Research & Publications

On this page you can download Pdf documents relating to Academic work completed by Kirsty Bilski, as well as links to other publications:


USW logo.jpg



Call for Sandtray Counsellor Research Participants!


What kinds of change occur in adolescents using sandtray in counselling?

 I am currently recruiting counsellors who work with young people between the ages of 12 and 16 years using sandtray in their counselling process. The overall research project forms 3 distinct stages, this recruitment process is connected to stage 2. The overall project will have taken 5 years to complete and is due to end next year, 2019. This is an exciting opportunity to be involved in furthering the development of our understanding of using sandtray in counselling and psychotherapy with adolescents. Evidenced processes of change, causality and development of adolescent autonomy are all a central focus of this research.

If you are interested, and you meet the participation criteria, you would be invited to complete one semi-structured interview which will take no more than one hour to complete. This may be a face to face meeting, on the telephone or via video conferencing. The interview would be recorded, professionally transcribed and all identifying information removed. If you would prefer not to be recorded then the researcher will take notes instead and create a written record of your responses. Your transcribed interview would then be analysed alongside all the other completed interviews to add a further level of insight to the overall study.


The interview will be an informal discussion. You will not be asked to disclose any identifiable information about you or your clients. You will be asked to explore aspects you notice about the way young people use the sand tray to express their experiences and to identify changes they might make. You will not be asked to talk about whole case studies, however you will be invited to reflect on brief examples of your work which identify specific behaviours or process that you have noticed.

To be considered you would need to be:

·       A Qualified Counsellor.

·       Registered with the BACP or similar professional organisation.

·       Have training in counselling children and young people.

·       Have some CPD training in using sandtray (but have not received training from the researcher: Kirsty Bilski)

·       Working with young people between the ages of 12 and 16 years and using sandtray in their process.

·       Clients can also be using other strategies but sandtray has to be a part of the therapeutic process.

·       You are unfortunately unable to apply if you were a participant in stage 1 of this study.

 As a ‘Thank You’ for your involvement you will be offered a £10 gift voucher on completion of your interview.

If you would like to know more, it would be fantastic to hear from you!

 For further information please contact Kirsty Bilski or Telephone 07971 264251

Lead Researcher and PhD Student

The full study information sheet can be downloaded HERE

Kirsty Bilski is currently completing a 5 year PhD process which is due to end 2020. Further information regarding associated publications will be highlighted here.

Author:  Kirsty Bilski   Foreword by:  Noel Edmonds   Classification:  Autobiography

Kirsty Bilski

Foreword by:
Noel Edmonds


Brief Description: In April 2000, Kirsty Bilski’s life couldn’t have been happier. It was a time of celebration and the start of a new life and brighter future for her and her new husband, Jerzy, together with her three children from her previous marriage, Jessica, Gemma and Stewart. Six months later, however, her family’s world was shaken to its very core when Jessica, at the tender age of ten, was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive form of liver cancer.
This is the heart-rending story of Jessica’s courageous journey through her illness, told through the eyes of her mother, who travelled alongside her daughter every step of the way, refusing to give up hope and guiding her with an incredible honesty that allowed Jessica to make important decisions about her own care, the most harrowing of all coming with the acceptance that she was going to die and that pursuing further treatment was not going to save her.
There are highs, such as family holidays and meeting Myleene Klass, who dedicated her debut album to Jessica’s memory, and there are extreme lows as Jessica, in February 2002, finally loses her fight for life in the beautiful and supportive surroundings of Little Bridge House Children’s Hospice. Jessica was an inspirational child who touched the hearts of many during her short lifetime, and she will continue to do so through this moving tribute

About the Author: As the mother of three beautiful children, Kirsty worked in various administrative roles to support her young family, and in April 2000 the happiness of her family unit was restored when she married for the second time. Six months later, however, this was all snatched away when her eldest daughter, Jessica, became tragically ill and ultimately lost her fight against cancer. The enormity of Kirsty’s loss was overwhelming and writing My Angel Tree has been part of her own healing process. The life-changing experience of losing her daughter made Kirsty determined to make a difference, leading her to return to college as a mature student, where she completed a Foundation Degree and continued to study an Advanced Diploma in Integrative Counselling. She now works with people suffering from emotional turmoil, helping them to make sense of their lives and find their own positive ways forward. Jessica remains her truest inspiration and the experience of her loss is central to her abilities as a counsellor.