Sprout Center for Emotional Growth and Development is designed to address the needs of children and their families in all stages of life.

meet the team


Sprout Center for Emotional Growth and Development was founded in early 2013 out of the love for the study and practice of early childhood and family wellness. 

Sprout Center for Emotional Growth and Development is designed to address the needs of children and their families in all stages of life.

Consultation, training and supervision are also provided for all agencies and individuals that serve an important role in a family’s life including parents and caregivers, Childcare providers, Educators and Schools, Medical professionals, Legal representatives, Parenting groups and other organizations.

therapy services

training & consultation

clinical & reflective supervision

early childhood development


erin troup


Erin is a Licensed Professional Counselor specializing in early childhood social emotional needs, particularly attachment, grief & loss, trauma and anxiety. Erin earned her undergraduate degree in psychology and child development from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. She attended Chatham University for her MS in counseling and earned her Infant Mental Health Certificate in Pennsylvania’s first Infant Mental Health cohort.

In 2013 after work on a seminal grant supporting postpartum depression, Erin felt there was a gap in supportive counseling and consultation for many young families. She opened her practice: Sprout Center for Emotional Growth and Development, LLC out of the love and passion for supporting children and their families. She has worked in the fields of Mental Health, Early Intervention and Behavioral Health service for over 15 years. Erin has presented on a variety of topics including mental health, grief and loss, social emotional and child development throughout the United States; but she calls Pittsburgh home. Erin is a registered Child- Parent Psychotherapy (CPP) clinician, Certified in Thanatology through the Association for Death Education and Counseling and an Endorsed Infant Mental Health Mentor.

Erin has been appointed as a member of the State Advisory Council on Early Childhood Education and Care as well as Treasurer for the Pennsylvania Association for Infant Mental Health. 

Samantha is a Licensed Professional Counselor with a focus on children, adolescents, and young adults. She specializes in helping children manage and cope with anxiety, depression, and trauma (separation from a primary caregiver, death of a loved one, sexual abuse, foster care, other stressors) and has been practicing since 2013. Samantha is also adept at helping parents manage their children’s challenging behaviors. She is trained in Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT), Child-Parent Psychotherapy (CPP), and the Incredible Years.

Samantha obtained her undergraduate degree in Psychology from the University of South Carolina and her Masters in Counseling Psychology from Chatham University. She enjoys utilizing a strengths–based blended approach culled from dyadic therapy, play therapy, mindfulness, and cognitive behavioral therapy in order to individualize therapy to best meet clients’ needs. She firmly believes in reducing the stigma associated with mental health care and enabling others to live their best lives.



Skylar is a graduate of Pennsylvania State Erie, The Behrend College with a BA in Psychology. She earned her Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from Chatham University. Skylar has been providing Intensive Behavioral Health Services to children and their families in the home, community, and school settings beginning in 2017.

After several years of working with individuals on the Autism Spectrum, Skylar transitioned to working with children and their families who have experienced traumatic life events. Using strategies from multiple orientations, Skylar works to create an environment that promotes strengths, healing, growth, and healthy attachments. 



Brittney D. Singletary is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, who attended the University of Pittsburgh’s School of Social Work Program and received an MSW in Mental Health and Integrated Health. Throughout her six years of experience Brittney has provided care to youth ranging from early childhood to late adolescents and their families in variety of settings.

Brittney’s areas of focus are early childhood trauma, acute/chronic/complex trauma, ADHD, anxiety, depression and family conflict resolution. She has worked with families in navigating school behavioral health, IEP meetings, behavior modification techniques and familial interpersonal communication. She specializes in helping children develop increased coping skills, social emotional development, and interpersonal skillsets. Brittney has used her training in Attachment, Regulation and Competency (ARC), Child-Parent Psychotherapy (CPP) Incredible Years (IY)- Small Group Dina and Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST) to help individuals overcome significant stressors that impede the life span and improve resiliency for the client.

As an LCSW, Brittney is multifaceted and utilizes a person-center fundamental framework. Her psychotherapy approaches consist of dyadic therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, motivational interviewing, play therapy and attachment-based therapy. Her diverse and profound skillset has allowed her to provide optimal care and empowerment to all individuals in need of social and mental health services.



Kathleen is a National Certified Counselor with a focus on children. She has experience working with children who are managing Anxiety, Depression, ADHD, Trauma and loss (Death of a loved one, domestic violence, sexual abuse, foster care, bullying), behavioral challenges, and conflict with others. 

Kathleen has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Communications from Duquesne University. She received her Master’s in Mental Health Counseling also from Duquesne. Kathleen recognizes and values individuality and thus incorporates a variety of approaches to best meet the needs of each client and family. She primarily utilizes elements of Mindfulness, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and Play Therapy. She is trained in the Incredible Years Curriculum, and ASIST. Kathleen’s hope is to help individuals find meaning from their experiences and live authentic and fulfilling lives.

