About Me

My Approach

I integrate approaches from various leading schools of thought into my counselling and psychotherapy work including contemporary relational psychotherapies, EMDR, Brainspotting, feminist, anti-oppressive, somatic and trauma-focussed approaches, cognitive behavioural, expressive arts approaches and mindfulness and other perspectives from a number of spiritual traditions.

I believe all people have innate strengths, gifts and creativity, and can benefit from an empathic, curious, and safe therapeutic relationship through which to explore the material of their life. I am passionate about supporting people of all ages to deepen their relationship to the wisdom within, and to grow and give voice to their experiences.


My Background

I hold a undergraduate degree in English Literature and Women's Studies from McGill University, a Master’s degree in Social Work with a Certificate in Palliative and Supportive Care from the University of Toronto and a graduate diploma in Expressive Arts Therapy from CREATE (Toronto). I also spent a year at OCAD and have been a mindfulness practitioner for over two decades. As a lifelong learner, I have pursued extensive training in trauma, attachment, mindfulness, EMDR, Brainspotting and end of life and bereavement care.

Based in Toronto, I hold more than a decade of experience working in both private practice and various paediatric, youth and adult health, mental health, and palliative care settings, including over a decade working as a grief and palliative care counsellor with the Dr. Jay Children's Grief Centre and six years at the Hospital for Sick Children. 

I incorporate mindfulness and somatic approaches into a trauma-informed, attachment-informed, relational, intersectional and eclectic approach.

Training, Publications & Media

Teaching, Consultation and Facilitation

I have delivered over 70 training sessions to professionals in the fields of health, mental health and education across North America and offer supervision and consultation. 

In addition to my private practice and agency work, I currently serve as faculty in the Mindfulness & Compassion Professional Training Program for Healthcare & End-of-Life Care with Sarana Institute and SickKids Hospital, and as an instructor in the Children's Grief and Bereavement Certificate Program at the SickKids Centre for Community Mental Health (formerly Hincks Dellcrest) and in the Death, Dying and Bereavement Certificate Program at Wilfrid Laurier University. 

Publications & Media

  • Lead writer and content developer for Out of the Shadows: Supporting Children and Youth Grieving a Substance-Related Death presentation and print resources, Dr. Jay Children's Grief Centre, 2019
  • Expert speaker for LifeSpeak video series on grief, 2018
  • contributing writer and reviewer in development of KidsGrief.ca, Virtual Hospice, 2017
  • Toye, Lysa & Andrea Warnick; Writing Interventions to Support Bereaved Students in Supporting Bereaved Students at School, Jacqueline A. Brown and Shane R. Jimerson, Co-Editors, 2016
  • Toye, Lysa & Andrea Warnick; Commemorative Tattoos as Connection in The Tattoo Project: Visual Culture and the Digital Archive, Deborah Davidson ed., 2016
  • Toye, Lysa; contributions to A Handbook for Volunteers: Supporting Children Grieving the Dying and Death of a Loved One, Children and Youth Grief Network, 2015.
  • Toye, Lysa; editor, writer, publisher of The Butterfly: Connecting SickKids Families Affected by Burn Injuries, biannual issues, 2012 - 2015
  • Toye, Lysa; Griefitti, in Grief and the Expressive Arts: Practices for Creating Meaning. Barbara E. Thompson, Robert A. Neimeyer, ed. Routledge, 2014.
  • Toye, Lysa; The Image Finds Words, in Assessment and Treatment Activities for Children, Adolescents and Families: Practitioners Share their Most Effective Techniques. Liana Lowenstein, ed., Toronto: Champion Press, 2008.
  • Toye, Lysa; Ask the Expert, Inside Sinai Magazine, March 2008 issue (Toronto, March 2008)
  • Toye, Lysa; What Hope Can Mask: Talking to Children about Life-Threatening Illness and Death, in Hot Spot: The Newsletter of the Rapid Response Radiotherapy Program of the Odette Centre, Vol. 9 (4), (Toronto, November 2007)
  • Toye, Lysa; Ann Beam’s Motherline, in ascent magazine, 2, (Montreal, Summer 1999)

Learn More

Feel free to contact me if you would like to inquire about supervision, consultation, teaching, workshop facilitation or writing.