Our Directors

Company Director, Amanda Marston, began her professional counselling career with women’s crisis centres and in private practice in the UK during the 1990s, before migrating to Western Australia in 2006 where she continued practising in Perth, with regular FIFO to remote regions of Western Australia.

Amanda moved to central Australia early in 2015, taking a managerial role for a local Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provider before establishing her own practice, Desert Minds Pty Ltd, in May 2020.

Amanda is a qualified psychotherapist registered with the Australian Counselling Association (ACA), NMAS accredited Mediator (RI reg.), Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner (AGD reg.), Eye Movement Desensitisation & Reprocessing (EMDR) Therapist (EMDRAA reg.), and Trainer (Cert IV Training & Assessment).

Director Sivan Debeljakovic has transitioned from a 40-year career in marketing, communications, and graphic design to become the Business Manager for Desert Minds Pty Ltd. Sivan has extensive experience working in both private enterprise and government environments, and today manages the practice’s administration, governance, and compliance requirements.

Our Mission

Located in Central Australia, for Central Australians

Whilst Desert Minds is a Proprietary Limited company and therefore a for-profit business, our Directors do not seek global or national commercial expansion, preferring to focus their efforts on providing a quality counselling service to working residents and local organisations in the Northern Territory (NT).

We live in the NT, our Practice Team members live in the NT, and each has resided in the Territory for either a long term, or entirely. We understand the unique challenges faced by those living and working here, and our shared knowledge and insights serve to contribute to the best possible client care.

We support those who support others.

That is, anyone working in frontline, first-responder, and community-facing roles, such as health and medical staff, teachers, police, paramedics, community and case workers, NDIS participants and carers, and our peers in the mental health field. That covers just about everyone!

Our Desert Minds business model doesn’t conform to most private for-profit enterprises in that it acts like a Cooperative and thinks like a Collective, with the goal to provide the best possible, ethical and informed mental health support for Territorians.

While the goal of private companies is to generate profits for their directors, the priority of a Cooperative is to share profits with members over the long term and reward them well for their expertise, knowledge, and dedication to the collective goal. Maintaining a resident Practice Team offers in-person availability and superior continuity of care to our clients in central Australia.

Hence, our business model prioritises the needs of our Practice Team members too, as they have close proximity to and intimate knowledge of our region's unique challenges, and adhere to a strong set of social values that benefit their clients, and in turn their client's homes, workplaces, and communities.

Each Practice Team member is a Territory-based sole trader, sub-contracted to Desert Minds for their unique skill-set, local knowledge and experience, to deliver expert client support via our Employee Assistance Program (EAP) services.

Simply said, our Practice Team are locally-focussed professionals who are passionate about seeing the Territory thrive. With our business model, this ensures that a return on an organisation’s EAP investment with Desert Minds Pty Ltd goes directly back into the Northern Territory economy.

What we’re saying is, we’re here for you.