Yolanda is a Registered Psychologist with over 15 years of experience working in mental health, and is particularly passionate about working with young people and their families. Her work has focussed on complex cognitive and neuropsychological assessments, and working with neurodevelopmental and neurocognitive disorders. Committed to ongoing professional development, she is in the final stages of completing a PhD at the University of Queensland, developing better ways to support our students on the Autism spectrum in mainstream education. Yolanda is also a busy mum of three, and enjoys spending time with her family, and anything that involves being outdoors.
Yolanda completed postgraduate training in both Orthopedagogics (developmental psychology) and Clinical Neuropsychology in The Netherlands, with a focus on paediatric assessment and treatment of neurodevelopmental disorders. She gained extensive experience in working with families and children, particularly those impacted by developmental disorders such as Autism spectrum disorder, and family trauma. Yolanda has lived in South Africa, where she worked as a Neuroconsultant to a private neurorehabilitation clinic in Johannesburg, an Educational Psychologist in a Johannesburg-based primary & secondary school for disadvantaged girls, and as a senior psychologist at the Aurum Institute, in rural Eastern Cape, working with disadvantaged communities. She went on to study MSc Medicine Child Health (Paediatric Neurodevelopment) at the Witwatersrand University, Johannesburg, before moving to Australia in 2013. Since then, Yolanda has worked as both a lecturer and researcher with the College of Medicine & Dentistry at James Cook University, and a Psychologist with JCU Student Wellbeing. She has also held a mental health clinician position with Headspace, as well as the role of Regional Coordinator Mental Health with Primary Health Network (PHN) QLD, providing her with invaluable insight into, and connections with, our regional mental health community.
Yolanda has a vast set of skills and experience in the psychological and neurodevelopmental assessment of children, and a broad range of interventions such as CBT, ACT, neurofeedback therapy, EDMR therapy, family and play-based therapy. Yolanda is a registered psychologist (General Registration) with AHPRA, and holds (associate) memberships with EMDR Association Australia (EMDRAA), Australian Psychology Society (APS), Australasian Neuroscience Society (ANS), and Australian Brain Alliance and Community of NeuroScientists at JCU (CNS@JCU), a network of academics and health professionals interested in neuroscience and brain research.