Dear IFS Colleagues and Friends,
It is with enormous gratitude that I accept the position of Board Chairperson for the newly formed Foundation for Self Leadership. I am honored to be a part of the continuing effort to bring Self Leadership to the world.
Dick Schwartz originally developed Internal Family Systems (IFS) to help clients with eating disorders. Now, thirty years later, IFS has established a legacy of effectiveness in treating many mental health issues, and has been applied to myriad of professional and lay public endeavors. These include treatment of certain medical conditions, executive and health coaching, mediation law, meditation, parenting, teaching and spirituality. IFS training opportunities have also significantly expanded through efforts of The Center for Self Leadership, now under the exemplary direction of Jon Schwartz, with sites throughout the world benefiting countless individuals.
Building on these successes, the Foundation for Self Leadership, an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit, has been established to take IFS to the next level of excellence. Its multi-faceted mission is to (a) promote empirical research in order to establish IFS as an evidenced-based treatment; (b) increase access to training by supporting scholarships for students and those with limited financial resources; and (c) support advocacy by expanding awareness of the model.
This founding board will serve for two years and oversee the initial fundraising efforts to support specific strategies, among them launching research projects on IFS and trauma, an online searchable library of IFS writings and research papers, and validation of IFS adherence scales within and beyond psychotherapy.
I would like to thank the Research Team Coordinating Committee as well as the Research Advisory and Outreach Committees for their countless hours of volunteer time put forth toward this effort. Over the next several weeks I will be introducing the board members and am delighted to say that, through their diverse professional and personal experiences, they bring a complement of strategic perspectives to the Foundation.
As a psychiatrist who is also a therapist specializing in trauma, I attest to the powerful effect that IFS has had on my work, my patients and my interaction with them. Personally, it has profoundly changed my relationships with myself, my spouse, and especially my children. It is for these reasons that I am passionate about advancing IFS and hope that people throughout the world will also experience these benefits.
I am eternally grateful to Dick for bringing us this model and for creating an amazing community of compassionate, like-minded individuals with whom to share this transformational journey.
I hope you will consider donating to IFS research, scholarship and advocacy through the Foundation and help support our mission. I look forward to seeing many of you at the Annual Conference starting on October 24th and hope to see you at the inaugural Foundation for Self Leadership Gala Dinner on Friday evening, October 25th, 7:30—10:00pm. Information about the dinner can be found on page 5 of the 2013 IFS Conference brochure.
Please visit our website and make your tax-deductible donation at www.foundationifs.org.
Frank Guastella Anderson