Super Saturday Presentations

3-hour Clinical Workshops (each in two parts)

Michael Ungar Ceila Falicov Judith Landau Florence Kaslow
Resilience Building Instead of Problem Treatment: A Social Ecological Approach to Intervention with Children, Adolescents, and their Families One Size Doesn't Fit All: Using MECA (Multisystemic Ecological Comparative Approach) to Introduce Culture in Family Therapy Intervention and Treatment Strategies for Adolescent and Young Adult Substance Abusers and Their Parents The Many Challenges of Changing Clinical Populations


Michael Ungar, Ph.D.

Resilience Building Instead of Problem Treatment: A Social Ecological Approach to Intervention with Children, Adolescents, and their Families

When treating children and adolescents from poor, violent, and emotionally difficult backgrounds, we often focus too narrowly on individual problems---like delinquency or conflict with caregivers---and miss the broader sources of healing and resilience in young people's lives. This workshop will present a strengths-focused, resistance-proof Social Ecological Approach to counseling that draws on the child's friends, cousins, aunts, uncles, parents, teachers and community and cultural mentors as potential sources of resilience and positive development. You'll learn how to identify and encourage children's sense of personal self-control, agency and power, social justice and fairness, belonging and purpose, spirituality, and cultural rootedness, and to use this ecological "map" to engage them and their families. We'll discuss how to contract to achieve useful therapeutic goals that are culturally meaningful, and you'll leave knowing how to help these clients successfully transition their success in the office back into their "real-life" social ecologies. To view a sample of Dr. Ungar's work, please go to his website

Learning Objectives:

  1. Discuss the Child and Youth Resilience Measure, an assessment tool that can help clinicians explore the hidden resilience of children and youth;
  2. Learn about seven aspects of resilience necessary for positive development;
  3. Develop a strategy for working without resistance with hard-to-reach, culturally diverse children and adolescents.

About Michael Ungar, Ph.D.

Michael Ungar, Ph.D. is a family therapist, a Professor of Social Work at Dalhousie University, and Scientific Director of the Resilience Research Centre where he leads a $5,000,000 program of research in more than a dozen countries ( He is also Co-Director and Scientific Director of the National Centre of Excellence for Children and Youth in Challenging Contexts (CYCC) ( The CYCC Network was built on the success of its three "pillars": the Resilience Research Centre, the Centre for Foreign Policy Studies, and the Centre for Research on Family Health. The CYCC Network plans to be a world leader in cross-disciplinary knowledge syntheses and knowledge mobilization for meaningful exchange regarding the mental health needs of the world's most vulnerable youth. This knowledge mobilization will integrate popular medical and behavioural sciences models with participatory action research and community development in international community settings.

Dr. Ungar has published over 100 peer-reviewed articles and chapters and 11 books on the topic of resilience and its application to clinical and community work with children and families with complex needs (the Social Ecological Approach to counseling). His latest work includes a clinical textbook Counseling in Challenging Contexts, an edited volume of international papers, The Social Ecology of Resilience: A Handbook of Theory and Practice, and a novel The Social Worker. Michael is also an AFTA board member and Co-Chair of the Nova Scotia Mental Health Strategy Advisory Committee.

Check out his Psychology Today blog at Also, learn about his new book Counseling in Challenging Contexts: Working with Individuals and Families Across Clinical and Community Settings (

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Celia Falicov, Ph.D.

One Size Doesn't Fit All: Using MECA (Multisystemic Ecological Comparative Approach) to Introduce Culture in Family Therapy.

In this workshop, a generalist framework called MECA (Multisystemic Ecological Comparative Approach) will be offered for integrating in therapeutic conversations issues of cultural diversity, the stresses of race and social class locations and the resources of religion and spirituality. Attention will be paid to important cultural differences in family organizations and in how the family life cycle is constructed and experienced. Furthermore, therapists will learn to ask relevant questions that elicit information about significant cultural conflicts, including the therapists' own cultural preferences. This multicultural roadmap and clinical illustrations relevant to assessment, goal setting and interventions will be useful for working with a wide variety of cultural groups rather than becoming competent with one ethnic group only.

