Directors Update June 2020

Welcome to our new website! We are very excited to have this up and running and hope it will make all our communications easier and smoother. We hope you enjoy using it, and that we will see you here often.

‘No meaning without context…’

It is a turbulent time. IFT has a long history of systemic training and practice where we have continued to try to understand and make visible how different contexts influence relationships: how power differentials and structural inequalities impact. We never stop learning, and right now we are reminded of our pledge to oppose racism and hate, to learn, to unlearn, to make space for listening, to stand in solidarity with those who experience oppression in all its forms. We need to act in ways that will ensure change, not just for now, but change that is sustained into the future. IFT is committed to continued dialogue that helps us to know how to act, and we will be creating spaces for members, students, and staff to work together to be invited to help shape our organisation, in our practice and through all our trainings, with love, respect and courage.


Lockdown continues to present challenges for all of us. We have needed all of our systemic thinking, and tools, to make sense of our tasks and relationships in this context, and continue on together. We keep on keeping on! Our team, students, trainers, supervisors, tutors, have all been remarkable, and Year 1 and 2 completed their courses without interruption, with recent end of year presentations showing some wonderful outcomes for learning. Our qualifying level MSc cohort has worked tirelessly to address complex challenges of live supervision, clinical work and online academic learning, and are getting on with the help of their supervisors and tutors to ensure they will qualify this year. It has been an inspiration to see them do this and keep going through uncertainty: ‘O brave new world, that has such people in’t!’.


The same goes for our CPD where our events have translated online thanks to the great efforts of Chip Chimera, Angela Vanriel and all the trainers who have so enthusiastically made their events special for the online space. Our Three Helpings of Supervision in April was very well attended and the feedback was very positive. A timely presentation ‘No Frontiers in the Digital World’ by Mark Rivett and Stacey McDonald was attended by more than 60 participants also gave very enthusiastic feedback.  It looks like our digital platform is here to stay, with exciting developments alongside our face to face workshops. Looking forward to:

Myrna Gower: Second Phase Parenting – 12th June

Arlene Vetere and Jan Cooper: Working with Family Violence – 2nd, 3rd, 6th July

Ged Smith: Cut the C**p: Language, Risks and Relationships – 10th July

Matthew Selekman: Co-creating cooperative partnerships with parents – 16th July

Gerrilyn Smith: Self-care in CPD, You can’t pour from an empty cup – 24th July


Hendrix Hammond has even found the time to write a brilliant article for Context, with Derek Nasseri, based on their IFT workshop last October, on different ways of engaging families. Look out for: Engaging clients through re-engaging ourselves in this months’ Context magazine.


Our new home in Great Tower Street is ready, and rather wonderful, and it has been frustrating not to be able to welcome people there as we had hoped this term. Nevertheless, we are planning our new courses and use of the space creatively alongside our digital ways of working, and are learning how those elements can fit together to enhance our trainings and therapy practice in exciting ways. We look forward to the day we can welcome you there. In the meantime: keep on!

Other News

IFT Members Publications

Gross, V. & Goldin, J. (2008) Dynamics and Dilemmas in Working with Families in Inpatient CAMHS. Clinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry Hildebrand, J. & Markovic,

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IFT connections ‘down under’

We are pleased to announce that IFT has formed a ‘twinning’ relationship with The Bouverie Centre, Melbourne. The Bouverie Centre is the leading family therapy

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Agency Based Training at IFT

Agency based training has become a significant pathway for the Institute to share systemic ideas and practices with Social Care and Health professionals. Since the

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