About us

About the Institute of Family Therapy

The Institute of Family Therapy is the leading training organisation for systemic practice in the UK. We are highly respected in the field and have a firmly established national and international reputation for high standards and excellence.

The Institute of Family Therapy (IFT) is a charitable independent body established in 1977.


Longer training is structured to meet the requirements of the association for Family Therapy’s ‘Blue Book’ accreditation framework for foundation and intermediate courses. All IFT agency based training is tailored to the agency context.

For over 40 years we have been helping professionals  to prevent family breakdown and to enhance family strengths through:

  • Training opportunities, from one day workshops and conferences to extended courses
  • Provision of courses from beginner to supervision and management.
  •  An extensive agency based training portfolio delivered to social care agencies throughout the UK
  • Consultation to professionals and organisations.
  • Therapy and counselling for children, families and couples through our clinical services.


The Institute of Family Therapy (IFT) is an independent charitable body established in 1977 for the purpose of promoting and developing systemic practice in the UK.  As such we have led the field for over 40 years and have pioneered much of the practice and research development in family therapy. In addition to our solid foundation training, we are unique in the country in having the only Child Focused Systemic Practice course which focuses specifically on the meaningful engagement of children in family work.

In these times of uncertainty and radical change in our society the skills and theoretical ideas taught in systemic practice are more important than ever. They have wide application and will enhance your ability to work creatively in complex, challenging and unusual situations. Applications of systemic practice are widely used in health, social care and voluntary settings.

Although we are a small central team we recruit and employ teachers and trainers for all our courses who have the highest professional standards and knowledge.  Our programme of continuing professional development is second to none, presenting workshops from nationally and internationally recognised writers and experts in the field.

Issues We Regularly Work With

Training with the Institute gives you:

  • A solid set of tools and theories with immediate practical applicability;
  • Self-reflective and relationally reflective abilities to change and grow on a path of life-long learning.
  • A supportive learning environment;
  • Trainings accredited by the Association for Family Therapy and therefore portable to further training

All of our courses focus on three key areas:

  • Practice – the development of skills of engagement, permission seeking, enhancing empathy and cooperation that are goal directed and useful for clients.
  • Theory – this includes both core systemic and social constructionist theory and the integration of key theory from other fields, including but not restricted to attachment, neurobiology, trauma theory and learning theory.
  • Self and relational reflexivity – the development of the person of the practitioner.  Attention is given to the growth and development of the practitioner.  In particular we train people to be aware of the impact of themselves on the system with which they are working and to use feedback to co-create collaborative, transparent, meaningful relationships within which change can be generated.


You will develop unique thinking in relation to how you approach your own work and practice. Many participants who have completed  our courses comment on the profound changes they have undergone in the way they view the world.

Our Team

The Institute of Family Therapy is committed to a policy of equality and the elimination of discrimination in all aspects of its work, whether in relation to race, colour, ethnic origin, disability, gender, age, sexual orientation, marital status, culture, nationality or class.

It recognises diversity of family forms and the different ways in which people choose to form relationships. IFT is opposed to any discrimination or prejudice either by word or conduct on the part of any Member or the Institute or its administration, or persons using its premises.

Taiwo Afuape


sumita dutta


rachel watson

projects lead

nana bonsu

leadership & management lead

Eugene Michalovic

Financial Audit & Operations Lead

Robyn Galloway

Senior Business support Manager

Joanne Jackson

Lead for Quality, Culture & Development


Admin and Business Support

nishat ahmed

Course administrator

alice craven

Course Administrator

melody king

Course Administrator

reneé brown

Clinical Services Administrator