Learning Objective: Participants will learn new family therapy concepts and interventions applicable to families in cultural transition. Techniques that fall into "therapeutic rituals" (odd days/even days, rebalancing contracts and others) can be used to deal with the ambiguous losses of migration; or to intervene in generational conflicts between parents and adolescents or gender conflicts between husband and wife.

About Ceila Falicov, Ph.D.

Celia Jaes Falicov, Ph.D. is sought after internationally to give lectures, workshops and training courses on topics related to clinical and community work with immigrants and culturally diverse families. Internationally known family therapy author, teacher and clinician, she is Clinical Professor in the Department of Family and Preventive Medicine and Voluntary Faculty in the Department of Psychiatry of the University of California, San Diego. She is also Director of Mental Health Services at the Student-Run Free Medical Clinic of the University of California, San Diego. She serves on the Advisory Board of several family therapy journals and is Past President (1999-2001) of the American Family Therapy Academy (AFTA).

Dr. Falicov pioneered writings on topics of family transitions, migration, and cultural perspectives in family therapy practice and training, and has received many professional awards for this work. She has developed numerous culturally-attuned interventions for immigrant families. Her MECA (Multisystemic Ecological Comparative Approach) model integrates cultural and sociopolitical similarities and differences across many cultural groups and is used widely in training and research settings. Her most recent book is titled Latino Families in Therapy: A Guide to Multicultural Practice.

Dr. Falicov received the Groves Conference on Marriage and Family Sussman Award for her 2007 article published inFamily Process titled " Working with Transnational Immigrants: Expanding Meanings of Family, Community and Culture".

Dr. Falicov's recent community work focuses on mental health care needs of at-risk immigrant clients, facilitating empowerment groups for parents of various cultural groups, and on training medical students to think in terms of the impact of immigration and culture on health and mental health. She is also involved in a gang prevention project, sponsored by the city of Los Angeles.

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Florence Kaslow, Ph.D., ABPP

Founding and First President - IFTA (1987-1991)
The Many Challenges of Changing Clinical Populations

Part 1: Introduction - 1:00 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.
Until the past three and a half decades the couples and families we taught and learned about, conducted research about and saw in clinical practice within any country and culture constituted a population about which there were several prototypes and typologies, with descriptive characteristics of dysfunctional, midrange and healthy couples and families. When we encountered exceptions, we turned to peers, supervisors and consultants to discuss these, often considering them the cases that presented opportunities to expand our knowledge base and treatment armamentarium. Each country generated its own theoretical and treatment variations – adopting and adapting those that had the best explanatory and problem solving potential and healing power in its context (or was presented by the most persuasive or charismatic "guru" from a foreign land).
Many were unprepared for the vastly changing and expanding kinds of populations they would be expected to teach and supervise about and conduct therapy with in the current millennium. Some enormous shifts resulted from mega trends occurring in many parts of the globe at the end of the 20th and beginning of the 21st centuries.

Part 2: The Megatrends -1:15 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
In this Salon/Workshop we will explore some of these trends and the gigantic impact they have had and continue to exert on the world of couple and family therapy: teaching, research and practice. These include:

  • Civil strife/warfare between competitive, conflicting ethnic, cultural, religious, or racial groups – internecine persecution, ethnic cleansing – people fleeing, gunfire and death on the streets.
  • War between neighboring countries – rivalries for power and dominance – subjugation.
  • Widespread immigration – people emigrating from their countries of origin to escape warfare, poverty, inhumane treatment, living in tent cities, famine, etc.
  • Recipient countries – many unprepared for the new immigrant groups who bring horrific histories of trauma; different values and belief systems; speak different languages; are accustomed to different legal, judicial, political and police systems.
  • Violence and terrorism – violence in the family [domestic violence], in schools, in communities. Fear in the streets, at airports, in the workplace, on vacation – where is it safe? (Includes honor killings in the family).
  • Technological revolution – seeing violence daily on TV in one's living room, on the internet, having one's private email hacked, pornographic websites – information explosion and easy accessibility exist side by side with decreased privacy and more impersonal communication.
  • Diversity of sexual orientation – more people acknowledging LGBT status/lifestyle.
  • Globalization of business and wealth.
  • Military service in multiple countries.
  • Much more work, study and travel abroad.
  • Escalating separation and divorce rates.
  • Increase in cohabitation and number of children born "out of wedlock".
  • Rise in numbers of international adoptions.
  • Explosion in sex trafficking.
  • More addictive behaviors – substance abuse, gambling, sex addiction, overeating, computer addiction including pornography addition sex hotlines.

