Meet the Team

Simone Vella (Director/Head Therapist)

Simone is a passionate therapist who loves working with children. She graduated with a Bachelor of Applied Science (Occupational Therapy) from the University of Western Sydney. She followed her passion into paediatric occupational therapy after gaining years of experience working with children of varying abilities. Simone enjoys working collaboratively with teachers and parents in order to ensure that children reach their goals, and takes a child-centred approach to therapy. Simone loves to use each child’s unique interests to build a fun therapy environment. She is actively involved in educating teachers and schools on autism spectrum disorders. She is registered with Medicare Australia and is a member of the NSW branch of OT Australia. She has also completed training in DIR Floortime, Sensory Processing, Maketon Signing, and Auditory Processing Therapy.

Corina Hummelstad (Paediatric Occupational Therapist)

Corina is a compassionate and motivated Occupational Therapist, driven to support children and families to reach their potential in fun and creative ways. Corina graduated from Australian Catholic University and has experience providing therapy for children within a Private hospital setting and out in the community. Corina has a strong passion for creating engaging and meaningful interventions and solutions for children and their families. She is passionate about empowering children and their families to achieve their therapy goals. Corina is committed to professional development and is an active member of Occupational Therapy Australia. Corina is certified in assessment and intervention for children and DIR®Floortime approach. She is passionate about participating in ongoing professional development to further build her skills and knowledge to stay up-to-date with the most evidence-based practice. Corina has an interest in working with children who have sensory processing difficulties, Autism Spectrum Disorder, developmental delays and handwriting difficulties.

Stephanie Collins (Paediatric Occupational Therapist)

Stephanie is a registered occupational therapist who graduated from the University of Sydney with a Bachelor of Applied Science (Occupational therapy) with a background in Psychology. She is passionate about working with children using a child-centred, strengths-focused approach to help children climb up the developmental ladder and move towards maximising their unique potentials and achieving their goals. She has experience working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, sensory processing difficulties, Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), and developmental delays in fine motor skills, gross motor skills and difficulties in handwriting.


Stephanie believes in approaching therapy from a bottom-up approach; to meet the child at their level to build on the required foundational skills and working upwards in order to build on their life skills, academics and independence in day to day life. She understands that every child and family is unique and so would tailor her sessions to what is most suited to the child. Stephanie is continuously working on increasing her professional development by attending workshops and webinars as an active member of Occupational Therapy Australia, in order to ensure that she is up to date with current research for evidence-based practice.


In her spare time, Stephanie enjoys reading, going to the gym, doing digital art and teaching her dog, Max, new tricks.

Nadine Salama (Paediatric Occupational Therapist)

Nadine is a registered occupational therapist who graduated from University of Western Sydney with a Bachelor of Occupational Therapy.


Nadine has experience working with children with hyperlexia, learning difficulties, sensory processing difficulties, Autism Spectrum Disorder, and other developmental delays; in developing fine motor skills, gross motor skills, and social skills. Nadine enjoys finding fun and creative ways to build rapport and engage with children to provide interventions that support children in achieving their full potential. 


Nadine has completed training and is certified in DIR® Floortime. She is committed to providing interventions that are up to date with current research and evidence-based practice, and is continuously seeking out professional development opportunities.Nadine is passionate about providing culturally competent care to children and their families, and is able to communicate in both English and Arabic. 


In her spare time, Nadine enjoys spending time with her family, baking, drawing and photography.

Danielle De Biasi (Paediatric Occupational Therapist)

Danielle is a passionate and enthusiastic Occupational Therapist. She graduated from Western Sydney University with a Bachelor in Occupational Therapy with a background in Health Sport and Exercise Science. She also has had extensive experience in supporting children and adolescents with varying abilities in their daily lives. 

 

She is trained in DIR®Floortime and ABA Therapy (Applied Behavioural Analysis). She is passionate about the delivery of best practice and therefore is committed in expanding her knowledge and skills by continuing her professional development as an Occupational Therapist. 

 

Danielle is dedicated in supporting children and their families achieve their goals. She finds it extremely fulfilling working with children and their families using a strength-focused approach, empowering children to participate in and strive to reach their unique potential and their families with the knowledge to best support their child to achieve things they have always dreamt of, yet never thought were possible.

Tamara Parnell (Paediatric Occupational Therapist)

Tamara graduated from the University of Sydney in 2009 and, with a passion for working with children,  began her occupational therapy career working at ADHC (Aging, Disability, and Home Care). While raising her 2 beautiful children, Tamara has since worked part time for NSW Health in the Child and Family Health department. 


Tamara has completed training in DIR floortime, and Learn to Play, amongst others and continues to develop her knowledge of sensory integration. Between work and raising children, Tamara enjoys playing the cello, doing home renos and playing with her new puppy.

 

 

Carmen Nissan (Paediatric Occupational Therapist)

Carmen is a passionate and devoted occupational therapist, who graduated from Western Sydney University. She strives to do the best by her clients and family by working collaboratively with parents and caregivers. Carmen has completed training and is certified in DIR® Floortime. With a background working in disability with mostly children and adolescents, she has developed a wide range of transferable skills applicable to all clients, while understanding every child is unique and ensures their strengths, skills and interests are incorporated throughout her sessions. Carmen is committed to continuing professional development, in order to ensure best practice for all.

Lara Boniotti (Paediatric Occupational Therapist)

Lara is from Sao Paulo, Brazil and this is where her love for in Paediatric OT started. She studied at one of South America’s Prominent Universities – University of Sao Paulo, where she graduated with a Bachelor’s in Occupational Therapy. She moved to Sydney in 2016 in hopes to further pursue her passion in this career. Prior to Leaps and Bounds, Lara had worked in the Childcare industry where she was able to provide quality care as well as help children with learning dispositions and has become a positive influence in their lives.

 

Lara enjoys working collaboratively with others and is a fierce play advocate. She is strongly driven and a staunch believer in creating a fun environment for the children where she can learn they interests, beliefs and what they hold as meaningful to develop activities that are valued by the child and his or her family. 

 

Lara takes a holistic approach to assessment and intervention, implementing principles of sensory processing, behaviour support, and cognitive development into her occupational therapy practice. She is trained in DIR®Floortime and ABA Therapy (Applied Behavioural Analysis). She understands that each child is an individual with their own unique strengths and developmental needs, and looks to the latest research to implement evidenced based practice to achieve optimal outcomes.

Angela Ridgewell (Administration and Finance Officer)

With a 15-year career background in event management, Angela brings a wide range of administrative and organisational skills to Leaps and Bounds OT. As a mother of 3 young children, she provides a compassionate and welcoming face to our front desk and is accommodating to any request our clients may have. Angela is a friendly and highly organised member of our team who outside of work enjoys family time, reading and travel.