Juniper Roots Therapy and Wellness

Juniper Roots Therapy and Wellness, in Guelph, is a place that primarily focuses on the treatment of eating disorders, distorted eating and body image issues. It is a place that supports the Health At Every Size (HAES) model, encouraging individuals to build a healthier and normalized relationship with food, weight and exercise.

It is a place for those who personally struggling, in addition to family and friends of someone who is struggling, to come and get support through seeing professionals with specific knowledge and training in this area. Therapists involved at Juniper Roots Therapy and Wellness may see cliental for other reasons as well.

It contains two smaller offices as well as a larger office conducive for groups and/or individual and family therapy. If you are a professional who works within the HAES model, have eating disorder experience (i.e.: dieticians, therapists, recreational therapists, art therapists, etc), and would like to have your private practice in Juniper Roots Therapy and Wellness, contact Karen McGratten here.

Our Therapists

Picture of Karen McGratten

Karen McGratten M.Div.

Karen McGratten is a psychotherapist, specializing in the treatment of eating disorders. Having personal and professional experience in this field, Karen brings an integrated and passionate perspective.

Educationally, Karen built a solid foundation by completing a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, earning a certificate in Palliative Care at the same time, through Lakehead University. She then went on to pursue a Masters of Divinity in Counselling through Heritage Seminary. As a dedicated individual in continuing education, she stays abreast by attending various workshops throughout the year (topics include but are not limited to: trauma, emotion-focused family therapy in eating disorders, athletes and eating disorders, horticultural therapy, etc).

Karen has also written a graphic novel, wiTHIN, that tells the story of recovery from an eating disorder. It is written with the intention to raise awareness around mental health issues with the hope of reducing stigma, as well as letting individuals and family members know, they are not alone. To read more about wiTHIN, click here.

An active member in the community, Karen sits on the Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Eating Disorder Coalition that puts on various events throughout the year. She also does various public speaking events, from high-schools to support groups, and so on.

Phone: (519) 341-6079 Email: Website:
Picture of Sasmantha Durfy

Samantha Durfy MA, MSW, RSW

Samantha is a registered Social Worker with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers and is also a member of the Ontario Association of Social Workers.  Samantha has been providing counselling to individuals, couples, families and groups since 2003.  She has a part-time private practice in Downtown Guelph where she specializes in working with teens and adults dealing with eating disorders, poor body image, low self-esteem, self-harming behaviours, and addictions, as well as helping families cope with separation and divorce.

Samantha completed her Master of Social Work degree at the University of Toronto (2003), a Master of Arts degree from the University of Waterloo (2001), and completed an undergraduate degree in Psychology and Sociology at Wilfrid Laurier University (1998). In addition to her private practice, Samantha also works part-time as a Social Worker in the inpatient Eating Disorders Program and as the Social Work Professional Discipline Leader at Homewood Health Centre in Guelph, Ontario.

Samantha’s passion for working with eating disorders began with her internship at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) in Toronto. Currently she is very active within the eating disorders community.  She is an energetic member of the Eating Disorders Advisory Council of Waterloo-Wellington and the Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Eating Disorders Coalition.  Samantha’s creative and resourceful therapeutic style has aided in making her a well-liked counsellor by her clients and their families. She has specialized training in Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT), and Emotion Focused Family Therapy (EFFT). Samantha is known for her whimsical approach and she enjoys staying well versed in pop culture.

Phone: (519) 993-9452 Email:
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Jocelyn Cowls MSc. OT. Reg.(ON).

Jocelyn Cowls is a Registered Occupational Therapist with a BA in Psychology and a Masters in Occupational Science. She is registered with the College of Occupational Therapists (COTO) as well as the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists (CAOT). She has worked in mental health for over 24 years with populations ranging from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) to mood disorders, eating disorders and addictions. For the past 14 years Jocelyn has worked at Homewood Health in one of the few inpatient programs in Canada treating people with PTSD.

Jocelyn has a part-time private practice located in downtown Guelph called focusing on assisting people with a successful return to work or school. Jocelyn works with individuals with the following scope of practice; assessing one’s readiness to return to work/school, teaching coping strategies specifically for work/school and facilitating a healthy return to work/school in collaboration with required stakeholders e.g. insurers, employers etc. Jocelyn also works with clients who are struggling with stressors from their occupational performance (work or school) and are looking for methods of coping differently to prevent further impact on their mental health.

