About Educare

Paediatrics | Psychiatry | Psychology  | Speech-Language Pathology | Occupational Therapy | Educational Support 

Our Story

EDUCARE was established in 1999 and has since developed into a multi-disciplinary practice that brings many related specialist medical, health and educational services into one location for the convenience of families in Newcastle and the Hunter Region.

While we work with clients of all ages, we specialise in helping children and teenagers to enhance their development potential and wellbeing. Our services include a comprehensive range of assessments, diagnostic and treatment to support families.

Our team is highly experienced and works together to empower children and teens to overcome mental, emotional, social and behavioural roadblocks.

When you book an appointment, you can expect genuine care and a personalised approach to improving health and quality of life for yourself and your child.

Our Vision

To unlock potential and
enhance well-being

Dr Bruce R Youlden

BA; BEd; MA; MA; Ph.D
Managing Director

Dr Bruce Youlden took on the administrative responsibilities as the Managing Director of EDUCARE Specialist Services in January 2019.  Following on from a career of 42 years in Educational Leadership settings, Bruce is now directing his energies towards the continuing growth and development of EDUCARE as a multi-disciplinary medical, health and educational practice.

Child Psychologists Newcastle

Dr Anne-Marie J Youlden

Founding Director
Educational & Child Psychologist

Dr Anne-Marie Youlden is the Founding Director of EDUCARE and commenced her work as an Educational and Child Psychologist in Belmont and Warners Bay in 1999. Since that time and under her leadership, EDUCARE has grown into a leading multi-disciplinary medical and health practice within the region and is now located in the professional hub of Charlestown.

Our Team

Based in Newcastle and serving the Hunter Region, our medical and health specialists include paediatricians, psychiatrists, psychologists, speech-language pathologists, occupational and behavioural therapists.

Neurologists in Newcastle

Dr Patricia Caruana

MD (Medicine), General Neurologist

Dr. Patricia Caruana is an accomplished General Neurologist and Neuroimmunologist with over two decades of medical experience. Her clinical interests span headache management, epilepsy, neuroimmunology, and movement disorders.

Child & Adolescent Psychiatrist Newcastle

Dr Ulli Schall

Child & Adolescent Psychiatrist

Dr Ulrich Schall has many years of experience working with young people affected by mental illness, which is complemented by a substantial track record in mental health research at the University of Newcastle’s Priority Centre for Brain and Mental Health Research.

Adult Psychiatrist Newcastle

Dr Cyriac Mathew

Adult Psychiatrist

Dr Cyriac Mathew has many years of experience ensuring quality care of people affected by various mental illnesses, including assessment, medical management and psychosocial interventions.

Adolescent and Adult Psychiatrist Newcastle

Dr Irosh Fernando

Adolescent and Adult Psychiatrist

Dr Fernando has joined the team of four Consultant Psychiatrists at EDUCARE and works in close collaboration with the multi-disciplinary team within the practice.

Nicole Reece

Dr Nicole Reece

Senior Clinical Psychologist and Supervisor

Dr Nicole Reece has completed her PhD in Clinical Psychology, specialising in mental health, and has been practising since 2008. She has experience in a wide variety of settings including community, private, academic and inpatient environments.

Freya Powe

Freya Powe

Senior Clinical and Lead Psychologist

Freya Powe is a clinical psychologist and experienced in working with complex and persistent mental health presentations in children and teenagers. Freya is a warm and empathetical clinician with broad experience in working with a diverse range of presentations across the lifespan.

Dr Heather Stuart

Educational & Child Psychologist

Heather Stuart has twenty-five years’ experience as a school counsellor and educational psychologist. She has a strong affinity with children, particularly children with special needs.

Maria Andreoli

Consulting Psychologist

Maria Andreoli is a caring and experienced registered psychologist, specializing in supporting children and teenagers facing learning differences, trauma and mental health challenges such as anxiety and depression. Her goal is to empower children and teenagers, helping them feel confident and resilient.

Tristen Hatch

Consulting Psychologist

Tristen completed her Bachelor of Psychology (Hons) degree at the University of Newcastle. She has a long standing interest in working with children and teens, to assist them in identifying goals that are in line with their values and beliefs to enable them to live meaningful and rich lives.

David Lambert

Senior Consulting Psychologist

David Lambert specialises in neuro-psychometric assessment. He has expertise in the diagnosis of Intellectual and related disabilities, Language and Learning Disorders, ADHD and a range mental health presentations.

Melanie Grabham

Consulting Psychologist and EMDR Lead

Melanie Grabham is an experienced mental health professional with a background including private practice, community health, education, and academic roles. Specializing in working with children, adolescents, and trauma survivors, Melanie employs a diverse range of therapeutic approaches to create a collaborative and safe space for clients to address issues such as anxiety, depression, and self-esteem. Her extensive expertise and empathetic approach empower clients to achieve lasting positive change in their lives.

Robert Baird

Consulting Psychologist and Assessment-Diagnostic Lead

Robert Baird is an experienced Psychologist who focuses on conducting evidence-based assessments for learning, ADHD, ASD, cognitive abilities, and a range of other mental health conditions. Robert is dedicated to offering comprehensive and systematic evaluations for individuals across all age groups, including children, teenagers, and adults.