Kathleen Kerr


Stephanie graduated from California University of PA in 2013 with a BA in psychology and a sociology minor. She later returned to California University of PA where she obtained a MS in Clinical Mental Health Counseling in 2019. Additionally, she has a certification in Addictive Disorders, and is a Nationally Certified Counselor. Stephanie is actively working towards state licensure. 

Stephanie has experience working with adults, families, and children ages 5-18, in school and community settings. Over the last 10 years she worked at the partial hospitalization level of care, a behavioral health school, and presently works at an intensive out-patient program for drug and alcohol addiction. Stephanie has worked with a myriad of mental health diagnoses including but not limited to anxiety, depression, autism, suicide, addiction, behavioral, self-harm and ADHD. She is also familiar and closely involved with, foster care.

Stephanie believes that creativity, imagination and a true interest in a child’s individuality are crucial to counseling. With parents, she provides a space to grow and learn with their child that is free of judgement and respectful of the family unit. Stephanie employs an approach that validates, explores, teaches, supports, challenges, encourages, and empowers. She facilitates an environment where strengths are celebrated and growth and change are possible. Stephanie implements a holistic style that often includes some combination of strength-based, play, cognitive behavioral, mindfulness, person-centered, and solution focused therapies. In this way, she hopes to work together with the client to help them achieve self-determined goals. 

Stephanie Craig


Stephanie is a Licensed Professional Counselor specializing in perinatal/postpartum mood disorders and early childhood social emotional needs including attachment and emotional regulation through a family focused perspective. She earned her undergraduate degree in Psychology at the University of Pittsburgh and MS degree in Counseling Psychology at Chatham University with a completion of an Infant Mental Health certificate program.

Upon graduation, Stephanie worked with children and families receiving wraparound services within Allegheny county while earning her professional counselor licensure. In 2015, Stephanie shifted focus to working with individuals dealing with perinatal/postpartum mood disorders including anxiety, depression, obsessive compulsive disorder, traumatic birth, and infertility.

While addressing maternal mental health concerns, Stephanie utilizes an infant mental health focus in order to strengthen the attachment formed between the child and caregivers. She believes there is a need to increase the education provided to expecting families regarding the postpartum period as well as services available.



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Kara (she/her) is a graduate of Florida State University with a BFA in Musical Theatre and earned her Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from Chatham University. Kara’s experience includes working collaboratively with children, adolescents, and their families to identify tailored approaches to promote resiliency and flourishing within the family structure.

Kara’s areas of focus include trauma, anxiety, adjustment concerns, depression, disruptive behaviors, and family conflict resolution. She specializes in applying creativity to assist children in developing increased coping skills, social-emotional development, and interpersonal skills. While Kara defines her approach as strengths-based person-centered at its core, she also utilizes elements of play therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, art therapy, narrative therapy, and systemic therapy. Kara is an LGBTQIA+ and neurodiversity-affirming therapist. 

Kara Ziringer


Katelyn earned her undergraduate degree in Early Childhood and Elementary Education at Duquesne University. She then went on to graduate from The University of Pittsburgh with her masters in Applied Developmental Psychology. 

While she worked as both a preschool teacher and childcare director early in her career, for the past fourteen years Katelyn has been an educational coach and consultant. She has spent time consulting in early childhood classrooms on topics including enriching classroom environments, defining teacher roles and responsibilities, and implementing developmentally appropriate practice. However, the focus of Katelyn’s work has always been on supporting young children with challenging behaviors and the teachers and families who care for them. She believes in the importance of early childhood education and that with the right supports in place, all children can grow and thrive in their learning environments.

Katelyn is endorsed by the Pennsylvania Alliance for Infant Mental Health as an Early Childhood Family Specialist and is also a PQAS certified instructor with the PA Key. 

katelyn collins

Education Director

Laura Nirella is a Licensed Professional Counselor with Masters of Arts in Counseling, with a focused trac of Marriage and Family Therapy.  Laura has worked with families in the home, school, and community settings for over 6 years.

Laura specializes in working with children, teens and families; and helps others develop enhanced coping skills, social emotional development, interpersonal skills, and more.  Laura utilizes a strengths-based, trauma informed, dyadic approach, including aspects of play in therapy, CBT, and mindfulness, all tailored to the clients needs.

