with Shirley Turcotte, Alexis Phillips and Shaun Phillips
In New York City Starting January 25, 2013
Taught from an
Aboriginal-Indigenous perspective this advanced 21 day, seven module program
uses Focusing-Oriented Therapy as a safe and effective method of working
with clients who have experienced complex trauma.
If you are coming from out of the area, we can provide a list of hotels.
There is limited space at the Alma Mathews House if you would like to
arrange sleeping accommodations:
The Focusing-Oriented Therapy and Complex Trauma Program emphasizes
experience, knowledge, and application through classroom instruction,
clinical practice (logged and supervised therapy sessions for those wishing
certification through The Focusing Institute) and clinical
supervision/observation. A variety of treatment modalities are woven
throughout the modules, including experiential exercises, story-telling,
ceremonial processes and land-based healing techniques.
Learn more about:
Lead Instructors: Shirley Turcotte, Alexis Phillips and Shaun Phillips (pictured above)
Co-Instructors Betty McCorkle, Rob Parker, Antoinette Rodriguez Smith, and DaRa Elebe-Williams
Focusing-Oriented Therapy and Complex Trauma
The teaching and practice of Focusing-Oriented Therapy in
Complex Trauma (FOTCT) is gaining interest in the U.S. and Canada. There are an
increasing number of therapists and practitioners utilizing FOTCT in the
tri-state area, Western Unites States, and California. The Focusing Institute is
pleased to offer this seven module training program for participants to learn
and experience this compassionate, inspiring and effective approach for working
with complex trauma.
The practice of psychotherapy is undergoing changes resulting from current
research in neuroscience which underscores the importance of attachment,
emotion, the body, and relationship in the healing process. Focusing-Oriented
Therapy (FOT) offers well-developed techniques to enable therapists and
practitioners to access body-oriented, internal processes that researchers are
finding key to neural integration and change.
FOT is a body-centered and person-centered approach to healing that was
developed three decades ago at the University of Chicago by Dr. Eugene Gendlin.
It is a practice that is grounded in a philosophical paradigm Gendlin developed.
This process enables therapists and practitioners to guide clients to sense into
their bodies and into current-moment experiences to bring about what Focusing
founder Gendlin calls 'life-forward' motion. FOT allows the client to be an
active participant in their healing and empowers them to determine the pace,
direction, and intensity of their journey to health.
Building on this approach, FOT in Complex Trauma was developed by Shirley
Turcotte over the last 25 years in Canada by integrating an Aboriginal based,
anti-oppressive, and culturally diverse worldview understanding. This
current-day approach and practice of trauma treatment is inclusive of cultural,
ethnic and spiritual awareness. It reaches beyond common assumptions that we are
all the same regardless of our cultural ancestry and experiences. It connects
with the unique diversity of histories and experiences of human beings. It
expands the current concepts and understanding of complex trauma.
FOTCT can be particularly effective in the treatment and healing of complex
trauma precipitated by accidents, natural and human-caused disasters, loss,
sexual, physical, emotional abuse and/or neglect, institutional abuse, and
inter-generational trauma and oppression. FOTCT teaches specialized skills for
working with "speechless trauma" that has become "stuck" at earlier
developmental stages and that interferes with functioning satisfactorily in
one's present life. These skills facilitate the release of body-held trauma and
the integration/metabolization of the experience of mind/body once the release
has completed so that life can move forward toward healing and a greater sense
To know more about this approach to trauma and how it is being applied see:
Who Should Attend
This program will benefit those who are interested in developing advanced
clinical treatment techniques and strategies essential to the healing of
traumatic life situations. Focusing-Oriented Therapy is particularly helpful to
those who work with residential school survivors, addictions, and survivors of
sexual, physical and emotional abuse of all ages. The program especially
benefits counselors and therapists who work in various cross-cultural
This seven module program invites psychotherapists, psychologists,
psychiatrists, social workers, marriage and family therapists, counselors, other
practitioners, and students in the mental health professions who want to bring a
body-based, experiential focus to their agency or practice.
This workshop also may be of interest to acupuncturists, nurse practitioners,
massage therapists and other body practitioners who are interested in increasing
their familiarity and knowledge base about trauma and the mind/body connection.
New and continuing students of Focusing-Oriented Therapy are welcome.
How to Apply
We suggest registering early as the number of seats is limited. Please email a
letter of intent, your resume, and the program application (download
program application here) to the Program Coordinator, Melinda Darer:
For additional information on the application process
please contact Melinda.
Program Fees and Scholarships
There are three payment methods:
- Total cost to complete this advanced 21 day, seven module program is: $3,850 if paid in full.
- Two equal payments - $1925 at registration and $1925 on June 15, 2013. ($550 for three training days for each of 7 modules).
- If a payment plan is needed, the tuition is $4,200 ($350 per month for 12 months). If you need to make
another payment arrangement, please contact Melinda Darer:
Melinda@focusing.org. Once a payment plan is set up and a participant's credit card changes for some reason other than new expiration date, a $10 change fee will be applied.
