Joakim Appell

As a mentor in the Compassionate Inquiry Training I’ve undergone extensive training in this modality and have a deep understanding of the principles and techniques involved.

No matter if you’re in the year-long training, mentorship or certifying/recertifying my aim for us is to co-create a safe and supportive space where we can explore first your intention and then possibly potential emotional and mental blocks that might prevent you as a therapist from fully engaging with your inner selves and be present in sessions and to yourself. Both individuals as well as groups are welcome.

The body, brain and mind aligned together hold the answer and the capacity to heal from trauma.


Email: [email protected]

Priya Duggal

Private Mentor, Naturopathic Doctor

As a Compasionate Inquiry Mentor, my intention is to support you towards Compassionate Inquiry Certification and in enhancing your understanding of CI skills and processes. My supervision style is collaborative, supervisee-centered, with safety and mutual trust being of utmost importance. I intend to meet you where you are in your CI learning curve.

I consider Compassionate Inquiry my “IKIGAI” – a Japanese concept referring to something that gives a person a sense of purpose, or brings joy. I am passionate to help others live their authentic life as I, myself, continue in this pursuit. I consider myself fortunate to have an opportunity to practice my passion in different roles as a Ci practitioner, Ci facilitator, Ci educator, Ci circle leader and Ci mentor.


Location: Vaughan, ON. Canada
Email: [email protected]

Ildiko Acs

Mental Health Practitioner

Ildi has twenty years of experience in Human Resources in the corporate world. Her unhealthy attachment to work and her commitment to understand her own destructive behaviors led her to CI, where she was looking for answers until discovering her authentic self with the support of the caring and compassionate CI community. Her biggest challenge was self-compassion and be aware of her own suffer in which the CI approach was transformational for her as CI turned her focus inward, and she was able to notice her thoughts, feelings, sensations in a non-judgmental and curious way.


Location: Budapest, Hungary

Natalia Sotomayor (Sanjog Kaur)

Private Mentor, Life Coach
My first encounter with the work of Dr. Gabor Maté was in 2012 through the Beyond Addiction program. As a person who struggled with an eating disorder since my early teenage years, Gabor’s work gave me resources to approach the symptoms of my ED from a place of compassion, understanding and possibility, something I had not encountered in any of the other healing approaches that I had tried. The deep healing I experienced with everything I was learning in Beyond Addiction encouraged me to continue exploring this work, leading me to become a CI Practitioner in 2019, and a CI Facilitator shortly after. I currently dedicate my life to offering group and individual therapy. I’m also the Director of the CI programs in Spanish, a kundalini yoga teacher and practitioner, and a passionate researcher of ways in which this approach can be adapted to diverse cultural backgrounds. From a professional perspective, I have a background in Anthropology and Gender Studies, and have trained in Art Therapy foundations, Brainspotting and IFS.


Location: Quito, Ecuador
Email: [email protected]

Vimalasara (Valerie) Mason-John

Private Mentor, Life Coach

Dr Valerie (Vimalasara) Mason-John M.A (hon.doc) is an award-winning author of 8 books, including her debut fictional memoir novel, Borrowed Body, and Detox Your Heart, Meditations for Emotional Trauma, and Eight Step Recovery Using The Buddha’s Teachings to Overcome Addiction. She is a co-founder of the secular 8-week course Mindfulness-Based Addiction Recovery MBAR and is one of the new leading African Descent Voices in the field of Mindfulness Approaches for Addiction. She is the current president of the international organization Buddhist Recovery Network, which promotes Mindfulness and Buddhism as a complementary approach working with addiction, craving, recovery, harm reduction and abstinence. Valerie has been working in the field of inquiry over the past 15 years, as a trainer in conflict resolution and restorative justice, and as a guide with Liberation Unleashed, and a mentor in Direct Pointing. She lives in British Columbia.

Location: Gibsons, British Columbia, Canada
Email: [email protected]

Sheila Tyacke (Siri Dharma)

Private Mentor, Lawyer
Sheila is a certified Compassionate Inquiry practitioner.  She has been a facilitator of the online training since its inception in 2019.  She co-leads the Safety and Connection course that is part of the online training, where the focus is on creating safety in Compassionate Inquiry sessions. Sheila and Vimalasara Mason-John are the officers in the Integrity and Equality Office, where their function is to be part of resolving any disputes or conflicts that may arise in the context of the training.   Sheila is trained as a lawyer and is an accredited mediator with the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) in the United Kingdom. She teaches Kundalini Yoga for addiction recovery in South Africa when she isn’t occupied with training and mentoring young lawyers.  She has training in Family Life counselling and Addiction counselling and is the lead trainer in South Africa of the Beyond Addiction program.  She has training in nonviolent communication.  Sheila considers herself a highly-sensitive person and has a deep interest in ensuring that highly sensitive people are welcomed and safely held in the online training course as well as in private mentoring sessions. 

