Leadership Team

Melissa Wijngaarde, MSW, LCSW

Clinical Director of Child First

Melissa Wijngaarde is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and is the Clinical Director of Families First’s Child First Program. Melissa has expertise in the field of infant mental health, early intervention, and child parent psychotherapy. Melissa has recently come to Families First after 15 years at the University of Miami’s Linda Ray Intervention Center where her work focused on Child Parent Psychotherapy as a treatment provider, supervisor, and trainer within the Dependency Court system. While at the University of Miami, Melissa collaborated on the Miami Child Well-Being Court™ model which focused on addressing the relational, emotional, developmental and mental health needs of infants and toddlers in care. Melissa is a Zero to Three DC:0-5 Trainer and over the past 5 years has conducted trainings all over the state of Florida for clinicians and parent educators on Infant Mental Health, specifically the areas of behavioral observation, assessment with children under 5, early intervention, and social emotional development.   Melissa practices reflective supervision and is a qualified supervisor in the state of Florida.