New Destrehan counseling practice offers summer counseling groups for local children

New counseling clinic Guided Growth Counseling LLC in Destrehan recently began offering local parents a new kind of summer activity – kid-oriented counseling groups, aimed at helping St. Charles Parish children improve social skills.

“Working at a school, I’ve noticed and some of my colleagues have as well, kids are lacking in social skills over the past few years,” Owner and counselor Kaitlyn Hay said. “There are many factors that could go into this, but our goal is to aid kids in having the necessary social skills they need.”

Guided Growth Counseling’s various kid-friendly summer programs help St. Charles Parish kids develop skills in areas such as empathy, friendship, active listening, teamwork, problem solving and other areas. Hay says Guided Growth Counseling divides its groups by age: Its Social Superheroes group is geared for 4- to 6-year-olds, Mingle Makers targets ages seven thru nine, Simply Social designed for ages 10 thru 12, while its Social Connections group focus on serving local teenagers.

“These groups are great for kids who struggle with making or keeping friends, or who are uncomfortable in social situations,” Hay explained.

Hay and the Guided Growth also have developed their Worry Warriors and Calm Collectors groups, designed to help kids who may worry a lot or have been diagnosed with anxiety. Hay is currently in the process of developing additional types of groups to help local kids and hopes to have more groups available possibly during the school year for active kids that have sports, camps, and other busy summer schedules.

“Now, we are getting requests for different types of groups…I’m in the process of developing those groups and determining what they could look like,” Hay said. “The response has been so positive and I’m truly excited to keep offering different things.”

Hay offers her services as a licensed professional counselor with a masters degree in counseling.  After growing up in Destrehan and completing her post-secondary education, she began working as both a school counselor as well as an adjunct professor at the University of Holy Cross. Hay returned in the spring this year to St. Charles Parish to open her own counseling practice. She officially began seeing clients first virtually in March then in-person in April.

“I wanted to open this practice here because I saw the need, and wanted to give something back to this community,” Hay said of her new counseling service. “I kept hearing so many people here telling me that they were tired of going to Metairie for therapy, or that the waitlist was too long…everyone was either on a waitlist or having to go into Metairie or New Orleans, or they were seeing someone virtual and not always enjoying the experience.”

While Hay’s practice began offering numerous kid-focused summer programs this year, her private practice is geared towards individuals, groups and families of all ages.

For more information on Kaitlyn Hay and her new counseling practice, Guided Growth Counseling, LLC, visit her at or on her business’ Facebook page.


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