Location: Johannesburg, 2196, South Africa
Email: [email protected]

Rhonda Nelson

Private Mentor, Master Practitioner in Clinical Counseling, Qualified Clinical Supervisor

My intention as a Compassionate Inquiry Mentor is to support you toward Compassionate Inquiry Certification and/or in deepening and expanding your knowledge and experience with Compassionate Inquiry competencies. My approach is person-centered and aligns with the qualities inherent in reflective supervision. The process is intended to support and inform your work both personally and professionally. I am a Registered Professional Counselor (RPC), Master Practitioner in Clinical Counseling (MPCC), and Qualified Clinical Supervisor (MPCC-S) to professionals in private practice in and outside of CI. I am a CI Founding Facilitator, Mentor in the CI Mentorship Program and in Private Practice, Certification Reviewer, and Plant Medicine Integration Specialist.

In 2014 I came across the work of Dr. Gabor Maté with an intention to enhance my professional work as an addictions counselor. In the process I found myself experiencing a deep movement of emotional healing and I was profoundly impacted. With my curiosity peaked I began a dedicated self-exploration using Gabor’s books, teachings, and recommended readings. I later attended a plant medicine retreat led by Gabor that was well supported therapeutically by the Compassionate Inquiry approach, which at that time was simply referred to as “Gabor-Style”. This integrated process supported me to drop deeper into the wisdom of my body and, gratefully, it led to further physical, mental, and emotional transformation and well-being. In 2017, I joined Gabor’s original team of plant medicine practitioners abroad to support retreat participants in processing and integration and utilized CI as the foundation upon which I worked.

Over the years I’ve organized various events with Gabor as guest speaker, including co-hosting the second in-person Compassionate Inquiry Workshop. My passion for this work led me to accept an invitation as a CI Founding Facilitator and support the development and establishment of the CI Course and Programs. Along with my roles as CI Mentor and Clinical Supervisor to practitioners in private practice, I am certified in the Basics in Clinical Supervision Training with Dr. Jeff Chang, all of which support my use of best practices.

Connecting to my roots as an addictions counselor, I co-led and co-authored a province-wide (Alberta, Canada) research project on addiction in Mothers, Addiction, and Recovery; Finding Meaning through the Journey, Edited by Peterson, W, Armstrong, L, and Foulkes, M.

My love for writing extends personally as I regularly meet with a group of free-writing enthusiasts. My hobbies include walking with my husband and our dog along the ocean and in the forest, reading, journaling, music, and songwriting. I live in Vancouver, BC, Canada.

Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Email: [email protected]

Varduhi Torosyan

Private Mentor, Psychologist

As a CI Mentor, I will be working with you to support your CI competency development on a continuum, and directly and indirectly improve session effectiveness.

My philosophy of mentoring is mentee-centered based on a mentor-mentee  relationship as a safe container where professional and personal development is possible in the presence of trust and compassion.  

My journey with Compassionate Inquiry began in 2019. Currently I am a CI Mentor, CI Circle Leader and CI Practitioner. I am the founder of “My Family” psychological research NGO.  After getting MA degrees in Applied linguistics and Pedagogy, I completed post-graduate study in Applied Psychology at YSU. 

I have completed a Basics in Clinical Supervision Training, online with Dr. Jeff Chang and CI Mentoring Internship program preparing myself to mentor others.

I live with my husband and three amazing kids in Yerevan, Armenia. 

Location: Yerevan, Armenia
Email: [email protected]

Steve Borloz

Private Mentor, Yoga Teacher

Hi, I’m Steve.

My own journey of self-discovery started in 2012, however I only came across Gabor’s work in 2016 when I read his book, ‘In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts.

His life changing approach to mental illnesses and addiction planted a seed which has only grown through the years. Thanks to this work, I’ve realised that we all encounter different copying mechanisms throughout our lives, which has helped to inform my own practice of self-discovery and helping others.


Location: Nendaz, Switzerland
Email: [email protected]

Stephen Brown

Private Mentor

My intention is to support you as your learning, understanding, and practice of Compassionate Inquiry evolves and expands.

I have been following Dr Gabor Mate’s work since 2016 and was delighted to attend a two-day conference with him in Cork 2018. For more than 25 years I have worked with people, primarily in group settings utilising the natural environment and outdoor activities. I have spent many years working with young people at risk, young and adult offenders, and those who wished to bring about change in their life. I provide empowering experiences such as Firewalking, retreats in the Sahara Desert and Bali, and opportunities for connection with Self, community, and nature; and people were benefitting. However, I was aware that people wanted to go deeper, understand themselves better, and heal. When I saw Gabor working with people, I instantly knew that I wanted to learn more from him and share that with the people I was working with. It was like I had just found the missing jigsaw piece. I was delighted to join the Compassionate Inquiry programme in 2019, certify as a Compassionate Inquiry practitioner, and now serve as a mentor.


Location: Newcastle, UK
Email: [email protected]