Hi, I’m Dean.
Welcome and thank you for taking an interest in my blog. I hope you enjoy reading the articles I write on subjects that interest me and that reflect aspects of my life.
First, the legal part:
Please note that all of my written posts and all of my own photographs and images are actively protected by Copyright Law.
I’m in my mid forties. I’m a Freelance Writer and I am also a Counsellor, Psychotherapist and Clinical Supervisor.
I live and work in the beautiful English county of Suffolk. With symptoms starting in my twenties, if not before, I was diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease in June 2017 at age 45. I hope that, alongside other subjects I write about, my readers will also learn more about Parkinson’s Disease. I also hope to inspire others, who also live with a chronic degenerative disease, to simply keep on living life to the full and to maintain an optimistic attitude.
I moved to Suffolk from London in 2007, with my Partner and our dog; our much loved Fred who sadly since passed away. Funnily enough, it was only after moving to Suffolk, from London, that I started researching my family tree and found a long family line originating from here. It somehow feels like I have ‘come home’.
I was born and raised in west London but I am lucky to have had some experience of life abroad; living with my parents in Italy and South Africa for a time in my early childhood and, subsequently, travelling to many far flung parts of the world. Travel has enriched my life and my view of things.
My childhood was a mixed bag of wonderful fun times that were then shaken by the deaths of a number of close family members due to Leukaemia, Brain Hemorrhage and a number of Cancers. My father was a Stunt-Man, Stunt-Choreographer, Stunt Special Effects Choreographer and occasional Actor in the film and television industry. When I was 30 years old, I lost him to Cancer. Mine has also been a family in which some family members have lived with alcoholism. These very human experiences have influenced my career and my desire to support people through personal difficulty.
My Professional Life:
Career wise, I have a strong early background in the Private Sector and have been Supervisor and Team Manager within some of the UK’s top companies; roles that taught me a strong work ethic and self-discipline.
After my Father’s death, I joined the Charity Sector in 2002 and initially worked with those targeted by Domestic Violence and Hate Crimes. I became the Service Manager of a drug and alcohol counselling and treatment service between 2004 – 2007. As my career progressed, I became known for working with people with complex issues such as trauma, abuse, Veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and many social, health and mental health issues.
In 2007, having moved to Suffolk, I worked in the Chief Executive’s office at Suffolk County Council as a Commissioning Manager within Suffolk Drug and Alcohol Action Team (Suffolk DAAT). My role was to assess the needs of communities, design, commission and performance manage counselling and medical treatment services that were contracted to meet those needs. I also helped develop the county’s new Hate Crime support services.
Between 2009 – 2011, I became the Specialist Services Team Leader for NHS Suffolk. This role involved running two Nursing teams; the Shared Care Team and the Blood Borne Viruses Team, concurrently; delivering care, immunisation, detoxification, reduction programmes, counselling, blood testing (I trained in Phlebotomy), crisis intervention, trauma counselling and other services to clients with substance addictions; many of whom had co-morbidity and dual diagnosis.
I have become well known in Suffolk for my roles as Commissioner and as Specialist Services Team Leader and, while concurrently establishing my private counselling and psychotherapy practice here in 2008, I worked with a leading Suffolk based charity called Focus12; a residential rehabilitation centre for those with substance addictions and compulsive disorders, where I was commissioned as Clinical Supervisor between 2008 – 2013. In this role, I consistently supported Focus12 to successfully achieve and pass routine audits by the Care Quality Commission. In 2012, I was awarded for my work as Clinical Supervisor for my supervision of Student Interns for the military US Air Force base at Lakenheath in Suffolk.
Today, my psychotherapy practice has grown and I feel privileged to serve the community of Suffolk as well as the many clients I serve around the UK and around the world, via Skype. Skype is very effective as a means of reaching those with disabilities.
Writing is my passion and I am developing a number of written projects that I hope will be published in due course. For now, I make regular posts on my blog and enjoy sharing aspects of my life and my interests this way. I am incredibly grateful for the many wonderful comments of feedback that readers have given me here on this blog.
Do please participate by ‘liking’, ‘sharing’ or by leaving comments on any subject of interest that I write about and I am happy to receive ideas and suggestions for anything you might like me to write about.
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I hope you enjoy my Blog.