Our Mission

The Children’s Institute is located in the Oakland area. We provide therapy services to children and specialize in psychotherapy, child therapy, teen therapy, family therapy, co-parenting therapy, and reunification therapy.  Overall in our work, we strive to alleviate psychological suffering and challenges faced by children and families in our community. We seek to promote a strong sense of self and personal growth all while reducing anxiety and discomfort. Increasing our clients’ sense of meaning, purpose in life, and relieving them of any burdens is our priority. 


We welcome and embrace all clients from different cultures, families, values, and beliefs. All of our therapists honor and respect the unique characteristics in all of our clients. Therapy treatment initially begins with identifying and understanding the client’s challenges and goals in order to determine a customized therapy plan. Our therapists all have a unique approach to therapy and counseling, however, they all share a common goal of providing quality, effective, and empathetic treatment that answers to all established goals and challenges. We nurture and support all of our clients and their families by having all of our therapists’ actions are rooted in research based interventions. 


In summary, at The Children’s Institute we strive to promote the growth of each client and we hope that each individual is able to tackle any challenges they may be facing.

Meet Our Team

Amy Kelly, LMFT


Amy Kelly is a licensed Marriage & Family Therapist specializing in Child, Adolescent, & Reunification therapy.


Amy has spent the past decade working with children & families. She focuses on individual therapy for children & teenagers, family therapy, co-parenting therapy, & reunification therapy. 

Amy completed her Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology at San Francisco State, Bachelor’s degree in Psychology at the University of California at Davis & CE with the American Academy of Pediatrics 

Natasa Nordman, LMFT


Natasa Nordman is a licensed Marriage & Family Therapist specializing in depression, anxiety, adolescent therapy & EMDR.


She is focused on working with individuals who experience anxiety, depression, trauma, & phase of life difficulties. 

Natasa holds a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology from University of San Francisco & a Bachelor’s degree in Human Development from the University of California at Davis. She is also trained & highly skilled in evidenced-based practices such as EMDR & CBT.

Morgan White, AMFT

Morgan White is a Registered Associate Marriage and Family Therapist who specializes in working with children and teens. 

She studied History and Political Science at the University of Arizona, graduating as a Dean’s List Scholar. She went on to earn her Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology, with a concentration in Marriage and Family Therapy from Dominican University of California in San Rafael.

Morgan treats youths with a wide variety of issues, including anxiety, depression, school based stressors, grief/loss, and trauma.”

Ryan Gogarty, LMFT

Ryan Gogarty has experience in treating children, teens and adults who are experiencing depression, anxiety, family and relationship issues.


Ryan received his Bachelor’s of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Arizona & Master's degree in Marriage & Family Therapy from Saint Mary’s College of California. Ryan is a LMFT (license number: 126085) 

Hayley, LMFT

Hayley works with adults and adolescents who have experienced substance use disorders, depression, anxiety, grief, and trauma. 


Hayley has formal training in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), mindfulness techniques, crisis management, solution-focused therapy, and is a certified Motivational Interviewing (MI) counselor.  


Hayley received my B.A degree from Northern Arizona University in Anthropology and my M.A degree from the Wright Institute of Berkeley, Ca in Counseling Psychology.

Bonnie Burset, AMFT

Bonnie Burset is an Associate Marriage and Family Therapist. 


Bonnie has a bachelors and masters degree in East Asian Studies. Bonnie graduated from the John F. Kennedy University with a master’s degree in Counseling Psychology, specializing in Marriage and Family Therapy in 2016.


Bonnie works primarily with teens, adult individuals and couples on a wide range of issues from depression, anxiety and relational distress to complex trauma, self-harm, compulsion and addiction.

Micaela, AWCS

Micaela works with adolescents and adults who feel depressed, anxious, overwhelmed, stuck, or numb and want to heal from past trauma, live more authentically, and develop more meaningful and satisfying relationships.


Micah’s training is grounded in trauma-informed, psychodynamic, and relational therapy and she draws upon somatic and cognitive-behavioral techniques. 


She Micah received her B.A. from Pitzer College and an M.S.W from UC Berkeley. 

Priscilla Aguirre, LMFT

Priscilla Aguirre understands the importance of welcoming the whole & authentic self into the therapeutic setting. 

Priscilla will support you in working towards secure attachment to allow space for reconnection and stability in relationships with loved ones.

Her special interests include but are not limited to trauma and PTSD, intersectionality and diversity, anxiety, depression, relationships and spirituality. Therapeutic modalities that may be used in therapy are traditional talk therapy, expressive arts, somatic therapies, play therapy, and mindfulness. 

Marissa Wales, AMFT

Marissa Wales is an Associate Marriage and Family Therapist.


Marissa supports individuals, couples and families to strengthen relationships, work through the impacts of trauma and find meaning, authenticity and fulfillment in life.

Marissa completed her masters degree in clinical psychology from San Francisco State University. Her training is from a psychodynamic and relational approach which includes exploration of underlying patterns, emotions and beliefs.

Catherine MacGillivray, AMFT

Catherine MacGillivray is an Associate Marriage & Family Therapist. She is a psychodynamic psychotherapist working primarily with children, adolescents, parents, and couples. 


Catherine has a PhD in French Literature from University of California, Berkeley, and my MA in Clinical Psychology is from Antioch University in Santa Barbara. 


Catherine specializes in working with high-achieving young people, who may be experiencing stress or distress around their goals and ambitions; LGBTQ youth and their parents; blended and transracial families; and couples of all kinds. 

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