Kathi Cameron, BKin., MA, RCC
Allow me to introduce myself...
I was born and raised Victoria and have called the Comox Valley my home for over 14 years. I spent the first half of my career working in the health and fitness profession (but please don't hold that against me). I began my career working with the YM-YWCA of Greater Victoria; moving to the University of Victoria as the manager of fitness and health. From there I moved to the valley to take a position with the Department of National Defence where I served as a health promotion educator for 12 years teaching courses related to anger, suicide prevention, sexual harassment/assault prevention, addiction awareness, and nutritional / exercise psychology. I served as a sessional instructor for the University of Victoria and North Island College, conference presenter/facilitator, and have publications relating to exercise leadership and exercise/diet culture.
I feel extremely grateful and privileged to be able to do this work and pinch myself every day that I am able to sit with and support people from all walks of life as they work through their "stuff". I value the importance laughter, music, dance, exercise, and social connectivity (and the odd swear word when appropriate) has on healing and tend to avoid "counsellory" lingo like "let's unpack that", or "speaking from your heart space"....not that there's anything wrong with that.
I am a very strong anti-diet advocate and have spent the last 25 years studying and speaking on the evils of weight stigma, weight cycling, and the fact that health and fitness has nothing to do with the size of your body. I coach people on eating and moving intuitively and am happy and willing to conduct sessions in nature or while walking. Working along side kinesiologists and personal trainers, I am able to prescribe physical activity for the purpose of relieving symptoms related to depression, anxiety, trauma related issues, and the like.
Oh, and I have a pug named Pete, have a passion for pizza, and my favorite colour is purple.
My Education and Experience
My formal education/experience includes an undergraduate degree in kinesiology, a master's degree in exercise and sport psychology and a master's degree in clinical psychology (all from the University of Victoria). I worked as a kinesiologist in cardiac post-rehabilitation and general adult exercise leadership and moved in exercise psychology as I began working with people in larger bodies navigate exercise environments. I have served as an international speaker on fat-phobia and diet culture and continue to offer presentations on these and other health topics including eating disorder prevention and workplace sexual harassment prevention. I facilitate group meditation/relaxation and education for injured workers and extend this into individual sessions when appropriate.
As a therapist I am formally trained in Narrative Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR) Therapy, EMDR for Dissociative Disorders, and have completed the first of a two year training in Somatic / Attachment Therapy. I use movement in my practice and integrate relaxation response exercises in many of my sessions. I understand that we hold emotion in the body and apply techniques that can help manage, process, and reduce negative emotional experiences or triggers while promoting a sense of relaxation and calm. I am registered as a clinical counsellor with the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors (BCACC )and my registration number is 13179.
As an educator, I present topics relating to mental health and exercise prescription for the exercise professionals and clinical counsellors. I have worked as a presenter and facilitator for over 30 years in areas relating to leadership, health, nutritional/exercise psychology, and sexual harassment/assault prevention. I spent two years developing and facilitating a course for 19 Wing in Comox, BC related to the prevention of sexual harassment and assault within the ranks (which went national and continues to be taught today across all bases and wings within Canada).
In addition, I work with post-secondary students serving as an academic coach for those challenged with test anxiety, overwhelm, or need support with the academic writing process.
My Therapeutic Approach
I can't promise you a singing bowl or Himalayan salt lamp, but I can promise a welcoming approach and respect for where you are in your life. I provide a safe space free of judgement or agenda no matter what the issue(s). For me, a therapist can serve as a sounding board, a support, a healer, and a coach. We can be there for you at your worst or support you at your best. Therapy shouldn't feel awkward or be something you have to fit in to. Therapy comes in all shapes and sizes. It is important to feel comfortable and safe. That is why most of us offer a free 15 minute consultation so you can assess the fit before you make this important decision.
And as you are toying with the idea of booking your first appointment with a therapist remember this....
It's okay to fall apart sometimes. Tacos do it and we love them anyway.