IStock 000022059437MediumSomeone to talk to.

Stress and anxiety are part of our daily lives, but what do you do when it gets to be too much?  Professional therapy is one way to work through stress and anxiety, and the therapists in Catholic Charities Counseling Program provide the insight and support needed to manage life problems in a more productive way.

Our licensed, professional therapists work with clients of all faiths and backgrounds to address issues including depression, anxiety, stress, marital issues, relationship problems, child behavior problems, trauma, abuse, and more.  We specialize in treating couples and families, with a focus on observing the patterns among family members and helping each member to make changes in how they relate to one another.

Family Mental Health Plan

Have you considered how prepared you are for mental health needs in your family. Click here to download our Family Mental Health Plan worksheet to guide you through the process!

If you or someone you know are interested in talking with a therapist, contact Catholic Charities Counseling today.

To schedule an appointment in Des Moines:

To schedule in Council Bluffs:

  • call 712-328-3086


You may print and fill out the following forms to bring along to your first appointment.  This will save time when you arrive.  If you have questions about any of the forms, you may call our front desk at 515-237-5045.

Meet Our Therapists

Debrenee Grajeda Debrenee Grajeda, LMSW, PLMHP (Council Bluffs office)

Beginning therapy can feel intimidating, and it’s important to feel at ease and supported by your provider. I believe that therapy should be a partnership based in trust, respect, compassion, and kindness. Using systems theory and a strengths-based approach, I work to understand and empathize with each individual’s unique situation.  Everyone has the ability to grow, change, and heal, and I am committed to helping people navigate life’s challenges.   

I am very passionate about working with survivors of trauma and have extensive experience working with those impacted by domestic violence and sexual abuse in particular. I am also experienced in helping people navigate feelings of grief, anger, and loss, and helping them identify and regulate their emotional responses.  Some of my clinical interests include depression, anxiety, self-harm behaviors, compulsions, and trauma responses/symptoms of PTSD.     

Please feel free to call for more information or to set up an appointment!  Currently providing telehealth and telephonic therapy only. Education: Undergraduate degrees from Hastings College; Master’s degrees from Kansas State University and Sacred Heart University. Currently licensed to practice in Iowa and Nebraska.

Ann Grant therapist







Ann Grant, MA, LMHC (Des Moines office and area schools)

I have been practicing therapy since 1997.  I come to Catholic Charities with a variety of experience from different areas around the country including San Francisco and Kansas City.  I graduated from the University of San Francisco while working at the University of California, San Francisco at San Francisco General Hospital. I am certified in Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for both Children and Adults.  I have a significant experience in working with couples, families (from a system perspective) trauma informed care, transitional issues, and chronically mentally ill.

My approach to therapy is a personable one and I work to understand the underlying causes of current issues to be able to approach an ideal treatment to the symptoms.  The therapeutic relationship is a collaborative one, and together issues can be resolved.

I believe sensory issues can be a benefit to addressing symptoms to assist the client in feeling an increasingly calming sense allowing them to more effectively address issues that are troubling them.

I invite you to contact Stella at today and begin on your journey to a healthier sense of self.

Emily Johnson Emily M. Johnson, MSW, LMSW (Des Moines office and area schools)

My name is Emily M Johnson (she/her), and as a licensed social worker (LMSW), I have over ten years of experience working with adults and families in affordable housing and healthcare. I believe in the dignity of each person and treating others with kindness and compassion. I work to collaborate with clients and believe that every client is the expert on themselves and their needs and that I am here to support and guide you within your current experiences. Working from a strengths-based perspective, I value working with clients from a variety of backgrounds and experiences.
I have experience working with low income, disabled and displaced adults. I have significant experience working with adults with dementia and assisting the geriatric population and their caregivers through the aging process. I have also volunteered with hospice and have worked with many people experiencing depression, anxiety, grief and loss.
I look forward to working with you! Please call to set up an appointment. Currently providing telehealth and telephonic therapy only. Education: Undergraduate degrees in psychology and social work from the University of Iowa; Master’s degree in social work from Washington University in St Louis.
Jill Lawrence Jill Lawrence, LMSW (Des Moines office and area schools)

Do you believe that each person is the expert in their own life? I do! Do you believe that each person has the capacity to change and grow? I do! Targeted support and services, like mindfulness and cognitive behavioral therapies, allow me to customize my approach to each client. Collaborating with each person to enhance their quality of life while struggling with emotional and mental health issues is my passion. I employ an integrative approach, focusing on the relationship between mind, body and spirit.

With twenty years of direct experience serving diverse populations, and a master-level clinical social worker license (LMSW), I am pleased to have received training that included the renowned Family Institute. I have served children, adults, seniors and families. Most recently, I worked with adolescents in crisis, many of whom grapple with long-term trauma. I conduct mental health workshops and look forward to working with children, adults and families.  —Jill Lawrence, LMSW

Call 515-237-5045 or email for an appointment today.

Pat Curran L.I.S.W. Pat Curran, L.I.S.W, (Council Bluffs Office) has been with Catholic Charities in the Council Bluffs office for almost 20 years. She has completed a certificate program through the Meninger Clinic on Marriage and Family Therapy and is a trained sex offender treatment provider.

Call for an appointment today – 712-328-3086