About Us

who we are

We are a team of Paediatric Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists who are experienced in helping children who have developmental delays, learning difficulties, balance and co-ordination difficulties, self esteem and sensory processing challenges, to reach their full potential.


SARAH DEANE  (Occupational Therapist)

Sarah is the founder and owner of The Kids’ Place. She is a NZ registered Occupational Therapist with over 20 years experience. Sarah has spent much of her career working in Paediatrics with children with neurological conditions, brain injuries, developmental delays, and learning difficulties. As a mother of four young adult sons, Sarah understands the challenges of parenting in the modern world. Sarah uses play based therapy and intervention methods to support children who may have learning difficulties, developmental delays, neuro-motor immaturity, gross motor, fine motor, sensory, and emotional difficulties .

Sarah is dedicated to assisting each child to discover their own unique potential, to be understood by the people in their lives, and in the process assist them to develop a healthy self esteem and confidence to enjoy their place in this world.

Sarah has completed post-graduate courses in her areas of interest including:

  • Accreditation to use DIR®Floortime™: a play-based approach used with children focusing on developmental levels, individual differences and relationships.
  • A Certificate in Neuro-Developmental Delay conferred by the Institute of Neuro-Physiological Psychology (INPP), Chester, UK.
  • A Certificate in Bilateral Integration from the Movement and Learning Centre, Scotland, UK.
  • Accreditation as a provider of the Johansen Individualised Auditory Stimulation programme, supporting children with auditory processing difficulties.
  • Sensory Integration Therapy courses including the Wilbarger Sensory Defensiveness Treatment Approach and  Traffic Jam in my Brain ( Sensory Tools, Australia ).


CAMILLA SAXBY (Physiotherapist)

Camilla is a NZ registered Physiotherapist with over 25 years of experience. Camilla has spent much of her career in Paediatrics in both the UK and NZ, and has valuable expertise working with children with developmental delays, hypotonia, motor dyspraxia or developmental coordination difficulties, cerebral palsy, brain injuries, and neuromuscular conditions.

Camilla works through play based therapy and seeks to make therapy time fun and enjoyable. Camilla has two teenage children who keep her active and aware of the ever changing needs and pressures within family life.

Camilla is focused on ensuring each child she works with reach their maximal potential; encouraging and developing their self-esteem and confidence so they can achieve their goals.

Camilla’s has completed many post-graduate training programmes and attended conferences in her area of expertise and interest including;

  • Paediatric Bobath Course ( Bobath Centre, London UK )
  • Workshops Dyspraxia and Co-ordination Difficulties ( Michelle Lee, London. UK )
  • Early Assessment and Intervention for babies and young children ( Bobath Centre, London, UK)
  • Developmental Care ( with Inga Warren, UK)
  • Neuromuscular Conference, Auckland, NZ
  • NZ Pain Society Conference “Pain through the Ages” Auckland, NZ


Jenny Giffen (Occupational Therapist)

Jenny is an Occupational Therapist with over 7 years of experience. Qualifying in the UK she has worked in the UK, America and New Zealand with much of her career being spent in paediatrics. She has worked in both physical and mental health settings and has a wide range of experience which includes working with children on the autistic spectrum, developmental delays, sensory processing difficulties, dyspraxia, learning difficulties, anxiety and trauma. Parenting a child with additional needs herself means that Jenny understands the unique challenges this can bring from a personal as well as a professional perspective.

Jenny understands that children learn best when they are comfortable and therefore makes therapy sessions enjoyable as well as effective working from the unique strengths and interests of each child. She is experienced in supporting children with challenging behaviours and values the child’s emotional health, seeking to nurture self-esteem, confidence and overall wellbeing. As a mum/foster mum to four young boys she understands well the need to meet the needs of the individual child within the context of the family and the wider community (e.g. school) to achieve the best possible outcomes.

Specific areas of interest/further training include

  • Sensory Integration (including the ALERT Program and Wilbarger Therapeutic Brushing technique)
  • Child Development and Trauma (Open Home Foundation)
  • Understanding Challenging Behaviour (Open Home Foundation)
  • Essentials of Praxis (motor planning) Intervention for Children with Autism (The Spiral Foundation)
  • Introduction to Special Education (Brenau University, Atlanta GA)


Charlotte McLauchlan (Occupational Therapist)

Charlotte is a New Zealand Registered Occupational Therapist who has spent much of her career working with adults and children with neurological conditions and children with Autism.  Charlotte has experience as an Occupational Therapist working in a multi disciplinary Paediatric rehabilitation team. She enjoys working with clients and families to support them to overcome challenges with coordination, strength, visual spatial difficulties and a broad spectrum of cognitive difficulties.  She has a friendly and calm approach and has a passion for working with children and their families.
Charlotte enjoys the opportunity to find creative ways to make therapy interesting and fun thereby increasing a childs motivation and engagement to achieve the best results. She also enjoys incorporating the child’s interests into their therapy plan to best help them achieve their individualised goals. She likes to create a safe and nurturing environment where each child is supported to reach their full potential. 
Areas of further training include
  • Cognition in Brain Injury ( Sarah Mather ). Occupational Therapy Australian Conference 2019
  • Visual Dysfunction . Occupational Therapy Australian Conference 2019
  • Wheel chair and Seating Level One


Tina Perenara (Physiotherapist)

Tina is a NZ Registered Physiotherapist who has recently relocated to NZ following time in Australia. Her 17-year career has included working in Paediatrics, Aged Care, Injury Management, Rehabilitation and Return to Work roles.

Tina is passionate about working with children and has a keen interest in neurological, developmental, neuromuscular and orthopaedic conditions. Tina has completed the NZ Paediatric Bobath Course and applies these principles to her daily practise.

Tina is a mother of four children under 10 years old, so is acutely aware of the importance of balancing family life. Her family-centred care approach underpins her goal setting and therapy practise to ensure each child reaches their full potential.