Jocelyn has a great deal of experience working with first responders i.e. police officers, paramedics and firefighters.  She is aware of the culture of these workplaces and she is able to provide coping strategies applicable to this high risk field. She has a provider number with WSIB and therefore can work with clients currently on leave due to a workplace injury who are aiming to get back to work. Jocelyn also offers groups that focus on topics such as building resilience and returning to work successfully.

Jocelyn works in a client centred manner and is very passionate about her work.

Phone: (519) 546-2209 Email: Website:
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Angie Collie MSW, RSW

Angie is a registered Social Worker with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers and is also a member of the Ontario Association of Social Workers. She previously worked in a child and adolescent outpatient psychiatry program where she gained valuable experience in providing support to children, adolescents and young adults with mental health and emotional struggles. Currently she working at the University of Guelph providing counselling support to students. Angie is experienced in a variety of therapeutic modalities including CBT, DBT, and solution focused therapy.

Phone: (519) 766-2346 Email:
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Jenn Neufeld M.A., M.Ed., R.P.

Jenn Neufeld is a psychotherapist passionate about helping people work through difficult issues, and uses a collaborative, client-centred approach. Jenn has experience with a wide range of concerns, including: anxiety, depression, trauma and abuse, sexual abuse, LGBTQ2SA+ counselling, grief, anger, stress, addiction, self-harm, and relationship issues. She works with clients from diverse cultural backgrounds, identities and experiences, and has a particular interest in supporting LGBTQ2SA+ persons and survivors of trauma.

Jenn’s counselling work is grounded in feminist and anti-oppressive practices, and her approach is queer positive, sex and kink positive, harm-reduction focused and body positive. She has training in Brief Therapy, Narrative Therapy, Strengths-Based and Solution-Focused Counselling, Trauma-Informed approaches and Emotionally Focused Therapy.

For over 10 years, Jenn worked in the fields of student services and university admissions. Listening to and helping people inspired her desire to enter the counselling profession. Her education started with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Sociology. During her Master of Arts in Philosophy at ICS, Jenn explored feminist philosophical thought and approaches to contemporary social issues. In her Master of Education in Counselling and Psychotherapy from OISE, University of Toronto, she developed clinical counselling skills and completed an internship at a community counselling agency in Guelph.

Phone: (519) 489-0405 Email: Website:
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Michelle Johnson RD

Michelle Johnson is non-diet Registered Dietitian who has been working with clients who struggle with disordered eating or eating disorders for 4 years. She completed a Bachelor of Applied Science at the University of Guelph in the Applied Human Nutrition program. She graduated from Hamilton Health Sciences Dietetic Internship program and is registered with the College of Dietitians of Ontario. She has a passion for mental health and wellness.

Her interest in nutrition as well as body image and body diversity has provided volunteer opportunities in health promotion and mental health. Michelle works from a Health at Every Size model and takes a client-centered approach. She also works at the Canadian Mental Health Association where she is a Registered Dietitian in the outpatient eating disorder program with adolescents and adults. She is a member of the Waterloo-Wellington Eating Disorder Coalition and Dietitians of Canada.

Phone: (226) 706-8552 Email: Website:
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Leslie St. Jacques MSW, RSW

Leslie is a Registered Social Worker with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers and a member of the Ontario Association of Social Workers. Leslie graduated from the Master’s of Social Work program at Wilfrid Laurier University in 2004. Her experience includes providing psychotherapy in individual, family and group formats in mental health, out-patient and in-patient settings, and in private practice with children, youth and adults.

Areas of focus include managing anxiety and depression, including stress of health-related isssues and care-giver stress, developing awareness of one’s strengths, expanding interpersonal relationship skills and navigating major life transitions. The well-being of health care professionals and first responders of all disciplines, and their particular challenges caring for themselves and others is also a practice focus. Leslie has worked in peri-operative in-patient care as a Canadian Certified Physician Assistant since 2010. Although very separate from her work in medicine, her work as a psychotherapist is strengthened by an understanding of physiology, pain, and the emotional and psychosocial impact of illness and caregiving. Mindfulness, CBT/DBT, Interpersonal and Narrative approaches may be drawn upon. This is an affirming and positive LGBTQ2S practice and confidentiality, respect and compassion are core values.

