Gisella Danesi , Counsellor


  • Bachelor of Social Science - Southern Cross University (Majors: Counselling and Mediation; Human Relations and Communication; and Human Resource Development)
  • Certificate in Counselling - FDS (Family Drug Support)
  • Certificate IV in Workplace Assessment & Training
  • Senior First-Aid Certificate - QAS (Queensland Ambulance Service)
  • Diploma in Community & Human Services - Southbank Institute of TAFE
  • Associate Diploma in Applied Science—Alcohol and Other Drug Studies - Southbank Institute of TAFE
  • Friends at Court—Preliminary Training Program - Good Shepherd Centre
  • Values Consultant - Australian Values Institute (now the Minessence Group)
  • Accelerated Learning - Australian Leadership & Learning Centre
  • Volunteer Youth Worker - Youth Action

As a Youth Life-Skills Coach – I've assisted at-risk young people through:

  • Helping them identify their values (i.e. helping them to focus on what they really want from life).
  • Identifying the skills needed to live their values,
  • Helping them put together, and commit to, a personal action plan, and
  • Providing them with ongoing support.

In this role I have taken groups of young people through a personally challenging and intense program which begins in the wilderness of the Carnarvon Ranges in Central Qld, then  to semi-rural South East Qld for practical follow-up. Personal and vocational goals, are developed during the program. These personal and vocational goals provide the basis for ongoing support and encouragement of participants which is given for the ensuing twelve months through a mentoring service.

I have had more than 17 years’ involvement with the alcohol and other drug field, including the past 10 years as a volunteer counsellor with FDS (Family Drug Support). FDS is a caring, non-religious, non-judgmental organisation - primarily run by trained volunteers. FDS was established in 1997 for the purpose of supporting people in managing and dealing with complex drug related issues.

For the past 5+ years I have been working fulltime as a  counsellor for youmg people and parents.

I was accredited as a Values Consultant in 1993 and use the knowledge and skills gained from this program to help people identify what is really important in their life, thereby aiding them in their quest to live a meaningful, fulfilling life. I have found these skills particularly useful in working with troubled youth.

I am bi-lingual, being fluent both Italian and English. I was born in Australian, however, much of my early education was in Italy (Isle of Elba) where I lived for most of her teenage years. Apart from learning Italian, this experience gave me a good understanding of issues facing immigrants in a country where, initially, they don't speak the local language or understand local customs – this enables me to emphasise with, and to help, the many people who find themselves in this same situation in Australia


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10 December, 2023