Sasha von Varga is the founder of Collaborators, Inc., an organization dedicated to the emotional well-being of children, teens, adults, and families through collaboration. Individuals and families thrive when the roles and expectations of the individual and group are clear and mutually understood. In the modern world, finding the 'right' way to communicate ideas and assert one's self is a challenge and involves risk. When the risks and benefits are seen as shared, and as an opportunity for change and growth, that's the space where new relationships and new choices flourish.
Sasha has been a provider of mental health services for children, adults, and families on the North Shore of Chicago for over 23 years. Sasha trained in diverse psychiatric hospital settings and in community based mental health clinical settings as a child therapist and generalist practitioner. He worked for 7 years in a therapeutic day school setting serving children who could not learn effectively in a regular educational setting due to significant emotional distress. In 1999, Sasha established a clinical practice focusing on children and adolescents experiencing anxiety and mood disorders, attention issues, communication problems, personality issues, as well as difficult transitions and adjustments related to learning disabilities, to environmental experiences like school changes, frequent moves, and experiential issues related to chronic illness, behavioral challenges, divorce, and family conflict. Over the years, Sasha has worked closely with parents and schools in developing relationships with children that are supportive and maximize the strengths of each child in the uniqueness of their circumstances.
In 2000, after working with many children and families who had undergone highly conflictual and challenging divorces, Sasha decided to pursue advanced training in divorce mediation to help families navigate the challenges of divorce in a non-contentious pro-active manner. He worked to help parents develop parenting and financial agreements that would provide durable and reliable relationship expectations of parents who were separating who could plan for the ongoing needs of their families.
In 2010, Sasha discovered Collaborative Law, a model for divorce that provides a support team of highly trained professionals to guide parents through a private, and expedient and potentially cost-saving process unlike traditional litigation that helps parents address issues that NO TRADITIONAL DIVORCE PROCESS ever addresses. Collaborative Divorce at its best challenges parents to project forward in time as they face life altering decisions about how to care for an evolving definition of family with a sense of unity of purpose and commitment to a successful divorce that attends to the needs of the children.
Sasha is a Fellow of the Collaborative Law Institute of Illinois (CLII), a member of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), and a member of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC). Sasha is active on CLII’s Excellence and Best Practices Committee and Interdisciplinary Training faculty and Education Committee, providing education to attorneys, financial neutrals, and mental health practitioners about the practice of the collaborative divorce model in Illinois. Sasha adheres to the practice standards of the International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP).