Ilaria Calussi, MA (BACP Accredited) Founder
"we often feel shame over the very vulnerability that I believe is essential in determining a great therapist and places us at a level with those with whom we work"(Marie Adams, The Myth of the Untroubled Therapist)

 Ilaria's story

Ilaria arrived from Florence to London in 2000 to complete a Bsc degree in Psychology. Interested in human psychology and sensitive to the subtleties of others' emotions since a young age, Ilaria was always drawn to the helping professions. As a foreign student dealing with a range of anxieties, from re-location, exams, speaking a different language, wanting to belong and fit in, Ilaria discovered the powerful potential of Gestalt therapy, which helped her tremendously to overcome panic attacks and generally to develop self-awareness. This experience inspired Ilaria to pursue a career in counselling and psychotherapy by embarking on professional training at The Gestalt Centre in London, where she graduated with an MA in Gestalt Therapy Theory Studies and a Diploma in Counselling.

Clinical expertise
Since then Ilaria has continued to develop, expand and refine her clinical knowledge and expertise by undertaking additional training in a wide range of approaches and modalities, such as therapeutic play, creative therapy, attachment and addiction, motivational interviewing, therapeutic community therapy, child development, neurodevelopmental psychology and clinical supervision. Simultaneously Ilaria has worked in a range of community settings and for well-renowned organisations like Family Action, The Children Society and Mind. Between 2011 and 2020 Ilaria worked for Place2Be, one of the leading mental health charities supporting children's mental health. At Place2Be Ilaria took different roles, from managing a school-based mental health service, delivering a range of clinical training to clinical staff to leading on the MA Counselling Children in Schools (UEL validated). Now an Associate Lecturer for Open University within the School of Psychology and Counselling, Ilaria continues working as an independent therapist, supervisor and trainer.

Ilaria is expert in working non-verbally, facilitating healing of traumatic blockages that manifest through somatic symptoms. Other areas of expertise are attachment issues, developmental trauma, relational and family difficulties, stress management, depression, anxiety, alcohol and drugs misuse, diversity & identity issues (sexuality and gender), impact of marginalisation.

Work with families
Ilaria's interest in working with families and clients across the lifespan emerged while working at Family Action for the project Greenwich Building Bridges, which supported families affected by parental mental illness to develop their full potential whilst minimising the negative impact of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) on children. Ilaria's interest and passion for promoting positive mental health for disadvantaged and marginalised families and children continued to grow whilst she was also grappling with some of the challenges of parenthood: separation, single parenting, financial difficulties, gender and marital status' discrimination and life-work balance and stress. Ilaria's understanding of how the combination of life-stressors, social and economical inequality and developmental trauma contribute to mental health difficulties has been an inspiration to adopt a systemic and intersectional approach to therapeutic work: individuals can not be understood in isolation and can not be held solely accountable for different degrees of systemic oppression they experience. Ilaria believes that by supporting individuals with the community in mind, great change can be achieved.

A unique approach 
Ilaria's own experience, both personal and professional, has greatly contributed to developing an empathic and down to earth approach, combined with clinical robustness and leadership as a mental health expert. Regardless of background, supporting families and individuals to feel empowered whilst remaining connected with communities of their choice is at the heart of Ilaria's therapeutic approach.

Creative Therapy Space has been founded with these principles in mind, hence ongoing collaboration with like-minded therapists and professionals continuously informs our work. Scroll down to find out more about our collaborators


Our work is informed by a social collective of mental health professionals who have developed expertise in working with clients across the lifespan. Our mission is to promote mental health for all types of families across different communities

Dr. Raffaella Katzanis

Raffaella is a psychoanalytic psychotherapist and clinical supervisor, established in private practice since 2004. She is a full member of the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) and the Council for Psychoanalysis and Jungian Analysis. Areas of clinical expertise include: individual, couple and systemic therapy; depression, anxiety disorders, relationship difficulties, abuse, bereavement and trauma.

Kinship Hub

Kinship Hub is a community based service aimed at supporting kinship carers across London. Kinship Hub offers free online weekly webinars to kinship carers and children on a range of topics, from managing contact safely to promoting a positive sense of identity, life story work and building resilience.


Bringing wellness to corporates

GetZen Ltd specialise in providing a fresh perspective to mental health in the workplace. They are committed to becoming the most trusted wellbeing platform in the workplace. Where intuitive automation meets human experience to bring wellness initiatives to employers and employees alike.