Search type

Manchester Institute of Education

Nafeesa Nizami

Previous education and experience

Nafeesa Nizami

Integrated Creative Arts Therapist and Trainer; Mental Health, Young People, Groups, Couples and Bilingual Therapy (Urdu) - BACP Accredited Member, UKRCP Reg. Ind. Counsellor, Registered on Relate National Directory of Practitioners, Relate Qualified Status (Young People, Couples Therapy and Assessments), NOCN Qualified Trainer

In regards to myself as a practitioner I work from an integrative perspective.  I practice on the basis of utilising both creative and therapeutic techniques from all perspectives to meet my clients' needs.  Thus I recognise that although my practice is informed by theory, it is not dictated by it.  I feel it is the qualities we bring as individuals that create a therapeutic space, not the theoretical approach we use to express and justify our practice.  However, in this I am aware that as individuals we also bring our own set of prejudices, values, experiences, etc.  I feel that it is an awareness of ourselves that allows us to practice more ethically as practitioners and in-turn benefits our clients.  Thus my aim is to be not only a successful and effective, but also an ethical practitioner.

In addition, I have a keen interest in academics and research.  I often carry out research and regular clinical audits on all aspects of my clinical work, producing reports and case studies of the analysis for the use of both learning and funding.  I enjoy the logical, analytical and often philosophical nature of research, and enjoy theoretical discussion in relation to practice and context.  One of my many aspirations is to be actively involved in counselling/mental health or related research.

  • Centre for Child Mental Health and The Relate Institute: Counselling Young People, 2010-2011
  • OCN and The Relate Institute: Group Skills (Theory and Practice) for Trainers, 2010-2011
  • The Relate Institute: Working with Couples - Theory and Practice (Couples Counselling Conversion Course), 2009
  • The University of Manchester: MSc in Mental Health Practice, 2007-2008
  • The University of Huddersfield: BSc (Hons) in Counselling, 2004-2007

Thesis title

Pre-trial therapy for survivors of sexual abuse: a socio-political, legal and therapeutic inquiry through critical discourse analysis


Research details

I have been very struck by media and political interest in sexual abuse.  In particular, headlines around young victims of sexual abuse and the re-traumatising effects of 'systems.' I am attracted by the ideas of both creative reflexive discourse of self-inquiry and social-inquiry (emphasising the role of social/political interaction, resolving social issues by legal reasoning and academic inquiry.  I am currently exploring ideas around young people's therapy for victims of sexual abuse/grooming from urbanised/ghettoised areas and the impact of the justice system and political policies, with an interest in critical discourse analysis of this topic.

The aim of the research is to examine the relationship between the law, therapy and survivors of sexual abuse within the context of pre-trial therapy with survivors as witnesses in criminal trial proceedings through a critical discourse analysis, in addition to taking into account the socio-political climate in which it exists.

The research centres around the following key Crown Prosecution Service practice guidelines:

  • Provision of therapy for child witnesses prior to a criminal trial (2001)
  • Provision of therapy for vulnerable or intimidated adult witnesses prior to a criminal trial (2001)
  • Interim guidelines on prosecuting cases of child sexual abuse (2013)

In addition, documenting and critically analysing some of the experiences of survivors of sexual abuse as witnesses in criminal trial proceedings and professionals within the context of pre-trial therapy with survivors, through structured interviews.

Research interests

  • Therapy
  • Mental health
  • Art therapy
  • Equality and diversity
  • Integrative therapy
  • Social justice
  • Young people
  • Child advocacy
  • Cultural awareness
  • Music therapy
  • Child abuse prevention
  • Sexual abuse
  • Couples counselling
  • Ethics
  • Political philosophy
  • Discourse analysis
  • Pre-trial therapy

Contact details