Laura Nirella


Arti Maharaj is a licensed professional counselor. She received her undergraduate degree in Psychology at La Roche College and her Masters of Fine Arts degree in Clinical-Community Psychology at Point Park University. She offers individual therapy for kids between the ages of 6-18 and family treatment. She has extensive experience in community and outpatient services with children, adolescents, and families. She has 8 years of experience working in the field with depression, anxiety, autism spectrum ADHD, PTSD, and numerous other mental health disorders. She began employment with Intensive Behavioral Health Services providing in-home services to children and their families. As a practicum student she was trained to use Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. She is also trained in Alternative for Families-Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Dialectical Behavior Therapy. While employed with WPH’s Behavioral Health Community Services she developed more experience in the community through Outpatient/School Based Services and has developed knowledge of student support to help support parents in seeking support for children in school. During her time with this department she also received specialized training for children with ADHD through the use of COPE Strategies and was also trained in Structural Family Therapy during her time there. She also identifies as a multicultural therapist and exercises cultural competence and has worked with a number of diverse populations.

arti maharaj


Meghan is a Licensed Professional counselor, with a focus on children and adolescents. She specializes in working with children and adolescents with depression, anxiety, ADHD and Autism Spectrum disorder. She has spent the last four years providing in-home family therapy services to families struggling to navigate normal life stressors in conjunction with their child’s mental health concerns.  

Meghan received her undergraduate degree in psychology from La Roche University. She continued her education at Chatham University where she earned a Masters of Counseling Psychology. During this time Meghan provided treatment to children with Autism in a classroom setting. She also has experience with preschool aged children, children in foster care and teen parents. 

Meghan has experience with Structural Family Therapy interventions, mindfulness and errorless teaching strategies. She believes all children have the potential to be successful despite any difficulties they might be facing.  

meghan spears


Caitlin received her Bachelor of Science in Journalism with a concentration in public relations from West Virginia University. She then went on to pursue her passion of helping others and received her Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from West Virginia University.

Caitlin is a Nationally Certified Counselor and has experience working with children ages 3 to 17 with a wide range of presenting concerns such as anxiety, depression, grief, and substance use. She also has recent experience working at a college counseling center with students ages 17 to 28. In her sessions, Caitlin values her clients’ individuality and strives to help them maintain their sense of self-worth while guiding them to a healthy lifestyle.

Caitlin Cuomo


Michelle Altman is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) specializing in pediatric mental health. She is passionate about working with families to address common concerns such as anxiety, stress management, depression, and emotion dysregulation. She values meeting clients “where they are” and helping clients navigate life’s challenges using the power of empathy and validation. Michelle earned her Masters in Social Work (MSW) and Certificate of Advanced Study (CAS) in Trauma-Informed Care from Syracuse University (Go, Orange!) Michelle is also proud to be a Latinx, bilingual provider; offering therapy services in both English and Spanish.

michelle altman


Holly is a graduate of Carlow University with a BA is Early Childhood Education. She earned her Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from Chatham University. Holly spent 8 years as an early childhood educator working with infants through preschool-aged children. With this experience she developed an understanding of child development and ways to support children developmentally, socially, and cognitively. Through her work, Holly had developed an understanding the importance of working collaboratively with families to find the best ways to support children. Through her work, Holly uses play therapy, strength-based, person-centered, art therapy, and mindfulness techniques. Holly believes in working collaboratively with each child to recognize and further develop their strengths and capabilities.



Allie graduated from The Pennsylvania State University in 2014 with a B.S in Recreation, Park and Tourism Management. Not long after graduation, she moved to Nashville and started a career in hospitality and event planning. Allie moved back to Pittsburgh with her husband and son to be closer to family in 2018. She continued her career in hospitality and event planning at a hotel downtown until the pandemic began and the hotel closed down. She found herself as a stay at home mom (which she always dreamed of being able to do!) and welcomed their baby girl in August 2020. She is now back in the workforce, loving every minute of helping the community through Sprout Center and is excited for her future with the company!


Office Manager

Kara is a Licensed Professional Counselor who received a BA in Psychology from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania in 2001, an MS in Applied Developmental Psychology from University of Pittsburgh in 2006, and an MSEd in Community Counseling from Duquesne University in 2013. She has been working in the field of mental health for 20 years in most levels of care, including inpatient, partial hospitalization, in-home, and in schools. Most recently, she has spent time working as a mental health treatment specialist for preschool aged children on the Autism spectrum, as a family based mental health therapist, and as a school based therapist. Kara employs a strengths-based, client-centered approach in her work with children, adolescents, and their families. This approach includes techniques from cognitive behavioral therapy, solution focused therapy, the use of play and art, and mindfulness techniques.



Rachel Jones is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, who attended the University of Cincinnati's School of Social Work Program and received an MSW in Mental Health. Rachel has worked with children and their families in home, school, and community settings for the past 5 years.

