ICP Conference 1ICP Conference 2ICP Conference 3

VOBRIEN ICP Conference

FTAI Member, Valerie O’Brien


Irish Council for Psychotherapy National Conference

“The Role of Psychotherapy in a Healthy Ireland”

18th October 2017

Radisson Blu Hotel, Golden Lane, Dublin
Today,  the Irish Council for Psychotherapy held an important conference The Role of Psychotherapy in a Healthy Ireland , hosted by MEP Nessa Childers.
Key speakers were:

Dr Pat Bracken retired Clinical Director of The Mental Health Service in West Cork

Barbara Fitzgerald, most recently President of the European Confederation of Psychoanalytical Psychotherapies (2012-2016)

Anne Colgan board member of the European Association for Psychotherapy

Senator Colette Kelleher.
The conference collated the views of participants on the title topic and this will be made available to all in due course.

SYSTEMIC CAFE 19th June 2017



    Date:               19th June 2017

    Time:              6.30p.m.

    Venue:            Wynn ’s Hotel, 35-39, Lower Abbey Street,   Dublin 1.   

   Topic:             “Wounded Healers- Deconstructing the

                              personal-professional dichotomy in Mental Health”


Speakers:       Sarah Houston

                           Shalom Lambert


The speakers will introduce the topic and we hope that, once opened to the floor, conversation will flow.


Continuing Professional Development (CPD) = 2 hours. CPD certificates will be issued by the Family Therapy Assoc. of Ireland (FTAI).      See you @ the SYSTEMIC CAFE


Systemic Cafe 19th June 2017 Final Flyer




TENI WORKSHOP (Transgender Equality Network Ireland)


(Transgender Equality Network Ireland)

with Vanessa Lacey

This workshop will explore a broad view of transgender issues including a brief history, complexity of identities and experiences of trans peop  le and their families. There will be a mix of presentation delivery , reflexivity and plenty opportunity for interaction through small group work and larger discussion which will include some personal experiences of the presenter.  Vanessa’s background is Psychology based which facilitates a unique training approach , integrating personal experience, empirically based research and psychological insight. The afternoon will specifically focus on family based interventions which is an essential element of our work with TENI and an introduction to the theory of Ambiguous Loss as a framework for addressing gender transition in families.

Friday 21st April 2017

10.00a.m – 4.00.p.m

Registration: 9.30a.m

Wynn’s Hotel,

Lower Abbey Street,

Dublin 1


Click on link below for further details:

TENI Workshop 21st April 2017


Places limited – please book early


5 CPD points apply


SYSTEMIC CAFE – Working in a Medicalised World 13th February 2017



    Date:               13th February 2017

    Time:              7.00pm – 9.00pm

    Venue:           The Stephen’s Green Hibernian Club,   9, St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2

Parking is at half price in St. Stephen’s Green Centre and is available for as long as you want and the most you pay is €10 (i.e. it is capped at €10)

Topic:             “Working in a Medicalised World”


Deirdre Dooley:  Head of Training, Mater/UCD Family Therapy Training Programme.

Peter McCartan: Formerly of Beaumont Hospital, Peter is a registered Family Therapist and Registered FTAI Supervisor. 

Yvonne O’Meara: Senior Medical Social Worker, Our Lady’s Hospice & Care  Services. Registered Systemic Family Therapist.


Continuing Professional Development (CPD) = 2 hours. CPD certificates will be issued by the Family Therapy Assoc. of Ireland (FTAI).      See you @ the Systemic Cafe


Date for your Diary Systemic Cafe 13th February 2017





Report on EFTA CONFERENCE – Athens 28 September – 1 October 2016


Now that the 9th EFTA conference is over and we have had time to recover our energies and reflect on the experience, I am writing to update you on what was a very busy and productive conference for our Irish participants.

First some background –  The European Family Therapy Association (EFTA) is the European association established in 1990 as an international scientific association dedicated to linking and coordinating European national associations, individuals and institutes in the field of family therapy and systemic therapy.  It has three constituent chambers National Family Therapy Organisations (NFTO), Chamber of Individual Members (CIM) and the Training Institutes Chamber (TIC). Each Chamber has an elected board of 7 members and the EFTA board is made up of all three boards. The board has a three-year term with chamber elections being conducted at the congress. Ireland, at the last congress in Istanbul in 2013, was successful in getting two FTAI members elected.  I was elected to the NFTO board and have served as its chairperson for three years, Philip Kearney was elected to the TIC board and served as its secretary. We have had a strong presence and voice in the EFTA board due to the commitment and encouragement of all the current and previous NFTO and TIC representatives.

The 9th EFTA conference was originally due to take place in the Netherlands. However, it migrated to Greece as the high costs associated with the original venue in Amsterdam would have led to a very prohibitive registration fee and put the conference out of reach for many EFTA members, trainees and students. The move to Greece and organising the conference in a shortened time frame of 9 months involved a tremendous effort from both Conference presidents: EFTA president Maria Borcsa and President of ETHOS Mina Todoulou, supported by the executive committee of EFTA of which I am a member, the organising committee which Philip Kearney and myself served on, and the scientific committees of the conference.

With the goodwill and effort of the Greek organisers, the conference was successful in attracting many participants with over 1500 registered participants from 44 countries and 5 continents. What was so encouraging was the many students and trainees that were a very visible presence at the conference.  The tone of the conference was set by the sun drenched opening ceremony conduced in the Dora Stratou open air theatre and while the plenary halls were very congested for some of the keynote speakers, in general the organisation was very good.

We had eleven presenters from the island of Ireland attending and presenting at the conference.  Our colleagues were involved in chairing symposiums and open forums to speaking in invited symposium and presenting their work in workshops and brief communications.  The opportunity to network and make connections in the broader systemic community provided by the conference was significant both at the academic events and at the many systemic cafes and social events organised as part of the program.

The elections to the EFTA boards took place on Thursday the 29th September at the conference. I had been nominated by FTAI as a candidate for the NFTO chamber board and Dr Valerie O’Brien was nominated by the Clanwilliam institute as a candidate for the TIC Board.  Election to the boards is not an easy task – to be elected in the NFTO chamber you must gain votes from 29 other countries and in   the TIC chamber election from 120 training institutes across Europe.   I am delighted to report that we were both elected on to the respective boards.  This was an excellent result. The NFTO board have also elected me as the chairperson for the next three years.  The EFTA board elected Dr Rodolfo De Bernart to serve as the next EFTA president and now we begin the work for the next three years. I must say this continuing strong Irish presence at the centre of EFTA would not be possible without the foresight of successive FTAI boards in making the commitment to send our representatives to the EFTA meetings.

Kind regards

Monica Whyte- Chair NFTO- EFT