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Makaela Field, Speech Pathologist & Feeding Therapist

OUR TEAM

Makeala Field - Certified Practicing Speech Pathologist

I am a paediatric feeding therapist, speech pathologist and mumma of 1 very cheeky little man. I started my speech pathology career over 15 years ago and since then I have spent many years working in acute and hospital-based care, including the neonatal intensive care unit and special care nursery, as well as private practice.

 

In 2021 I decided it was time to expanded into my own private practice, to pursue my passion for working with babies, children and families of little ones, to help them on their feeding journey. As well as continuing to provide a consultative service in the special care nurseries at both Pindara Private Hospital and Gold Coast Private Hospital.

 

I believe in providing a gentle, family focused, evidenced based and responsive approach to feeding challenges, as pleasurable feeding can lay the groundwork for infant-health, foster the parent-child relationship and a lifelong positive relationship with food. I love nothing more than supporting a mum to enjoy breastfeeding her baby or assist a family to turn stress and battle filled mealtimes into a time of fun and connection. But beliefs and passion alone are not enough!

 

To ensure that I am providing the very highest level of support to the families I work with, I have sought out experts both locally and internationally to learn from. My work is all evidence based and draws on the teaching of training programs including:

- Supporting oral feeding in fragile infants (SOFFI)

- The Ellyn Satter Institute and the Division of Responsibility

- Responsive feeding and Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID)

- Certification of completion of lactation specific training by Australasia Lactation Courses 

- Certification as a Neuroprotective Developmental Care (NDC) practitioner 

- Accreditation in Orofacial myology

One of the corner stone programs used internationally to help children learn to eat a wide variety of new foods (including those pesky vegetable) is the Sequential-Oral-Sensory (SOS) program. After completing the foundation training, I have gone on to complete the advanced courses in:

- Autism Spectrum Disorder and SOS

- Achieving the just right level of arousal for learning

- Helping Children Transition off Feeding Tubes 

 

Away from my clinical work, I have been an executive member of the Queensland branch of Speech Pathology Australia (SPA) for the past 7 years. I have also been very privileged to be selected as one of the content experts to review some of SPA’s best practice guideline, these guidelines serve to provide a standard of management for speech pathologist throughout Australia. However, to date, the academic achievement that I am the most proud of, is having an article published in the Journal of Dysphagia in 2018 (DOI 10.1007/s00455-018-9908-5 - if you have the urge for some light bedtime reading).

 

Despite all of the training, formal education and academia, I still believe that I have learnt the most valuable lessons from the families that I have worked with, and my own little man. The littles ones in my life have shown me how to take the theory and apply it so that it works for each individual child, their family situation and their values.

My 
Story

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Gabby Den Elzen - Certified Practicing Speech Pathologist

Gabby graduated with a Masters of Speech Pathology from Griffith University in 2015 and started her career working with both adults and children in regional Queensland and England. Over the last four years she has chosen to focus on her true passion, paediatric feeding.  
 
Gabby has experience working with some of the most vulnerable babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit and Special Care Nursery at Gold Coast University Hospital. She has continued to support these little miracles and their families once discharged home through ongoing follow up in an outpatient setting at the hospital, and now is providing this support in the community.  
 
In addition to a Masters of Speech Pathology, Gabby also holds a Bachelor's Degree in Psychological Science and a Master's Degree in Human Services (Rehabilitation Counselling). She is a Certified and Practicing Member of Speech Pathology Australia and has completed numerous courses to further develop her skills, including those in Responsive Feeding, Tube Weaning, and SOS Therapy.

 

Through extensive education, training and experience, Gabby has helped many families and children with a range of feeding challenges including: 

  • Breastfeeding challenges 

  • Bottle refusal and oral aversions  

  • Managing coughing and wet breathing with intake of food or fluids 

  • Poor weight gain due to feeding challenges 

  • Mealtime and behaviour management 

  • Picky eating and restricted dietary variety 

 
Gabby is also the mother of one sweet little girl and is very aware of the challenges and stresses that parenting can bring. She understands that the ‘one size fits all, general recommendations’ don’t work for a lot of families, and will work with you to find answers and solutions that work for you, your family, and specific circumstances.

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My 
Story

This is your About page. This space is a great opportunity to give a full background on who you are, what you do, and what your site has to offer. Your users are genuinely interested in learning more about you, so don’t be afraid to share personal anecdotes to create a more friendly quality.

Every website has a story, and your visitors want to hear yours. This space is a great opportunity to provide any personal details you want to share with your followers. Include interesting anecdotes and facts to keep readers engaged.

 

Double click on the text box to start editing your content and make sure to add all the relevant details you want site visitors to know. If you’re a business, talk about how you started and share your professional journey. Explain your core values, your commitment to customers and how you stand out from the crowd. Add a photo, gallery or video for even more engagement.

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Stacey Watene Accredited Specialist Paediatric Dietitian

Stacey is an accredited specialist dietitian with over 5 years’ experience working with infants, children and adolescents in the acute hospital and community setting with varied nutrition needs.
 
She has developed specialist paediatric nutrition skills in tube feeding, blended tube feeding, rapid tube weaning, neonatal nutrition, cystic fibrosis, constipation, obesity, food allergies, eating disorder management, paediatric feeding and avoidant restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID).
 
She has completed a Bachelor of Nutrition and Dietetics at Griffith University, national paediatric dietetic training with the Dietitian’s Association of Australia and numerous courses to further develop her skills in infant feeding, responsive feeding therapy, food allergy and gastrostomy management to ensure she provides high level nutrition care backed by evidence.
 
She is a current member of the Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA) and the Australasian Society of Parental and Enteral Nutrition (AuSPEN) committee for Blended Tube Feeding.
 
With two of her own children having specific nutrition needs, she is able to understand the difficulties with applying nutrition recommendations in the home.  She is passionate about helping families to overcome individual nutrition problems, enjoy mealtimes and support the healthy growth and development of their children.

 

My 
Story

This is your About page. This space is a great opportunity to give a full background on who you are, what you do, and what your site has to offer. Your users are genuinely interested in learning more about you, so don’t be afraid to share personal anecdotes to create a more friendly quality.

Every website has a story, and your visitors want to hear yours. This space is a great opportunity to provide any personal details you want to share with your followers. Include interesting anecdotes and facts to keep readers engaged.

 

Double click on the text box to start editing your content and make sure to add all the relevant details you want site visitors to know. If you’re a business, talk about how you started and share your professional journey. Explain your core values, your commitment to customers and how you stand out from the crowd. Add a photo, gallery or video for even more engagement.

Jasmine Penwarn - Accredited Practicing Dietitian

Jasmine has a Bachelor of Nutrition and Dietetics and is currently completing her Monash low FODMAP accreditation. She has a keen interest in:

  • Paediatrics including faltering growth

  • Tube feeding

  • Antenatal care


She has experience working with clients with chronic diseases such as:

  • Diabetes

  • Cardiovascular disease

  • Gastro oesophageal reflux disease (GORD)

  • Irritable bowel syndrome(IBS),

  • Nutrition and weight management. 


Jasmine is passionate about building connections and optimising client outcomes using the highest quality of care.

Jasmine can provide a detailed and individualised approach to patient care. She will provide education and intervention strategies, which are easy to put into action. Jasmine will help you make improvements to your health and manage a variety of conditions. Jasmine takes a whole-person and individualised approach, to healthy and long-term nutrition management. Nutrition is a behaviour as much as it is a science, so Jasmine will take the time to provide you with simple steps and strategies, to help you achieve your goals.

Jasmine uses motivational interviewing techniques to help people understand what drives their change and help them put in place plans that will lead to success. 

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