About

J.M.Kirby
Sandplay Counselling and Education
ABN: 50 594 484 905

Qualifications

  • Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood)
  • Post Graduate Diploma in Education
  • Diploma of Teaching (Early Childhood)
  • Cert. Sandplay Therapy & Symbol Work
  • Cert. Expressive Therapies with children, adolescents & adults
  • Cert. IV Workplace Training & Assessment
  • National & Victorian “National Excelling in Teaching Award” (NEiTA) “For excellence in preschool services in isolated communities” 2004.
  • Present study: Diploma of Professional Counselling at the Australian Institute of Professional Counselling.

Sandplay Therapy

Values and ethical standards

As a member of the teaching fraternity and a Sandplay Counsellor I adhere to their Codes of Practice. My values include confidentiality, respect for the individual and in collaboration with my clients, children and families I aim to help them achieve the best outcomes possible. As a therapist I continue to pursue my personal and professional growth and development.

Biography

of Juineta (Neta) M Kirby

As a Sandplay Therapist I am in private practice in the rural town of Tatura and with Goulburn Valley Centre Against Sexual Assault in Shepparton.

I was educated in Victoria, Australia at primary and secondary public schools. I trained at the Institute of Early Childhood Education in Melbourne gaining a Diploma of Teaching in 1973. I later studied by distance education gaining my Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood) and my Post Graduate Diploma in Education. Presently I am studying for a Diploma of Professional Counselling to gain more knowledge in the areas of trauma, grief and loss. 

I have always been interested in developing or being a part of new ventures. I set up a brand new kindergarten in Shepparton, and established a mothers group there after seeing a desperate need for such a gathering. Later with four children of my own, I helped establish a Rudolph Steiner Kindergarten in Mooroopna where I also taught for a short time. After being a part of the steering committee for a Mooroopna child care centre I eventually became the Co-ordinator. 

After three years, I became a lecturer within the Koorie Unit of Melbourne University and there began a wonderful relationship with local indigenous people. Being an ‘Aunty’ is an honour I cherish. Teaching young Koorie children for several years has given me a new perspective on working with children from different cultural backgrounds.

As an outreach teacher for the last 20 years I have met many people in rural communities and they have been very supportive of my teaching style. I have never swerved away from a challenge and continue to thrive on things new to me.

Throughout my life I have held many fascinating and often challenging positions and have been a mentor to many parents, colleagues, student teachers and new arrivals to Australia.

People see me as an extrovert and a person who can juggle an amazing number of responsibilities or projects simultaneously. As a mother, grandmother, sister, friend, colleague, early childhood consultant, tertiary lecturer, outreach kindergarten teacher and sandplay counsellor (running my own practice), volunteer tutor, historical society member and Rotarian (holding Club and District positions) I manage to keep busy.

Over the years as an early childhood educator and union councillor, I have appeared on television, radio and in the print media discussing a variety of topics.

One highlight of my career as a teacher was when a committee of parents nominated me for the prestigious ‘The National Excellence in Teaching Award’ (NEiTA). As a keen advocate for early childhood and the rights of children I accepted the challenge to meet the required criteria and was fortunate to gain a Victorian award, and later the coveted National award. With the NEiTA Study Grant I travelled to Italy and gained first hand knowledge of the wonderful Reggio Emilia style of teaching.

I still enjoy working in the early childhood field as a kindergarten teacher, but several years ago I felt that I needed to do more for the families at my kindergartens who were being affected by the drought and so decided to return to study. After studying Sandplay Therapy in Australia, Switzerland and South Africa I now have a successful counselling practice.

In early 2012 I took another exciting step on my counselling journey, when I joined the “Shepparton Child Health Group” as part of their team specialising in the care of young children.  

I know and appreciate people, believe strongly in social justice, indigenous affairs and the environment. I also believe in my dreams and see myself as a helper and enabler.

All these experiences, and others too numerous to mention here, have helped to mould who I am.

Most importantly, I am proud to be the parent to four wonderful children and Nan to four delightful grandchildren.