Part 3: Implications for Teaching and Practicing - 3:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Many of these trends have contributed to the spiraling number of bi-cultural, bi-religious, multi-ethnic couples and families who present variegated portraits of the "new normative" that we now need to understand, to teach about, and treat. How we accomplish some mastery of this complex tapestry will constitute the material to be discussed in the second half of the Salon deliberations.

About Florence Kaslow, Ph.D., ABPP

Florence Kaslow, Ph.D., ABPP, is in private practice as a consultant to family businesses, legal and medical practices, and as an executive, career, life transition and relationship coach in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. She was the founding and first president of the International Family Therapy Association (IFTA) (1987-1991) and served on its Board for 16 years. She is also a Past President the International Academy of Family Psychologists, the American Board of Forensic Psychology and the American Board of Family Psychology. Currently Florrie is President of Kaslow Associates, a consulting firm; Director of the Florida Couples and Family Institute; and a Distinguished Visiting Professor of Psychology at the Florida Institute of Technology in Melbourne, Florida. Dr. Kaslow is a past president of the Divisions of Family Psychology and Media Psychology of APA. She has conducted numerous workshops throughout the United States and in over 50 other countries, on family business topics and numerous individual, couple, family and divorce therapy related topics.

Florence is or has been a member of numerous journal editorial boards, including IFTA's Journal of Family Psychotherapy (an Associate Editor), Family Business Review, Journal of Family Psychology and Journal of Marital and Family Therapy (a former editor-in-chief); and the American Journal of Family Therapy and is a prolific book author and editor (30 books). Over 190 of her articles (and book chapters) have been published. Dr. Kaslow is co-author of Painful Partings: Divorce and Its Aftermath (New York: Wiley, 1997) with Dr. Lita L. Schwartz. In her most recent book, Handbook of EMDR and Family Therapy Processes (co-edited with F. Shapiro and L. Maxfield, Wiley, 2007) she wrote the chapter on Family Systems Theories and Therapeutic Applications.

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Judith Landau, MB ChB (MD equivalent)

Intervention and Treatment Strategies for Adolescent and Young Adult Substance Abusers and Their Parents

Working with adolescent and young adult substance abusers presents unique challenges for addiction and mental health professionals. Because early substance use is correlated with increased likelihood of long-term addiction issues, targeting this high-risk population is crucial for addiction prevention. Working effectively with this population requires an awareness of their unique needs and an adaptation of traditional strategies. This workshop will explore these particular challenges, including the impact of addiction on the immature brain, the importance of early intervention, common parenting pitfalls, honoring independence while maintaining boundaries, etc. Case studies will use the Evidence-Based, Best Practice ARISE® Intervention and Continuing Care as a vehicle for how professionals can adapt their approach to better meet the adolescent client and their families.

About Judith Landau, MD, DPM, LMFT, CAI, BRI II

Dr. Judith Landau, a child, family and community neuropsychiatrist and former professor of psychiatry and family medicine, has specialized in addiction and other behavioral compulsions for more than 30 years, exploring the origins of addiction and how to facilitate long-term healing for addicted individuals and their families. As co-developer of the Evidence-Based, Best-Practice ARISE® Intervention and Continuum of Care, she has conducted several thousand interventions, including executive interventions and trained more than 1,000 people in the model. Dr. Landau has co-authored more than 200 peer-reviewed publications and books on the model, taught in over 100 countries, and served on numerous editorial boards. She has consulted to UN, WHO, NIMH, NIDA, NIAAA, SAMHSA, and several international governments including Kosovo, Argentina, South Africa, Hungary, Bosnia, and Taiwan. Dr. Landau is recipient of the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy's award for Outstanding Contribution to the Field of Marriage and Family Therapy and the American Family Therapy Academy's award for Innovative Contribution to Family.

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