Foundations Series 2022-2023

This series is designed for family-based therapists in their first 12 to 18 months of training in ESFT. There are three components: 1) assigned readings from the treatment manual Setting the Stage for Change, 2) selected introductory courses from our online learning center, and 3) ten live virtual foundations clinicals led by our faculty. Each live foundations clinical will have assigned readings and online webinars related to the specific theme of that day’s presentation. To get the most out of the live trainings, trainees are encouraged to prepare for the live foundations clinicals by completing assignments prior to each training. Foundations will integrate this material into their trainings. They will help trainees digest concepts they are learning in the readings and in the online courses and apply them to actual clinical cases.  

The Foundations series introduces and familiarizes trainees with 1) the basic conceptual foundations of ESFT, 2) common clinical presentations of the trauma-impacted children and families served by PA FBMHS, 3) the six stages of ESFT implementation and the treatment tasks associated with each, and 4) the six mechanisms of change that drive ESFT intervention. The primary focus of the foundations live clinical trainings is to facilitate the development of clinical skills in 1) developing the therapeutic relationship and constructing a therapeutic system, 2) recognizing family interactional patterns and family structure, and 3) using the ecomap, timeline, and genogram therapeutically.  Once a FBMHS therapist has completed all Foundations online courses and didactics, they must complete a mini capstone to be eligible foe as Level 1 certificate in ESFT. 

See the list of required 22 hours of online Foundations Courses here.

Each of the 10live streaming Foundations workshops are structured similarly. They all begin with a brief didactic where one ESFT concept or skill is introduced, it is shown how it is related to the readings and the online courses, and a video is shown that demonstrates the concept or skill. There are two clinical case presentations, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Although guidance is provided on how the teams might best conceptualize and treat the case, the primary focus of case discussions is on how the “theme of the day” is represented. The case material is then used to create multiple role-plays so that all participants have an opportunity to practice skills. Everyone role plays.

Altoona / Central PA Group
Adam Boguski, MDiv
Joshua Irvine, MA, LPC

Norristown Group
Frani Pollack, MSW, Ph.D.
Dan Gilmore, MA, LPC  

Susquehanna Group (formerly WellSpan Site)
Shannon Stalnaker, MS
Marlene N. Reiff, LCSW/LMFT

Foundations Series