Yozmine Modeste, Counselor
I was born and raised in San Diego, California in supportive and uplifting family. I was raised by a strong African American mother and West Indian father from the island of St. Lucia. I attended UC Riverside for undergrad receiving my BA in Psychology and graduated 2012. I attended graduate school at the City University of New York (C.U.N.Y.), Staten Island and graduated with a M.A. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling in 2016.
I got majority of my counseling experience working in non-profits in school-based setting in both Staten Island and the South Bronx as a social worker. I’ve also worked in Alternative to Incarceration programs around Restorative Justice work and supporting people who have been harmed by crime. I have worked as a counselor with Therapists for Black Girls, based in Brooklyn, as a counselor for over two years.
How can I not care about Black people? I am a Black woman and so proud to be one and be a part of such amazing and resilient culture and community. I just want us to be the best we can be and a big part of that is addressing our trauma. Our trauma effects us daily and we work so hard to ignore it. I want us to normalize feeling and healing in our community. The more we heal the better we equip ourselves for the many battles we face in our society.
I deal with racism by reaching out to my community as well as to my own therapist. My social support is what keeps me going and allows me to face racism head on. Racism NEEDS to be dealt with head on. I refuse to be disempowered by racism. I deserve better. We all do.
I am eclectic when it comes to my healing practices but if I had to choose one that I most enjoy I would say it’s Cognitive Behavioral Therapy or CBT. Although I was not a fan of this practice during my schooling I find that CBT has been the biggest tool in my practice. It engages clients and allows them to be engaging and active in their healing.
Many of my clients have shared with me that I am positive in my approach and positive in their experience of me. I believe in unconditional positive regard when it comes to therapy and enjoy the openness of the process and watching my clients allow themselves to be themselves with me. I prioritize focusing on strengths and positive perspectives. One thing I have found is that, particularly while working with Black Indigenous and other People of Color (BIPOC), we carry so much trauma that it is important that we nurture each other because society seeks to keep us malnourished.
In my spare time I love to garden and caring for my green children.