Rachel has specialized in working with children on the Autism Spectrum and those diagnosed with behavioral disorders as well as depression and anxiety. Rachel works to help children develop enhanced coping skills, social emotional development, interpersonal skills, and more. Rachel utilizes a strengths-based, client-centered approach in her work.

Rachel Jones


Katie has been a passionate advocate and determined worker for child and adolescent health, wellness, and safety for over 20 years. Her previous professional experiences are in behavioral psychology, kinesiology, and communications. She is a graduate of Stetson University with her Masters of Science in Marriage, Couples, and Family Therapy, a certificate in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, and a certificate in Play and Expressive Arts Therapy. Katie began her therapeutic work focused on serving adolescents and families in the foster care system at a group home, as well as, adult individuals, adolescents, children, and families at a community mental health agency. Her practice includes serving individuals of diverse backgrounds and cultures, who are experiencing trauma, depression, anxiety, suicidal ideation and self harm, eating disorders, and grief. 

Based on these experiences and in conjunction with her training in adoption competency, play therapy, sand tray, psychodrama, Trauma-focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, trauma-informed techniques, Gottman Couples Therapy, Prepare/Enrich, expressive arts techniques, suicide prevention, multicultural competency, and mindfulness, Katie focuses on providing an integrated counseling approach to meet each individual client where they are. She utilizes a Person-Centered, Attachment-Based, Satir Transformational Systemic foundation, with techniques that draw from Dialetical Behavior Therapy, Play Therapy, Mindfulness, and Expressive Arts. 
Katie believes in walking alongside and working collaboratively with her clients on their journeys toward wellness and healing. Her passion is with children and families in the adoption and foster care communities, as well as increasing access to mental health services and expanding current therapeutic structures to be more inclusive and culturally representative and respectful for all.


Regine is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker focusing her work with children, adolescents, and families across all life domains. As a graduate from University of Pittsburgh, she is an experienced clinician with over 15 years of experience. She has provided services in the home, school, and community settings; as well as working with children with special needs, children and families who are involved with foster care and child welfare system. 

Regine’s area of expertise is in childhood trauma, social-emotions regulation, behavioral disorders and children on the Autism Spectrum. She values involvement from caregivers to better enhance the child and family functioning as a unit. Regine utilizes Solution Focus therapy, Structural Family Therapy, Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, play therapy techniques and Zones of Regulation. Along with these approaches, Regine has helped family understand how trauma impacts daily life functioning, providing psychoeducation to caregivers on how to effectively gain an understanding of their child’s behaviors, and teach children to develop tools to manage their own emotions and feelings. 

Regine RAWA


Heather Kane is a Licensed Social Worker working towards clinical licensure. She received her B.S. in Psychology from The University of Pittsburgh and her Master’s Degree in Social Work with a certificate in School Social Work from Western New Mexico University. Heather has participated in research and advocacy for early childhood development and racial equity through internships with The University of Pittsburgh’s Office of Child Development and The National Center for Children in Poverty. Additionally, she has provided mental health services for children and their families in home, school, and community settings for over five years. 

Heather uses a strengths-based, client centered approach, incorporating cognitive behavioral therapy, play therapy, expressive arts techniques, and mindfulness. Her experience includes working with children with emotional and behavioral disorders such as depression, anxiety, adjustment concerns, ADHD, and behavioral challenges. She specializes in helping children with social emotional development, coping skills, resilience, and interpersonal skills. Heather has assisted families with navigating issues within the school and ensuring appropriate supports are in place. She strives to empower children and families to overcome challenges they are facing while building upon their unique strengths. 

Heather KANE


Beth is a Licensed Social Worker passionate about working with children and their families. She graduated from the University of Pittsburgh's School of Social Work with her MSW, as well as an additional certificate as a Home and School Visitor. Beth has been working with children and families for over 7 years and has experience in a variety of settings including school based therapy, special education, child welfare and most recently, working to develop crisis response programs in local City government alongside First Responders. She also has experience presenting to a variety of groups on topics including trauma, grief/loss, and crisis de-escalation.

Beth's areas of focus are around trauma in all its forms (acute, chronic, complex, including early childhood), grief and loss, ADHD, ODD, depression and anxiety. Beth has completed training as a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional, and utilizes a mix of interventions and philosophies including play therapy, DBT, art therapy, mindfulness, Conscious Discipline, and Nurturing Parenting. Beth also has a particular passion and unique competency in working with First Responders, Violence Interrupters and their families.

As a therapist, Beth centers the importance of relationships and play. Her approach can be described as playful and creative, strengths focused, and person centered. Beth welcomes a diverse client base, and is committed to creating an environment of safety and healing for BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, and neurodivergent clients. 

Elizabeth Patterson



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