Andrew Whitehead

Combining my training in counselling with various life experiences is what led me to becoming involved with David and the Heavy M.E.T.A.L.  program. Growing up as men we have generational approaches, behaviours, teachings and expectations instilled within us. Society, media and our own personal experiences reinforce who we become, not all of which are positive or healthy for ours and others’ wellbeing. We as men are responsible for how we apply these absorbed facets of our character when our life path and those around us are impacted by the affect we have on them.

Reflecting on humanity as a whole and the state of the world, we men as half of the population are responsible for some incredible achievements but at the same time, we are also responsible for some outcomes that have had hugely detrimental outcomes and resulted in mass destruction.

In my life, I have witnessed, been impacted by and participated in abusive behaviour, substance abuse, abuse of perceived privilege, denial of truth and the impact of one’s actions and the emotional damage wrought by these behaviours. If we really care for those around us, it’s past time to make a difference by changing those negative behaviours.

I feel very privileged to be part of Heavy M.E.T.A.L. Group and to be able to offer my services as a co-facilitator of the amazing program that David has created. I am a qualified counsellor who is registered with the Australian Counselling Association, a Graduate member of the Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors and I am continually studying in the associated fields of counselling and therapies. I have experience in Family Law and I am also a member of the Mental Health Academy.

I believe I have something to offer, to contribute and to help. I have witnessed the amazing changes in men, the blossoming of the good man that presides inside. If you have recognised that change is necessary then there’s positive no better place to do it.

Kelly Murphy

Kelly Murphy, from the Australian Centre of Trauma and Wellness, supports the partners of our program participants as a third party contact. This ensures that the men’s partners are being supported with kindness and confidentiality. Kelly links these women and their families with appropriate services, ensures their safety and supports these families in their adjustment to the changes in the family dynamics due to the participant’s healing and growth journey with the Heavy M.E.T.A.L. program.

Kelly is registered with the Australian Counselling Association. She has ten years’ experience of working with people who have experienced trauma and adversity. As a therapist and someone with lived experience, Kelly has seen many gaps in the service industry. These gaps can make things much harder for people who are already facing challenges. As someone who has also faced her own difficulties, she appreciates the importance of having a caring person standing beside you, offering support in helping you to overcome the difficulties and becoming the best you can be. Kelly’s approach is underpinned with client focussed, evidence based and trauma informed practices. One of Kelly’s many wonderful attributes is her ability to work at the client’s pace, while still creating growth and a space for healing.

In partnering with the Heavy M.E.T.A.L program, Kelly’s focus has been to offer practical support to families by helping them plan for their safety, to reduce the ongoing impacts of family violence and to heal from the traumatic experiences they’ve had in the home.

Kelly offers individual counselling sessions for the partners or family members via phone, video link or face to face from her office in Pakenham.

Brett Dunne

The program helped me and my family immensely as I was able to understand the impact that my behaviour and attitude had on my family. 

After completing each level of the program, I continued attending phase two just to keep my learning and understanding up.

After attending the program for three years David asked me to become a peer educator. For the last twelve years I have been a co-facilitator and peer educator in the program. I have found the work to be incredibly rewarding. It’s a privilege to be able to encourage and support other men who have struggled with letting go of the behaviours and attitudes the same way I did when I began. Seeing men break away from the cycle of violence and hearing the positive feedback from their partners and children confirms that this work has a positive ripple effect on our community.

I believe in the work that we do and I believe that men can change. It takes a lot of honesty and a lot of hard work to change attitudes and behaviours but it can be done!

Judith Szucs

I feel joyful and energised when I can liberate others from the limitations of their current perspective. These limiting perspectives can cause other symptoms, both medical and psychological. Freeing people of these and removing unhelpful body memories can lead to empowerment and increased self-awareness.

I am a qualified counsellor, registered Level 4 membership with Australian Counselling Association. I am also a member of the College of Clinical Supervisors. 

I provide an interagency service for the women and children whose partner has engaged in the Heavy M.E.T.A.L program with the goal to empower women to improve the quality of their lives and fulfill their potential.

Raising five children using alternative natural medicines and working within the disability field for many years has provided me with a wide range of experiences and a unique philosophy of life.

My passion is facilitating transformation through supporting and coaching clients in discovering the core issues that are creating their pain. I also work to help my clients uncover any addictions they may be fostering, whether emotionally or physically, as well as any other reasons that may leave them feeling unwell.

I use empathy, compassion and good humour to help clients address challenges that may be confronting and help them to become free of these challenges. I love helping them to reach their potential and purpose and to achieve an overall sense of wellbeing.

My centred healing approach counteracts stress, anxiety, depression and aches and pains. This method releases endorphins which offers relief using natural mood-altering hormones, creating a sense of nurturing and self-acceptance.

My intentions in therapy are to facilitate healing through the release of negative emotions and to enhance self-esteem, confidence and self-acceptance by raising a client’s self-awareness. Achieving harmony between behaviour and emotions is the desired result as this gives my clients a solid foundation to work from in order to reach their goals.

Tanya Giles-Watson

Tanya participated in a women’s domestic violence program back in 2002. She went on to design, develop and facilitate many programs, forums and workshops aimed at supporting and advocating for women and children to say no to family violence. Tanya has facilitated family violence workshops for health professionals, police officers and general practitioners.

She is dedicated to helping men, women and children find a better way of dealing with challenges that arise and increase their chances of having positive and healthy relationships.

Tanya joined Heavy M.E.T.A.L. in 2006 as a facilitator in the men’s, women’s and couples programs and enjoys seeing the changes people have made in their lives through hard work and dedication.

Her qualifications include a Certificate IV Introduction to Domestic Violence and Certificate IV in Trainer & Train Small Groups. Tanya is currently undertaking a Bachelor of Applied Social Science (Counselling). As a result of her work with Heavy M.E.T.A.L., she has realised how critical it is to support young people in making positive choices earlier in their lives. She is passionate about working in the youth justice system.