Best of Lawrence Profile: Raven Rajani, LSCSW believes in a holistic and inclusive approach to find one’s highest good

Shakti, a Staffordshire Terrier and certified therapy dog is also a Best of Lawrence top 5 winner.

Editor’s Note: This article is sponsored content produced by the Journal-World’s advertising department. Businesses who received a top three award in the Best of Lawrence competition are eligible to participate in the Best of Lawrence Spotlight Series program, which includes a question-and-answer profile. Look for future profiles in the print and online editions of the Journal-World.

Congratulations on being voted the “Best of Lawrence”! How does it feel to receive this recognition from the community?

Being voted the No.1 Mental Health Provider in the Best of Lawrence in both 2022 and 2023 rendered me speechless twice (and that is uncommon for me)! The recognition is a true honor, and I am humbled by all who took the time to extend a vote my way. It means the world to me to know that the community recognizes and appreciates me and heart-healing work I do.

Raven Rajani, LSCSW pictured outside her practice near downtown.

What do you believe sets your business apart?

As a mental health provider, I strive to meet everyone I work with exactly where they are. Each person is unique and multidimensional, and their lives and well-being are shaped and influenced by physical, psychological, emotional, social, and spiritual conditions. I aim to cultivate a more comprehensive, holistic approach, personally tailored to address the dynamic elements of each person and their life experiences as pieces of a larger puzzle. My approach is inclusive and welcomes each person’s unique journey of self-exploration, growth, expansion, and introspection. I offer a safe space to express, share, process, heal and grow.

Additionally, I have always incorporated the use of my certified therapy dog(s) in my practice. After completing graduate school at KU, I furthered my education and understanding of the human-animal bond and attended the Institute for Human-Animal Connection through the University of Denver. There, I learned how to utilize and incorporate therapeutic human-animal interactions and interventions in my practice that support therapeutic treatment goals. Shakti, my first certified therapy dog (and a BEST of LAWRENCE winner!) has been not only the finest ambassador for her breed (Staffordshire Terrier), but she has worked by my side with grace and poise and a relentless sense of understanding and connection for the past nine years. I have the best co-workers: Shakti, Brahma (medically retired), Walter WoooWooo, Durango, and Gertie share in the healing journeys of many.

Can you provide a brief overview of your business’s history, including its founding, initial goals and how it has evolved over the years?

I received my master’s degree in social welfare from the University of Kansas in 2014, and set out to make the world a softer, better, kinder place. In 2015, I went into private practice, and over the years, I have worked in various roles and with many different groups of people. I’ve worked with older adults in life transitions, low-income populations struggling to attain basic daily needs, teens and adults challenged by addiction of all kind and trauma histories, people enduring severe mental illness diagnoses in inpatient (and outpatient) hospital settings and well as asylum seekers trying to escape further trauma and harm – people from all walks of life, grappling with the most challenging life (and death) circumstances. These courageous humans have been my teachers and I have been immensely privileged to journey alongside them during their darkest moments.

How has your business evolved or grown since you first started? What key milestones have you achieved along the way?

My private practice has always kept me remarkably busy, and after navigating the trenches of Covid, I quickly recognized that there was no way I could ‘do it all’ and keep up with the service demand. In 2022, I formed a mental health practice group, Integrative Therapy Services, to meet the mental health needs of our community (and beyond). Integrative Therapy Services is an eclectic group of twelve practitioners (and growing!) who believe that healing, growth, expansion, and wellness should not be limited to a ‘one size fits all’ treatment approach so often seen. Instead, our holistic and inclusive approach honors and welcomes each person’s unique journey of self-exploration. We aim to inspire, motivate, and educate on healthier habits that support one’s highest good. The providers have specialized training in Complex trauma, Sex trauma, Depression, Anxiety, ADHD, specialized Children’s therapy, Art therapy, play therapy, Addiction, Autism Spectrum Disorder, PTSD/Acute Stress, Self-Esteem, Confidence, Boundaries and Allied services for LGBTQ+ community (identity and affirmation) as well as the under-served.

Community support is crucial. How do you engage with the local community, and how has this engagement impacted your success?

My life has been one of service, and my motto has always been: ‘Do Good Things. Be The Change.’ While in my clinical year of Graduate School, I founded a local non-profit organization, Loving Paws Animal Therapy Association. Loving Paws is an animal therapy program that promotes the human-animal bond using certified therapy dogs and provides positive support, enhancing the quality of life for vulnerable populations and those in need throughout Douglas County. We currently have 32 certified volunteer teams who generously give of their time and share their amazing therapy dogs in a variety of facilities and organizations.

What do you believe has been the biggest contributor to your business’s growth and reputation in the Lawrence area?

I believe that a contributing factor to the growth of my practice and reputation is my unwavering commitment to those I serve. I strive daily to go above and beyond, and I meet each client with my full attention, validation, compassion and empathy, and empowering energy. My clients are a priority, and they know it. I show up every day with a commitment to each, and I do so with honesty and integrity.

Something I remind myself and work to live by daily: “This world is not about perfection, but about becoming the messy, beautiful being you are, and sharing that person with the world. Because honestly, it’s not about what we can gain, but what we can give. It’s not about the material possessions we own or riches we store up, but the way we can bless one another and be content with right where we are, with what we have. It’s not about grabbing everything we can selfishly, but learning, letting go, growing and finding moments to celebrate, even when the road gets tough.”


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