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Meet our Practitioners

Nici Maxwell (she/her) and Jackson and Cleo 

Hi! My name is Nicola but everyone calls me Nici. I am the founder of PAWS CIC and the proud mumma of Jackson, Rudy and Cleo. I work with my black Labrador Jackson, going into schools and supporting young people. I am extremely passionate about PAWS and the difference I believe we can make to everyone who needs our support. 

Read more about my qualifications here.

Nicola maxwell jacksons owner
Jan and biz


Hi, my name is Jan. I initially began my career as a paediatric nurse and then in paediatric cancer and palliative care. Through my experiences with these families, I began to notice and understand the importance of child mental health and wellbeing. This led me into pursuing a career in counselling where I developed a special interest and understanding of children and young people who are bereaved and siblings of children with special needs and life threatening illnesses. My rescue dog Biz will be accompanying me on my work. She loves people and is my constant shadow. (AKA Biscuit. We changed this soon after she first came to us: It caused issues calling it out on walks attracting other dogs as that was clearly their term for a treat!)

biz therapy dog
kyro in a canine therapy session

Leila (she/her) and KYRO

I have lots of experience working with people and more recently with animals too: I have taught primary school children in the past and I now work as a counsellor and a counselling tutor. 

With PAWS I have welcomed the opportunity to work therapeutically with young people and my dog! This has been in schools and also 1-1 walk and talks. I also run Mental Health First Aider courses. 

Kirsty elliot-walker

Kirsty Elliot-Walker (she/her) and Rudy

Hi I’m Kirsty! I’m a qualified counsellor with experience working with young people and adults. I’ve recently joined the PAWS team working therapeutically with an incredible dog! I support alongside young people in variety of settings, including residential homes and 1:1 walk and talks.  I have a great passion in well-being and anything dog related! I believe these both goes hand in hand to allow us to begin to heal, grow and achieve our potential. 

rudy the pug sat on a sofa
rosie and keya

Rosie Horler (she/her)and Keya

Hi I’m Rosie! I work with my loveable springer spaniel Keya. We work together with neurodivergent young people, visiting private clients as a mentor to support them with whatever needs or challenges they may be going through. Keya joined Rosie's family during lockdown after not passing her sniffer dog training for being too soft and affectionate and being rehomed. She now lives with Rosie's mum as her forever home and a life full of cuddles and affection. Keya and Rosie have a great connection and enjoy being wrapped up like burrito’s on the sofa or going sea swimming.

keya sat in bed

Hiya I’m Rob! I am a fully qualified and BACP registered counsellor. Teaming up with my boy Bailey - a 2 year old Labrador cross. Me and Bailey offer a calming and exciting environment for clients to explore their thoughts and feelings. 

Rob Millist (he/him)and Bailey

bailey with paws jacket on
rob with bailey

Carli Freeman (she/her)and Hollie

Carli freeman and hollie

Hello, I’m Carli and I have been a primary school teacher for over 20 years. 7 years ago, I began my training as a counsellor and hypnotherapist and shortly after I began a new roll in a primary school which enables me to work with pupils to support their wellbeing and help them develop their emotional literacy and social skills. In addition to this I run a small private counselling practice,working with both young people and adults. I am also very fortunate to live with Hollie, my black Labrador. I am now able to combine my experience and qualifications with my love of animals to work therapeutically with Hollie in a variety of settings to support young people.

Katrya Jantawong with cat on her shoulder

Katrya Jantawong (she/her)

Hiya! My name is Katrya and I am a sort of personal assistant for PAWS although, Nici tends to call me her ‘everything person’. I joined PAWS November 2021 and it has been the best thing I have ever done. Despite not owning any dogs or cats of my own (I do have a crested gecko and 2 large fish tanks), I have a great passion for animals and wish to work with them as my career progresses. 

You can find out more about my journey with PAWS here.

Katrya Jantawong

Megan Higgins (SHE/HER) and monty

Monty the dog

Hi I'm Megan! Monty joined me from a rescue when I was at university, he's had a rough past and we worked together to put it behind him. Monty is the sweetest and chilliest dog I know, he takes it all in his stride and loves being with people. I have worked with children in schools since I was 19, I have a particular interest in the autism spectrum and even ran a club for local children while at university. I try my hardest to relate to the young person I'm working with before all else because it's always easier to tackle things when the person helping gets it!

Megan and monty sat on a tree branch

Natasha Rougier (SHE/HER) and teddy

Natasha Rougier and teddy the dog

Hi, I’m Tasha and I work with my 4 year old golden retriever, Teddy, who I bred myself.  I am qualified up to Level 3 in Counselling skills and I also work as a Social prescriber. Teddy loves getting affection and having fun with humans, so going into schools or private homes to support young people is perfect for him.

Teddy the dog

alex anderson (she/her) and bramley

bramley sat on the chair

Hello, I’m Alex and I will be working with my gorgeous Bernedoodle, Bramley. As a qualified teacher with over 10 years’ experience, I have worked with children across all age groups in mainstream primary schools. I currently teach in alternative provision, where I provide academic and pastoral support to children up to the age of 13, who require help to access education. I have always been passionate about working with children and animals and feel extremely privileged to now be able to combine these two things and to be able to share my wonderful dog with young people. 

alex and bramley
Jackson a black labrador the therapy dog
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