Meet The Team

In Loving Memory of Shaun McCowie – Head of Counselling Wallsend
Shaun sadly passed away at the end of 2019. He provided counselling services to adults and children across the North East for over 16 years. Shaun was a volunteer who was passionate about improving mental health services across the North East. His dedication and determination will be carried on by the charity as we move on in our development. Shaun will be sadly missed by his colleagues and friends and hundreds of trainee counsellors he was a clinical supervisor and mentor for.
Gemma – Head of Counselling Meadow Well
Hi, my training was undertaken with Tyneside Metropolitan College where I gained a Higher National Diploma in Person-Centred Counselling and won top student, I did my placement with Anxious Minds and decided I wanted to stay because of the outstanding work this charity does for our community and how passionate they are about changing the way people are supported with mental health issues. I am currently based in Meadow Well with my team of 3 counsellors
Jan – Operations Manager
Jan has worked as a senior manager in lots of different jobs in the past. Jan trained at Tyneside Metropolitan College as a Person-Centred Counsellor, and has worked for other mental health charities before arriving here at Anxious Minds. Jan has been a counsellor for the last 15 years and has supervised counsellors for 8 years as well as delivering CPD Training in Mental Health, Abuse, and Bereavement. Jan is currently based in Blyth and manages 5 projects and 40+ counsellors
Fiona – Wallsend Drop-in Centre Manager
Hi, after having a previous career in Education, I re-trained with Sunderland University and I have been a Counsellor since 2008. I have worked in a number of community settings with young people and adults. I own a therapy dog and strongly believe in the power of animals to support and heal emotional distress. I am based at the Drop-In Centre.
Russell - Counsellor
Hi, my training was undertaken with Northumberland College where I studied to become a Person-Centred Counsellor, I have gained a vast amount of knowledge and experience working with young people and adults in the voluntary sector and various organisations and settings. I am based in Wallsend
Margaret – Head of Young Peoples Counselling Wallsend
Hi, my training was undertaken with Tyneside Metropolitan College where I studied to become a Person-Centred Counsellor and Clinical Supervisor. During the past 10 years, I have gained a vast amount of knowledge and experience working with young people and adults in the voluntary sector and various organisations and settings. I am based in Wallsend with my team of 10 Counsellors.
Kirsty – Admin and Support Worker
Kirsty holds a level 3 in counselling and a level 2 in drug and alcohol support she is passionate about supporting people with mental health, Kirsty also works in admin at our head office in Wallsend, and we would be lost without her, Kirsty is a valued member of our team.
Eddie – Chief Officer
Hi, I founded Anxious Minds in 2015 after leaving the Armed Forces after 22 years service on my war pension, due to a lack of early intervention and provisional support for mental health, stemming from my personal experiences with anxiety, depression and PTSD. This gives us both a detailed understanding of the reality of mental health and a passionate desire to improve the situation. Edward holds a level 7 in Leadership and Management, diploma in psychotherapy and Clinical Hypnotherapy and is a Master Practitioner in NLP and an expert by experience.
Miranda – Counsellor
I previously worked in Education and retrained to be a counsellor. In 2019, I did a diploma at Gosforth with Newcastle City Learning which I completed last year. I volunteered at Cruse bereavement for 2 years. Having completed my placement at Anxious Minds I was delighted to be offered a job and am really pleased to be part of this amazing charity.
Cheryl - Veteran Families Support Officer
Cheryl has worked for the past 5 years as a telephone support and families support worker. She is passionate about supporting veteran families. Cheryl and her husband served 22 years in the Armed Forces
Ashley - Head of Veteran Families Support
Ashley got a distinction on her counselling and masters course and is working towards her PHD., Ashley is passionate about supporting veterans and their families. She is lead counsellor for a team of 6 counsellors and also runs the drop-in groups for veterans
Claire - Management Team
Claire is a Qualified Solicitor specialising in domestic abuse, family and children. She has worked with children and adults throughout the North East for the last 15 years whilst practising as a solicitor and having founded a local music education charity. Claire joins the management team.
Denise - Management Team
Served 11 years in the armed forces as a Military Clerk. On leaving the Army she was employed as a Personal Assitant to various high profile individuals.
Parent Plus Project
Over 20 years, I have facilitated training in various establishments for Foster carers, Social Services, Parents, Teachers and other Therapists via conferences and training programmes. During that time I was a level 4 Foster Carer for 13 years, mainly fostering high risk children with severely challenging behaviour. I now run a successful private practice in Chorley, Lancashire, as well as running a support group that offers support, training and education to parents, teachers and carer’s.
Minnie is Our Dog Therapist
Minnie likes meeting and welcoming people to the centre, loves sitting on knees giving unconditional love; mini has worked as a Dog therapist for the last 4 years. She loves sausages and walks on the beach.

Our Patrons

Jamaal Lascelles
Jamaal Lascelles is an English professional footballer who plays as a centre-back for Premier League club Newcastle United, where he is captain. Jamaal is passionate about supporting North East mental health and became a Patriot of the charity in 2021
Denise Welch
Denise Welch is an English actress and television personality. She is dedicated to raising awareness of mental health and joined the charity is 2017
Ellen Dean
Writer of both fiction and non-fiction. Screenwriter. Radio Presenter. Patron of Albert Kennedy Trust and Anxious Minds UK. Ellen joined the charity in 2017