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Community Highlights: Meet Marshella Gore LPCA, NCC of Mind Your M.I.N.D Counseling and Consulting

Today we’d like to introduce you to Marshella Gore Licensed Professional Counselor Associate and National Certified Counselor.

Hi Marshella, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today.
I grew up in a small rural area in North Carolina and was raised primarily by my mom and my grandmother. I was the third oldest child, and the oldest girl, out of my five siblings. Growing up, I was always detail-oriented and the kid that asked a thousand whys, to get the full understanding of something.

I’ve always used my voice and early on knew that I wanted to be a change agent in my community. It wasn’t until I was in middle school after witnessing firsthand racial disparities and injustices in my community, that I realized the need for advocacy for African Americans in the legal system and I decided to pursue the path of criminal justice reform.

In my junior year of college, the unthinkable happened. We lost my 26-year-old brother “Fon” to gun violence.  It was devastating and heart-wrenching. I ended up graduating with a Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice, however, my passion was no longer there. Operating from a place of hurt and trauma related to the loss of my brother, I gave up on pursuing criminal justice reform.

I moved back home after graduating college and landed a job working in the mental health field with children diagnosed with mental illnesses with a history of trauma. It was while working in this season, that I developed a passion for the mental health field and working with people that had experienced trauma.

I worked for over ten years with children and families in underserved rural communities with limited access to mental health care, providing community support services. After marrying my college sweetheart, who was serving in the USAF, our first duty station was Okinawa Japan. Stationed there for almost three years, I continued my work with children and families.

While in Japan, I worked for the federal government in the school system on the military base. This season of my life allowed me the privilege to work with a diverse group of individuals including military families with children that had disabilities. I also worked privately providing mentoring services to teenagers that focused on improving self-confidence, setting healthy boundaries, and maintaining healthy relationships.

Throughout my years in the human service field, I was able to connect with many people and make a positive impact on their lives. Following Japan, we got stationed in Charleston South Carolina. The culture and history of Charleston won our hearts and we decided to plant roots and make Charleston home.

Continuing my work with children and families, I worked as a court-appointed children’s advocate and program coordinator for the South Carolina Guardian Ad Litem Program. For nearly five years, I was the voice of hundreds of children in family court proceedings that had been abused and/or neglected, separated from their families, and had DSS involvement.

In this season of my life, I recognized my true calling. Although I was able to advocate for permanent living situations for hundreds of children and adolescents across South Carolina, I felt the need to do more. All the individuals that I advocated for had been subjected to some type of childhood abuse or neglect and struggled with communication, regulating their emotions, and adapting to the changes in their lives.

I witnessed how trauma impacted their ability to reach their full potential in different areas of their lives. At that moment I decided that I wanted to do more. I wanted to help people heal and grow, so I decided to pursue my Master’s in Mental Health Counseling.

I graduated from Capella University with distinction with a Master’s of Science in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and passed the National Clinical Mental Health Certification Exam. Here I am now a Licensed Professional Counselor Associate with a private practice. Like they say in the movies, the rest is history!

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall, and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I wouldn’t say the road was smooth at all. As a first-generation undergraduate and master’s level graduate in my family, I traveled unfamiliar territory on my journey to where I am now. I have weathered many storms and many tests.  All of which made me wiser, stronger, resilient, and ambitious. 

I think my past biggest challenge was allowing myself to be vulnerable enough to give myself full permission to embrace my past hardships and trauma.  Overcoming the shame and embarrassment about it and accepting it, healing from it, and allowing myself to grow from it. My strength was birthed out of my past hurts and pain.

My character, passion, ambition, heart, and spirit are all products of my past hardships.

The road has been curvy, but every single crack and turn was preparing me for this season of my life. One of my favorite quotes is “One day you will tell your story of how you overcame what you went through, and it will be someone else’s survival guide” (unknown).

As you know, we’re big fans of Mind Your M.I.N.D Counseling and Consulting, LLC. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about the brand?
I’m a Licensed Mental Health Counselor Associate and National Certified Counselor, here in beautiful South Carolina. I founded Mind Your M.I.N.D Counseling and Consulting LLC., after working for more than ten years in the human service field in underserved communities.

M.I.N.D is the acronym for learning to live Mindfully, Intentionally, and Nonjudgmentally, Discovering your true authentic self, gifts, and purpose. At MYMCC, I provide individual and family therapy services specializing in trauma, grief, and loss.  I offer wellness coaching with a holistic approach to wellness assisting individuals that may be experiencing challenges with life transitions, relationships, or job changes.

What makes MYMCC stand out from others, is that I don’t present with just education and a diverse work experience, but I also present with lived life experiences that influence my approach and ability to connect to my clients.

As a survivor of a victim of homicide, a wife of a combat veteran with PTSD, and a history of childhood trauma, I can attest to how trauma can impact a person’s life in many ways. I am a true testimony of “turning lemons into lemonade”. I was privileged to be exposed to mental wellness through my profession and education opportunities.

Sadly, in the African American community mental health care and asking for help haven’t been embraced, so awareness and education are a part of my core values. To destigmatize and bring a feeling of normalcy to mental health services, I offer learning experiences including workshops, seminars, webinars, and training to community organizations, churches, and educational institutions on a variety of mental health topics and treatments.

I currently serve as the mental health therapist for the Bradley Blake Foundation’s BSB Safe Haven Homicide Support Group, where we provide a space for survivors of homicide to share, listen, and link with others that share that loss.

Before we go, is there anything else you can share with us?
I am a woman God and give all praise and honor to him for blessing me with the gift to counsel and touch others’ lives in a positive way.

I am a proud wife of 13 years to a combat veteran, Terrence, and mother of a brilliant 8-year-old daughter, Bella, and 4-year-old identical twin sons, Noah, and Abel.

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Image Credits

Lamar Borius Photography+Design

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