Fees include all training materials and completion
A limited number of scholarships are available on a first come basis by
application. Priority will be given to applicants who work with communities
where there has been historic oppression, to frontline workers who work in under
resourced communities, and applicants in financial need.
An administrative fee of $150 will be charged for cancellation by November 30, 2012. On December 1, 2013, all
fees are nonrefundable except in medical emergency.
Clinical Practice and Supervision
This component of the FOTCT program provides participants with clinical skills
and feedback about their level of practice throughout the program. Participants
will practice new skills learned on the third day of each module. Should
participants choose to become certified with The Focusing Institute, they will
be required to document therapy sessions and attend regular supervision
sessions. These participants will submit one videotape upon completion of the
program for evaluation by the Program Supervisor to demonstrate the required
level of competency for certification.
In the observation component, which is ongoing throughout the program,
participants will gain experience in how to offer feedback from the client
perspective to peers in a professional and constructive manner. As well,
participants will experience and effectively observe and reflect on the
therapeutic process and will debrief in clinical supervision sessions.
Class times are 9 am to 4:30 pm, and will be held in NYC.
|Module 1: Complex Trauma -- January 25-27, 2013
You will learn the five basic steps of Focusing. You will
learn about the impact and assessment of complex trauma within self, family,
communities and global systems. You will explore traumatic bonding and how
to interrupt this dynamic. Aboriginal-Indigenous treatment models (Trauma
Wheel Assessment) and attitudes for enhancing trauma skills when using
FOT will be introduced, including how to prepare a safe ground for
unraveling trauma, vicarious trauma and intergenerational trauma. A variety
of treatment possibilities are woven throughout the seven modules via
|Module 2: Focusing-Oriented Therapy and Complex Trauma -- March 22-24, 2013
You will consider neurological research and its
implications in the treatment of complex trauma. You will learn about the
resilience of our brains and bodies to hold and release trauma and how to
approach trauma experiences from a post-traumatic growth perspective. The
Medicine Wheel is used to demonstrate ways of working with clients to
recognize and unravel trauma. FOT techniques are further developed.
|Module 3: Intermediate Focusing-Oriented Therapy -- May 17-19, 2013
You will learn how to work more deeply with regression,
dissociation and ego states; how to ground clients from psychotic breaks
and/or out of control emotions; and self-injury from Aboriginal-Indigenous
perspectives. The importance of land based concepts in treatment is also
introduced. You will continue to practice and deepen your skills in FOT. You
will deepen your skills using Aboriginal/Indigenous teachings of respectful
engagement and balance. How Indigenous Knowledge is used as a framework and
is central to connecting with unresolved trauma.
|Module 4: Advanced Focusing-Oriented Therapy -- July 12-14, 2013
You will learn to identify and practice helping clients
move through memory, intergenerational, and vicarious flashbacks and
abreactions. You will explore how unresolved current and historical traumas
play out in relationships. FOT will be used as a frame to explore various
modalities for working with children and youth who have experienced
developmental trauma. You will learn how to increase resilience and
community wellness using art, play and movement. You will continue to
practice and deepen your skills in FOT and develop implicit body-centred
|Module 5: Depression and Complex
Trauma -- September 27-29, 2013
You will learn to assess various aspects and complexities
of depression and personality disorders to determine treatment approaches.
You will continue to practice and deepen your skills in FOT and start
learning how to 'flush' complex memory and intergenerational trauma in FOT
sessions. Indigenous Knowledge frameworks, ceremony, song and connection to
land, geography, seasons and elements may be explored as implicit resource
development. Whole Body Focusing-Oriented Therapy techniques are introduced.
|Module 6: Clinical Spirituality and Complex Trauma -- November 15-17, 2013
This module introduces you to spiritual healing
techniques and spiritual boundaries for working with complex,
intergenerational and vicarious trauma. Grieving will be explored as a
progressive forward movement. Aboriginal-Indigenous knowledge cosmology such
as ancestral knowledge and connection to ancestors will be explored where
|Module 7: Dreams and Complex Trauma -- January 17-19, 2014
You will develop skills to connect with dreams and
nightmares to help unravel complex trauma, inter-generational trauma and
vicarious trauma. This course will also synthesize FOT theory and skills
developed throughout the program. You will continue to synthesize and
demonstrate Aboriginal/Indigenous holistic values of respectful, responsible
relationships that are reciprocal and reverent.
||Shirley Turcotte, Alexis Phillips, and Shaun Phillips
||Betty McCorkle, Rob Parker, Antoinette Rodriguez Smith, and DaRa Elebe-Williams
||Claudia Chau, Margarita Guergue, Charlotte Howorth, and Isabelle Adon
For instructor biographies see www.fotcomplextrauma.com
Product Code: W-130125-FOTCT