therapist and Licensed Clinical Professional Supervisor at Center for Victims in Pittsburgh, PA.
Ryan Klingensmith, LPC, NCC, is a licensed counselor and founder of Shape the Sky an organization dedicated to Creating Responsible Kids on Smartphones. Through parent, professional, and youth trainings, combined with online resources, Shape the Sky provides the community with the tools needed to raise digitally responsible citizens. His mission is to educate adults about social media and advocate for kids’ mental health. He also provides educational mentoring to at-risk students K-12 at the Montour school district.
Sarah McCluan is the Supervisor of Communication Services at the Allegheny Intermediate Unit (AIU) where she is responsible for the integrated marketing, public relations and communication efforts of the AIU’s nearly 130 programs and services. She is the AIU’s media spokesperson and collaborates with constituent groups across Allegheny County and southwestern Pennsylvania. Through her role at the AIU, Ms. McCluan also serves as the media spokesperson for the Duquesne City School District.
Nora Minahan has 23 years of experience in public education as a special education teacher and a high school counselor.
Renée Schmitzer is the Family Empowerment Coordinator at Jeremiah’s Place, Western Pennsylvania’s only crisis nursery for children and families, birth to six. Renée works with families to set up services and provide resources and referrals. She has a masters in Applied Developmental Psychology with a concentration in Infant Mental Health. Her passion is supporting parents of young children to be the best parent they can be.