Engaging Caregivers in Family Treatment

CE Hours: 4.5
Cost: $90
Instructor: C. Wayne Jones, PhD

A Live, Interactive Webconference
Friday, 11/4/22, All PA Training Groups via Live Interactive Zoom

In ESFT, efforts to help children with serious emotional problems mostly flow through the caregivers. Therefore, a critical task in the first stage of treatment is engaging caregivers and building a strong therapeutic alliance. Even in the best of times, this can be challenging for therapists working with disadvantaged, multi-stressed families, where caregivers often have a history of traumatic stress. Many caregivers of the children treated in intensive in-home services are distrusting of mental health professionals and are reluctant to participate or engage in family sessions. They tend to see problems and solutions behaviorally, existing separately from themselves and family relationships. Common barriers to caregiver participation and engagement are identified and explored within the social context of the family and community. The Stages of Change model is introduced to guide therapists’ conceptualization and approach to addressing caregiver treatment-hesitancy. Videos are utilized to demonstrates how to apply Motivational Interviewing strategies and emotional support to strengthening trust and move caregivers toward greater engagement in family treatment and a relational focus.


As a result of attending this training, participants will be able to:

  1. Explain the rationale for family therapy and the relational focus of change in ESFT
  2. Describe the tasks and goals of the first stage of ESFT treatment, creating the therapeutic system.
  3. Identify the most common reasons caregivers are reluctant to participate and fully engage in family treatment
  4. Apply a Stages of Change and a Motivational Interviewing approach to engaging caregivers more fully in family treatment

This is an intermediate level course. The target audience is behavioral health professionals working within Pennsylvania’s Family Based program. This is a live synchronous distance learning activity conducted in real time, allowing for simultaneous participation of participants and instructors from different locations.


8:25am-10:30am: Focus on Objectives 1 & 2
10:30am-10:40am: Break
10:40am-1:05pm: Focus on Objectives 3 & 4

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