David Pearce

David Pearce

Consulting Psychologist

David Pearce is a Consulting Psychologist who has had significant experience working with complex issues experienced by older teens and adults. Specifically, David works with a range of mental disorders including anxiety, depression, emotional dysregulation issues, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, complex relationship issues along with character and self esteem building. David’s approach focuses on bringing a relaxed and relatable approach to therapy.

Cainan Roncati

Cainan Roncati

Consulting Psychologist

Cainan is a registered Consulting Psychologist with a strong focus in working with older teenagers and adult clients, specializing in assisting individuals through life transitions, enhancing coping mechanisms, and improving overall quality of life.

Katrina Sweeny

Consulting Psychologist

Katrina Sweeny is a warm and very experienced clinician who uses evidence-based therapies to enhance the wellbeing and growth journey of her clients. She has a passion for working with children, young people, their carers and families to draw out strengths in a nurturing and welcoming therapeutic space.


Katrina Allan

Speech Pathology Coordinator

Katrina has a special interest in assisting children with speech and language disorders, behavior difficulties, and children with social communication difficulties. She is particularly passionate about working with children on the autism spectrum.

Claire Cooper

Senior Speech-Language Pathologist

Claire comes to EDUCARE as a passionate Speech Pathologist with particular interests in literacy, ASD and working with clients and families. With a strong focus on providing clients with a supportive family-centred approach, Claire enjoys working collaboratively with families, educators and other supports to create and achieve meaningful goals.

Emily Fuge

Speech-Language Pathologist

Emily is a bubbly and enthusiastic Speech and Language Pathologist with a strong functional focus in therapy. She works closely with families and loves to support children and teens and to enable them to reach their potential with personalised goals and intervention plans.

Belinda Waldock

Speech-Language Pathologist

Belinda is an engaging, approachable Speech and Language Pathologist who enjoys providing therapy in a fun and comfortable environment. She loves working with children and families who experience disabilities and helping them towards achieving their speech and language goals.


Occupational Therapist – Appointment Pending

Victoria Hayes

Occupational Therapist

Victoria is a highly qualified, experienced and specialized Occupational Therapist. She brings a deeply personal commitment to skills development, aiming to enhance well-being and success for each of her clients. She provides a client and family-centered approach, working collaboratively to set meaningful goals and improve performance in daily activities.

Esther McKenzie

Occupational Therapist

Esther is an experienced and highly regarded Occupational Therapist who has worked across the full life span including children, adolescents and adults. Esther has a real passion for working with children and teens and in so doing, seeks to provide a holistic, family centred and collaborative approach to empower them to achieve their goals. 

Emmanuel Antoniades

Behaviour Support Practitioner

Emmanuel is a dedicated and highly skilled Behaviour Support Practitioner with a strong educational background, characterized by his passion for enhancing the lives of those he serves. Emmanuel has demonstrated an ability to address complex behaviours, always approaching his clients with warmth, empathy, and a deep understanding of their unique needs.

Nicola Vundum

Social Worker & Behaviour Support Practitioner

Nicola is a dedicated Social & Behaviour Support Practitioner with 14 years experience in the disability sector. Nicola has worked extensively with individuals of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities, including those with mental health concerns and developmental disabilities. Her approach is deeply informed by a trauma-informed lens, ensuring that each individual’s unique needs are met with sensitivity and understanding.

Julie Fletcher

Client and NDIS Coordinator

Kayla Weick

Medical Receptionist

Tanya Wells

Medical Receptionist

Ebony Duncan

Medical Receptionist

Rhianon Moroney

Medical Receptionist

Shyden Jordan

Medical Receptionist

Frequently Asked Questions

EDUCARE was established in 1999 by Educational and Child Psychologist, Dr Anne-Marie Youlden. It has since developed into a leading multi-disciplinary practice designed to bring many related specialist medical, health and educational services into one location for the convenience of families in the Hunter Region.

The EDUCARE team consists of a wide range of highly experienced medical and health specialists, who all work together to empower our clients and their families. 

Our specialists include paediatricians, psychiatrists, psychologists, speech-language pathologists, occupational therapists and teachers.

You may have observed that your son or daughter has the potential to perform at least equal to peers, perhaps even better, but for some reason they do not seem to reach their potential.

Similarly, you may feel as an adult that you are encountering a range of difficulties that are creating barriers to your emotional, mental or professional well-being.

EDUCARE can help because it has the specialist professional expertise to identify both the barriers and potential solutions to enhance well-being and learning and every-day living

EDUCARE provides a comprehensive range of assessments, diagnostic and treatment services

We take a fully integrated approach, meeting family needs by working closely with referring medical practitioners, health professionals and educators

EDUCARE provides a range of target services and programs to meet the varying needs of individuals and families. You can contact us for Pre & Post Natal Counselling, Autism Spectrum Management, Social and Behaviour Intervention Programs, Parent Training, Medico-Legal Matters and WorkCover Support.

Funding support for families includes: Medicare; Private Health Funds; and NDIS.

View our NDIS page or reach out to us to find out more.

EDUCARE is conveniently located and accessible in meeting community needs throughout Newcastle, Lake Macquarie, Lower and Upper Hunter, Port Stephens, Central Coast and the Northern NSW Region.

For more information or to arrange an appointment, please contact us.