Andrea RakoIndependent Contractor

    Andrea Rako is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with 24+ years of social work experience in the local community. Andrea received her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Social Work from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. Since 1993; Andrea has worked with a variety of different populations; which includes addressing child abuse and neglect in intact families; working with children, teens, and parents in the foster care system; and addressing the unique issues faced at the end of life, as well as providing grief counseling for surviving family members.

    Andrea’s approach to counseling is somewhat eclectic; she has a strong dedication to the social work values of self-determination and meeting the person where they are. Andrea utilizes Solution Focused Brief Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy, Narrative Therapy, and Person in Environment Therapy. Andrea has a strong commitment to helping others achieve what they feel is important to them, focusing on the fact that not everyone has the same beliefs and values; that each person is a unique individual and should be treated with dignity and respect. Andrea believes that the client is the expert on themselves, and that they need to be validated, and approached from a strengths based perspective.

    Andrea and her three teenage children lives in Belleville, IL, with their three rescue dogs. One of the dogs, Dottie, a long- haired dachshund, often accompanies Andrea to facilities to help calm and engage residents in therapy.”