Dr Simone Raenker - Clinical Psychologist (PhD, DClinPsych)
I am an experienced Clinical Psychologist and Clinical Director of The Willow Tree Psychology Service (https://www.willowtreepsychology.co.uk). I am working with clients suffering from anxiety and depression, feeling sad or having low self-esteem using evidence-based and effective psychological treatments.
The ethos of my practice relates to the symbolism of the willow tree, which traditionally stands for healing, hope, safety, growth and stability. Its flexibility means that even a heavy storm is unlikely to break it because of its immense ability to bend. The willow tree therefore is a beautiful reminder for adjustment and adaptability in life, despite and alongside stormy periods and adverse experiences.
In my psychological practice, I aim to support my clients to not only survive but also thrive under difficult conditions. Whilst therapy can be both short- or long-term, my overall goal is always to provide a safe place to explore emotions and increase awareness, to foster resilience, and to allow for growth and change.
Psychological support is offered to a variety of problems such as anxiety disorders (health anxiety, OCD, panic disorder, social anxiety, PTSD, trauma, and generalised anxiety "constant worrying"), mood disorders (depression, stress, trauma, bipolar disorder, low self-esteem), eating disorders, addiction, self-harm and suicidal behaviour. Moreover, clients receive treatment for relationship problems, chronic health problems, pain, life transitions, bereavement and loss through other sources
I am an experienced clinical psychologist with over 15 years of research and clinical experience. My passion for psychology started early on in my adolescence. I feel incredibly grateful for being able to follow my vocation, which enriches my life immensely. This also drives my continuous efforts to enhance my therapeutic skills and engage in psychological training. I started my career in clinical research at the Institute of Psychiatry, Kings College London, where I worked as a research psychologist and completed a PhD. I went on to complete a doctorate in clinical psychology at Royal Holloway, University of London. I am now working in private practice and mental health services.
My work is influenced by attachment-based and trauma-informed clinical approaches to therapy. I am interested in therapies that enable emotional processing and recovery from painful and traumatic life experiences.
I am married to my British husband, who is the reason why I moved from Germany to the UK in 2008. We have 2 children and live in East Sussex.
I am registered and regulated by the Health & Care Professions Council (HPCP); registration ID PYL34497.
Training, qualifications & experience
I hold a MSc in Psychology (distinction) from The Free University, Berlin, Germany and a PhD in psychological medicine from The Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London, UK.
I have completed my Doctorate in Clinical Psychology at Royal Holloway, University of London, UK.
Since working as a clinical psychologist, I have completed psychological training in Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) and Emotion Focussed Therapy (EFT). I have recently completed a course in youth mindfulness in order to be able to teach mindfulness to young people.
I have extensive experience working with sufferes from eating disorders and their families / partner as this has been the focus of my clinical research at King's College London.
Apart from my privater practice in which I see young people, families, adolescents and adults, I am working in mental health services. This includes roles such as a
- Consultant clinical psychologist in residential therapeutic care for looked after children in Kent and London and
- Clinical Psychologist in Godden Green Cygnet Health Adolescent Inpatient Unit, Sevenoaks.
Registered / Accredited
Being registered/accredited with a professional body means an individual must have achieved a substantial level of training and experience approved by their member organisation.
Health and Care Professions Council
The HCPC are an independent, UK-wide health regulator. They set standards of professional training, performance and conduct for 16 professions.
They keep a register of health professionals who meet their standards, and they take action if registered health professionals fall below those standards. They were created by a piece of legislation called the Health Professions Order 2001.
Registration means that a health professional meets national standards for their professional training, performance and conduct.
Areas of counselling I deal with
There is a free 30 minute consultation for new clients.
I am working based on a sliding scale: The first initial sessions (1-12) are charged with a standard rate of £100 / 50 min. The costs for long-term therapy (session 13 onwards) are reduced to £75 per 50 minutes. Fees for EMDR sessions may be higher due to the extended length of the sessions.
I reserve pro bono places to make therapy available to anyone in need. Please contact me for further information.
I also offer neuropsychological assessments (i.e. ADHD). Please contact me for further information.
Concessions offered for
For patients in long-term therapy (12 sessions +) reduced rates apply.
I am offering reduced rates for therapy for anyone, who can explain that the full few would not be manageable.
I reserve one pro bono slot at any given time to someone in need.