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Lyla Smith-Abass

Counselling | NTU™ Psychotherapy | Therapeutic Theatre | Artistic Activism



Lyla holds a Post Graduate Diploma (PGdip.) in Dramatherapy, a Higher Professional Diploma in Person Centred Counselling (HPDip.) and is a Certified NTU™ Psychotherapist. She is currently self employed having worked for many years within schools, the NHS, community centres and with individuals and groups offering mental and emotional support through counselling, cognitive behaviourial therapy and theatre. She is a member of the BACP and BAATN.


Recent training has been with the Nubia Wellness and Healing Centre (UK) and the Progressive Life Centre (USA).









Both organisations have a strong focus on Afrikan-Centred therapeutic practice with lectures facilitated by distinguished psychologists in Afrikan psychology. Alongside her person-centred practice, she provides decolonised Afrikan-Centred therapy.

She has worked as a therapist for over 21 years during which time she has merged her clinical experience with her experience of working in the theatre. She has created therapeutic theatre programmes and written theatrical plays which she uses for education, raising self awareness, healing and for social change within the community.


Lyla has extensive experience within the field of domestic abuse. She was Project Manager and Lead Clinician for TRYangle Project’s domestic abuse perpetrator programme for many years before going on to train as an ISVA (Independent Sexual Violence Advocate) to add to her skill set.

In her self care time she enjoys acting, writing plays and poetry, listening to audio books, being with family and travelling as well as other activities.




NTU is a Bantu (Central Afrikan) concept that means "essence”.  It is a universal energy running through all of existence. It is referred to by many names in different cultures, e.g. prana, chi, life force etc.  

In Afrikan focussed Psychotherapy we understand that NTU can be increased or decreased depending on one's thoughts and/or behaviours.  When NTU increases in an individual, family or community, then health and well-being increases.  When it decreases, health and well-being declines.  

NTU is a lifestyle.  The NTU therapist understands this and therefore works with the connection between the body, mind and spirit, supporting individuals, families and communities to achieve optimal mental health through the attention and care given to body, mind and spirit during NTUtherapy.

Adapted from: Gregory, H., & Harper, K. (2001) The NTU Approach to Health and Healing,  Journal of Black Psychology, 27(3), 304-320.

Dr. Erica Mapule McInnis
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