Michaela has a Master’s degree in education sciences and a degree in psychotherapy. Her specialization was education in families and trust research in adventure therapy programs. She did a further training in experiential learning and adventure therapy for 1,5 years.
Michaela did an individual project abroad with one adolescent for five weeks last summer. She also attends a team in their teambuilding process.
She is currently working with youth and their families.
Has been working with children/youth with special needs since 1994 in diverse places (with families, juvenile offenders, youngsters). Since 2002 she has worked as a group leader and (co-) founder of experiential learning in the child and youth psychiatric ward. After several years of persistence the team there has created an eight week therapeutic program for youngsters (and their parents) to get to know and understand themselves better. Many therapeutic sessions are applied for this goal and experiential learning has been given a meaningful role in the program.
Tanja also teaches at the university college Leuven-Limburg (UCLL) of mental health care. Using experiential learning as a method, she trains students and future colleagues in group dynamics. In the postgraduate “experiential work with groups,” she takes part in the classes in which she teaches how the method is relevant and meaningful when working with youngsters with psychiatric disorders.Together with three other colleagues of child psychiatric departments, Tanja is creating a Belgian (Flemish) workgroup centralizing experiential learning and how the method is effective for youngsters with psychiatric disorders. Where many still think this is too risky or fragile for this target group, they know from experience that this can indeed be done. They explore options and possibilities to convince more people in order to get the (financial) resources to expand.
It is important to remain hopeful and to create opportunities and to work with Mother Nature, as she creates obstacles and beauties.
This is sometimes the mirror that people need to be challenged, to get more energy and to (re)discover themselves.