About Youth and Family Counseling
The Youth and Family Counseling program offers short and long term counseling for young people (children under 21) and their families. These services are performed by certified and licensed counselors on an out-patient basis, are available on a sliding scale, and are accessible to anyone regardless of ability to pay. Program staff offer extensive assessment services, substance abuse counseling, parenting skills assistance, anger management groups, and community referrals.
Danbury Youth Services is a licensed psychiatric clinic through the Department of Children and Families with a Child Psychiatrist on staff. DYS accepts HUSKY Insurance and has a sliding scale fee schedule.
The main goals of the Youth and Family Counseling Program are to enable clients to recognize their issue(s), take the necessary steps to deal with their problem(s), and learn how to manage their mental health on their own. Furthermore, the program assists in identifying clients’ strengths, working from a treatment plan that accentuates these qualities.
DYS counseling sessions not only address the needs of the individual client, but those of his or her family members as well. This directly relates to the agency’s mission in that the program seeks to strengthen the family as a whole. In addition, the program provides its clients with the tools to be productive members of society and to decrease the need for further professional intervention.
Major long term outcomes that the program addresses are (1) clients will have an improved ability to work independently on issues, and attain a desired level of achievement; (2) clients will have continued increased awareness and ownership of their issues and relationships; and (3) clients will have an increase in positive behavior.
Joe Arconti, MS., LPC, Clinical Director, has extensive experience working with youth at all developmental levels as a retired, 36 year veteran teacher/counselor in the Danbury Public School System. Mr. Arconti fully understands and appreciates the Danbury community culture and diversity. He brings this experience into the clinical field while working at DYS.
Dr. Sol Lee, MD., Medical Director, is a graduate of the University of Chicago and received her Doctor of Medicine from the University of Illinois. She did her General Psychiatry Residency at Harvard University and worked at North-Shore-Long Island Jewish Hospital before joining Danbury Hospital as the Director of Child and Adolescent Services.
Marita Repole, ED.D, LPC., received her ED.D from Boston University in Developmental Psychology/Education and works as a School Psychologist for Danbury Public Schools. She has over 25 years experience as a school psychologist and specializes in conducting psychological and developmental evaluations and individual and family counseling for ages 5-18. Ms. Repole also serves as an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Education/Educational Psychology at Western Connecticut State University.
Jackie Dudas, MS., L.P.C., received her Master’s Degree in Community Counseling from the University of Bridgeport. Jackie did her internship at DYS and instantly fell in love with the clientele and the work that was being done. She has been at DYS for almost 8 years- 9 including her internship! Jackie integrates cognitive-behavioral therapy into most of her counseling and values the importance of the client/counselor relationship. Jackie works with a variety of clientele, spanning from young children to teenagers and their families. When not at the agency, Jackie spends time with her husband and two boys, ages 8 and 12.
Liliana Yelin, MS., N.C.C., R.D.-N., is the bilingual Family and Youth Counselor. She received her Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Western Connecticut State University and her Certification from the National Board of Certified Counselors. She is also a Registered Dietitian and is Certified by the State of Connecticut.
Cynthia McGuire, BS, MS., received her Master’s Degree in Clinical Counseling from Post University. She currently works as a Behavioral Therapist in Newtown, Ct., while seeing clients at DYS in the evenings.
Michelle Weinstein, C.A.C., L.A.D.C., has been working in the mental health and addictions field for over 15 years. Michelle started her academic career and received her undergraduate degree from Western Connecticut State University in Communications. Michelle went on to pursue two Master’s of Science degrees from Post University in Clinical Counseling as well as Drug and Alcohol Counseling. Michelle is a Licensed Drug & Alcohol Counselor in Connecticut and has been actively working in various areas such as vocational, residential and clinical settings. In addition to her current position, Michelle is a nationally certified Mental Health First Aid instructor, offering a certification course to the community several times throughout the year. When not working, Michelle enjoys spending time with her family and friends, and is an active and passionate member of local animal sanctuaries and vegan communities advocating for animals.
Rachel Coombs, MS., N.C.C., received her Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Western Connecticut State University. Rachel is also the Project Director for the Danbury Youth Services G.A.L.s (Girls as Leaders) Program.
Haley Mozonski , MS candidate, is a counselor intern through Western Connecticut State University. Haley will graduate in Summer 2018 with a focus in Clinical Mental Health Counseling.