top of page

mental health services

Color Outside The Lines' Mental Health project helps people feel better in their minds, especially if you’re having a hard time because of unfair treatment based on your race or not having enough money. This project lets people talk to a professional who knows a lot about feelings and problems. If you join, you receive 7 private talks with a therapist, at no cost to you.

This project is all about making it easier and cheaper for people to get help when they're feeling down or stressed. We want to show everyone, especially communities of color, that asking for help is not sign of weakness; it's a brave step to feeling better.

In order to qualify for no-cost mental health services through COTL, you must:

  • Belong to one or more of these groups: Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC), or other groups that haven't gotten enough support

  • Identify as a low-to-moderate income resident in the Lehigh Valley Metro Area

  • List a referral contact (caseworker, guidance counselor, manager, doctor, teacher, parent, etc.)

This initiative is made possible thanks to ESSA Bank & Trust. Click the button below to apply for NO COST Mental Health services:

meet our counselors

thumbnail_Yamelisa photo-smaler.jpg

Yamelisa Taveras

Meet Yamelisa J. Taveras, a dedicated professional on the forefront of mental health and substance use disorder treatment. Currently a PhD candidate, Yamelisa holds certifications including ICAADC, ICCS, CAMS-IV, and is a PA Notary Public. As an entrepreneur and humanitarian, she brings a unique blend of compassion and expertise to her work.

Fluent in both Spanish and English, Yamelisa spearheads a bilingual outpatient treatment program specializing in substance use disorder and mental health. Her work is particularly focused on providing Hispanic and other minority populations with essential access to treatment and prevention education for behavioral health issues.

Yamelisa is deeply committed to education, offering early intervention programs to students at elementary, middle, and high school levels. Her mission is clear: to address the growing needs for mental health and substance use disorder education, intervention, and treatment. Through a multidisciplinary and community-focused approach, she aims to serve our underserved and minority communities, making a significant impact in the lives of many.

Jonathan Asayag

Jonathan is a therapist who specializes in assisting individuals as they navigate a variety of challenges, including life transitions, parenting, fatherhood, sexuality, intimacy, and addressing toxic masculinity. He adopts an integrated and holistic approach to psychotherapy, drawing on a diverse range of modalities such as Attachment Theory, Psychodynamic Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Somatic Experiencing, and Mindfulness-Based practices. Jonathan operates through a trauma-informed and culturally sensitive lens and is trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR).

Originally from Lima, Peru, Jonathan is bilingual, fluent in both English and Spanish. As a man of color, he brings a unique perspective to his practice, acknowledging and addressing the various intersections and challenges that come with navigating life from these standpoints. Jonathan is deeply committed to guiding his clients on a journey of self-exploration, healing, and improved well-being.

His areas of specialty include working with trauma, supporting substance use recovery, and addressing anxiety, depression, and life transitions. Jonathan invites those who are ready to embark on a path towards healing and well-being to reach out and begin their journey with him.

thumbnail_Jonathan photo-smaller.jpg
Alphonso photo.jpg

Alphonso Nathan

Alphonso Nathan, known as "Phonz the Therapist," is a distinguished therapist, speaker, author, and advocate for mental health in the Philadelphia area. As the Vice President of Brightside Counseling, LLC, and Co-Owner of Brightside Psychiatric Practice, he has dedicated his career to supporting those in need. Born to Liberian parents who fled to the U.S. during the civil war, Alphonso's upbringing in Staten Island, NY, and his time at Milton Hershey School for underprivileged youth, deeply influenced his desire to make a difference.


Alphonso holds a BA in Psychology from Bloomsburg University and an MA in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Chestnut Hill College. His work spans various specialties, including Depression, Anxiety, Anger Management, Life Coaching, Structural Family Therapy, Autism Spectrum Disorders, and Sports Psychology. Alphonso addresses crucial topics such as cultural appropriation, black trauma and healing, and the importance of mental health investment. He is on a mission to empower black and brown young men, challenging the stigma around mental health. He lives by Pablo Picasso's words, "The meaning of life is to find your gift." You can follow his journey and insights on Instagram and Facebook: @PhonzTheTherapist

Valerie Morales-Kendrick

As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Valerie Morales-Kendrick brings extensive experience to the mental health field, specializing in working with adolescents and adults across diverse age groups. She has a rich background as a case worker in Northampton and Lehigh County, where she successfully connected individuals from various backgrounds with essential resources. Her tenure at Center Street Center in Bethlehem, PA, further honed her skills, providing individual and couples counseling, as well as immigration evaluations.


Currently, Valerie operates her own practice, Kendrick Counseling LLC, in Bethlehem, PA, and serves as a custody evaluator for the Court Conciliation & Evaluation Services program in Bucks County. Her therapeutic approach is person-centered, tailored to meet the unique needs of each client. She employs empathy-driven strategies that empower clients to overcome challenges, fostering resilience and guiding them towards healing and personal growth. For Valerie, helping others is more than a profession—it is a deep-seated passion.


Fluent in both English and Spanish, Valerie Morales Kendrick is a certified clinical trauma professional with specialties in trauma, depression, anxiety, life stressors, divorce mediation, custodial matters, self-esteem issues, domestic violence, and self-harm, among others. Valerie is committed to inclusivity, serving as an ally for the LGBTQ community, immigrants, veterans, and advocating for racial justice.

Valerie Morales Kendrick.JPG
Leah Cofield Headshot.jpg

Leah Cofield

Leah Cofield combines her roles as a therapist, speaker, and mental health advocate to address the intersection of mental health, faith, and culture. Her international and domestic experience enriches her multicultural therapeutic approach. Leah specializes in treating grief, trauma, anxiety, depression, and insecurities, with a special focus on assisting teens and young adults, while recognizing that these challenges do not discriminate.


She employs a blend of cognitive behavioral therapy and somatic techniques to uncover root causes and develop effective coping mechanisms, focusing on the connection between mind and body.


Leah founded Route to Respite, a nonprofit driven by her philosophy of 'Pain for Purpose', to provide a space for empathy, validation, and authenticity. She invites clients to engage fully in their healing journey, offering support while navigating the path to wholeness.

Nikida Capasso, MSW LCSW

Nikida, a licensed clinical social worker with over 15 years of experience, owns a private practice offering comprehensive mental health services to children, adolescents, adults, and families. She draws on her diverse background in child welfare, hospitals, community mental health, and schools to provide effective, trauma-informed care using evidence-based interventions like dialectical behavioral therapy, cognitive processing therapy, trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy, and mindfulness practices.


With both a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Social Work, Nikida emphasizes inner strengths, advocacy, human relationships, and the dignity and worth of every person. Specializing in trauma, attachment, family therapy, mood disorders, and behavior modification, she employs a client-centered, solution-focused approach to empower individuals to make positive life changes and achieve their goals.

20240422_151548 (1).jpg


For questions about our mental health services, please reach out to our Director, Winslow, at

bottom of page