(587) 362-5101 118 3rd avenue Cochrane AB T4C 1X8

Therapy West Cochrane

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Helping you build structure, stability, and a sense of well-being.

Our experienced professionals at Therapy West are highly trained in counselling, assessment and evidence- based treatments.

Through our in-person and online video sessions, we work collaboratively to help our clients thrive.

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Meet Your Therapy West Cochrane Team

Registered Psychologists Erica Ford, Tina Virjee, Jayla Schmidt and Michelle Kachur.

Therapy West Cochrane Erica Ford

Erica Ford

Registered Psychologist

I have wanted to work in mental health since I can remember. I have an undergraduate degree in Criminology and Psychology from the University of Ottawa, a diploma in Addictions from McMaster University and my master’s in Counselling Psychology from Yorkville University. I made the move from Ottawa to Calgary in 2014 where I decided to take the steps necessary to become a psychologist.

I’ve worked in the field since 2009, starting out in a shelter setting working with chronically homeless, mentally unwell, and addicted populations. For many years I worked as an addictions counsellor in intake and assessment at a detox facility in Ottawa. I also have years of experience working with troubled youth in a closed-custody detention centre. Since moving to Alberta, I’ve had the unique experience of working with street entrenched, marginalized populations, both adult and youth.

Counselling is a collaborate approach and having a strong therapeutic relationship is the key to success. I work with individuals and couples who may be struggling with an array of different issues. I utilize a client centered, non-judgmental approach to build relationships with my clients. Through the use of many different therapeutic frameworks I find what works best for the specific needs of my client. Frameworks include cognitive behavioural therapy, solution focused therapy, client centered therapy, and dialectical behavioural therapy.

I moved to Cochrane with my husband in 2016. We have a dog and two cats. We are both active and enjoy spending our free time in the mountains. We intend to make Cochrane our forever home.

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Therapy West Cochrane Jayla Schmidt

Jayla Schmidt

Registered Psychologist

Jayla is a Registered Psychologist with a background in both psychology and education. She is a member of the College of Alberta Psychologists and Psychologists’ Association of Alberta. Jayla works with children, adolescents, and adults providing psychological assessment, counselling, and consultation. She is an approved provider for Indigenous Services.

Jayla has extensive training and experience in the assessment, diagnosis, and intervention of a wide range of developmental disorders such as Autism Spectrum Disorder, learning disorders, intellectual ability, and mood and anxiety disorders. Jayla is able to provide thorough and detailed assessments for children, youth, and adults in order to explore learning disabilities, attention difficulties, social-emotional challenges, and giftedness. Psychoeducational assessments can help describe and understand an individual’s cognitive, academic, behavioural, and/or social emotional functioning. Through strength-based assessment, Jayla can pinpoint the challenges that are impairing success at school for children and youth and provide clarity to questions about why an adult may be struggling at work or in their everyday life.

Additionally, she provides counselling services to individuals, couples, and families who may be struggling with depression, anxiety, parenting, relationships, motivation, or life transitions. Jayla takes a holistic, non-judgmental, and strengths-based approach to understanding her clients’ personal experiences and life circumstances. Jayla believes that it is important to draw on evidence-based strategies that best suit the needs of the client. This allows her to integrate techniques and approaches from a wide variety of therapeutic modalities and orientations including cognitive behavioural therapy, solution focused therapy, and positive psychology. She supports growth through collaboration with her clients in order to create practical, specific, and meaningful goals of change.

Jayla lives in Cochrane with her husband and children along with a number of rescue dogs and cats. Outside of her practice, she enjoys art, music, politics, and spending time outdoors.

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Therapy West Cochrane Tina Virjee

Tina Virjee

Registered Psychologist

Whether facing challenges or striving for personal growth, seeking support is a sign of strength. Tina views the counselling process as a collaboration between client and therapist to construct an achievable path to meet individualized needs. The importance of recognizing and utilizing personal strengths to achieve goals is a key to success. Over the past 20 years, Tina has gained experience working with adolescents and their families in Corrections and in area high schools. As a therapist, she helps individuals and families identify challenges, foster healthy communication, promote understanding, and strengthen relationship bonds.

Tina works with adolescents and adults in individual, couple, and family sessions, and can help with a wide range of issues including depression, anxiety, self-esteem, trauma, interpersonal relationships, communication, addictions, ADHD, and emotional regulation. She is a Registered NIHB provider with personal and professional experience in Indigenous communities.

Tina is dedicated to supporting people on a transformative path towards unlocking their full potential. Tailoring evidence-based approaches to unique needs, she provides a safe space for self-discovery and growth. Together, Tina and her clients identify challenges and build skills to reach goals.

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Therapy West Cochrane Jayla Schmidt

Michelle Kachur

MACP; Registered Provisional Psychologist

Michelle is a Provisional Psychologist with a background in counselling psychology. Michelle has extensive personal and professional experience in childhood neurodevelopmental and genetic disorders. Her area of specialization is children, adolescents, and adults. She is a member of the College of Alberta Psychologists and Psychologists’ Association of Alberta.

Having worked in a school-based setting for 8 years, Michelle strives to support families struggling with their child’s behaviour, implementing strength-based approaches to work through: academic concerns, ADHD, autism spectrum disorder, mood disorders, disruptive mood dysregulation, oppositional defiance disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, attachment issues, bullying, grief and loss, trauma, sleep issues, and maladaptive thinking. Further to this, Michelle offers parental support in the form of strategy-building, life transitions, and emotional support centered around maintaining, growing, and restoring harmony in the home.

Michelle integrates methodologies centred on affirmative rapport building and unconditional positive regard, empowering her clients’ sense of self-worth and self-advocacy. Her therapeutic framework incorporates strategies and techniques including cognitive behavioural therapy, play therapy, trauma-focused CBT/trauma-informed practices, mindfulness-based CBT, and narrative therapy. Michelle further supports youth in strengthening their social competencies through social skills building, improving emotional identification/expression, collaboration, peer relationships, and conflict resolution.

Michelle resides in Cochrane with her husband, four daughters, and beloved family pets. In her spare time, Michelle enjoys painting, reading, gardening, and time out on the lake.

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Dedicated therapists, committed to advancing your well-being on all levels.

We have experience working with a wide range of concerns that include depression, anxiety, trauma, PTSD, borderline personality disorder, eating disorders, emotion regulation, self- esteem/confidence issues, anger, work stress, bipolar, problems with communication, problems with sexual intimacy, relationship stress, and other mental health concerns.

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