Phone: (519) 823-2798
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Victoria Bonanno MSW, RSW

Victoria (Vicki) Bonanno is a Registered Social Worker with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers and a member of the Canadian Association of Social Workers. Vicki graduated from the Master of Social Work program at York University in October 2008. Since graduating, she has worked in the fields of mental health and dis/ability. She is proficient in American Sign Language (ASL) and is happy to serve clients in ASL. She has specialized in hearing loss, vision loss, chronic illness, ABI/concussion, grief and mental health. She provides individual, couple and family counselling to youth and adults.

Phone: (519) 760-8970 Email: Website:
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Sylvie Smith RP, ICADC, CDWF (Candidate)

Sylvie is a Registered Psychotherapist with the College of Registered Psychotherapist of Ontario, and an Internationally Certified Alcohol and Drug Counsellor (ICADC) with the Canadian Addiction Counsellors Certification Federation. Earlier this year, she began her certification to be a Certified Daring Way™ Facilitator (candidate), a methodology based on the work of Brené Brown.

For over twenty years, Sylvie has worked in various substance use, addiction and mental health agencies, both inpatient and outpatient, supporting adults, and youth. Most of her work has been supporting those who struggles with their use of substances, problematic gambling and technology overuse (such as video gaming, excessive use of various online sites and /or compulsive shopping). As part of this work, she has also supported loving family members establish a sense of wellness with a focus on taking care of themselves and learning how to support their loved ones in a healthy way. She also instructs a course, on campus, and on-line at Wilfrid Laurier University in the Addiction Certificate Program.

Email: Website:
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Jordana Sternberg MSW RSW

Jordana Sternberg, MSW RSW, is a registered social worker who has witnessed, time-and-time again, the incredible progress that occurs when people are motivated for change.

Having worked in the field of mental health since 2004, Jordana is skilled at facilitating individual, couple, family, and group therapy for those impacted by depression, anxiety, grief/loss, life transitions, relationship dynamics, stress, communication challenges, trauma, PTSD, and addictions.

Jordana is known for her compassionate client-centered approach to therapy. She prioritizes her clients' goals and regularly assesses their comfort and safety during sessions. Her guiding belief in the human capacity for growth empowers her to support her clients in making the healthy changes they desire.

Phone: (519) 222-0659 Email: Website:
Picture of Lisa Detwiler

Lisa Detwiler RP, OT Reg. (Ont.)

Lisa Detwiler is a Registered Psychotherapist and a Registered Occupational Therapist with over 21 years of experience working in mental health. She has advanced formal training in Psychotherapy Supervision, has Chaired the Ontario Society of Occupational therapists of Ontario ( OSOT) Psychotherapy committee for 3 years, and cofounder the OSOT Psychotherapy Supervision Subcommittee.

She has extensive training in group psychotherapy leadership, training in Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) Levels 1 and 2, as well as training in Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) and is a graduate of the Gestalt Institute of Toronto, the first psychotherapy institute to be approved by the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario.

Psychotherapy is Lisa’s passion and she has extensive experience working with adults with Depression, Anxiety, in addition to experience with PTSD, OCD as well as a wide range of mental health conditions.

Email: Website:
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Jessie Myhill (they/them) MA, MSW, RSW

Jessie Myhill is a Registered Social Worker with over 10 years clinical experience in individual, group, couple, and family therapy. Jessie enjoys working collaboratively with clients to increase resiliency and foster positive change. Working from a client-centered and strengths-based perspective, Jessie utilizes a variety of therapeutic modalities and works with many presenting issues such as anxiety, depression, grief/loss, relationship dynamics, eating disorders and life transitions.

Jessie has a special interest in working with the LGBTQ2IA+ community and welcomes the opportunity to do so. They specialize in trans and non-binary mental health, specifically in the areas of anxiety and eating disorders. Jessie is able to provide secondary support letters to trans and non-binary individuals seeking transition-related surgeries (TRS) as well as support them through the process if needed.

Jessie believes that the therapeutic relationship is key to transformative change. Their approach is rooted in anti-oppressive practice, principles of harm-reduction, and trauma-informed care.