News and Views

Lewis N. Foster

MFGT Resource Center


November 21, 2020  (Lewis Foster)

I had the opportunity today to take part in a two hour Zoom Conference with Javier Sempere and Claudio Fuenzalia from the Centre de Terapia Interfamiliar Center in Elche, Spain (Interfamily Therapy Center - CTI).  Paul Thorington and Natalie Boorman joined in as well.  After introducing ourselves Javier and Claudio gave us an overview of their Multiple Family Group Therapy (MFGT) program that involves their training therapists on their model of MFGT.  They shared videos of Multi-Family Groups that they have been involved with in Cuba, Peru, Venezuela and Spain.  They are filled with energy and excitement about their program and upcoming projects and convinced me that they are doing more to promote MFGT than anyone else in the world.  It seems that there is more MFGT taking place in Europe and other countries than there is in the United States.  They use Zoom to hold Multiple Family Therapy sessions.*  COVID-19 has taken a toll, but managed care has reduced the opportunity to use MFGT in America, because, there are few funds to support it.  In countries where there are National Healthcare Systems the funding is available and the model is encouraged, because, it is less expensive and can serve more people and "it works".  I was touched when they said that was the seed for their movement which began in the early 2000's.  I'm glad I lived long enough to see it.  Peter Laqueur would be proud.  Paul said that some of the emotion in the sessions shared would have brought Peter to tears.  Claudio and Javier recently published a book on MFGT in Spanish and you can find it on their website: .  (see below)  The Zoom Conference was recorded and they plan to use the video in their training across Europe and South America.  It was a privilege and honor to be with them and I look forward to more interactions in the future.  Maybe if we can find a way to fund a conference here in the US they will come and present their model when the COVID-19 Virus is under control.

If you are interested in attending a conference with Javier and Claudio let me know by sending me your email address at  You can make contact with Javier and Claudio through their website.  If you do make contact with them, you'll be glad you did.

Claudio Fuenzalida, Psychologist                            Javier Sempere, MD

Lewis N. Foster, MFGT Resource Center, Florence, SC

* Don't want to discount Tom Saunders in Florida who is also using the internet to hold MFGT sessions.


After several years being managed by Jim Holder the MFGT Website is now being managed again by Lewis N. Foster.  The site was never closed and has been in operation since 2005. 


Dear Mr. Foster and colleagues:

We are very sorry about the news you are closing your webpage as we are your followers since a long time ago. In fact, Dr. Laqueur and you and the rest of contributors to your page have already been our best masters who have inspired our work in multifamily group therapy in the lasts years.

We are a Spanish psychiatrist (Javier Sempere) and a Chilean psychologist (Claudio Fuenzalida) who have been dedicating most of our energies to study and apply more collaborative, inclusive and dialogical practices in the world of psychotherapy. And we have no doubt that MFGT represents the richest setting for developing these therapeutic interventions.

In the last fifteen years we have specially centralized ours efforts in a constructionist way of MFGT model that we call Interfamily Therapy (IFT). Ten years ago we created the Interfamily Therapy Center (CTI) in Elche (Spain) from where we have guided the study, application and investigation in IFT including two doctoral thesis with very inspiriting positive clinical outcomes that supports and stimulates our work. 

In the recent years we are working hard in spreading this multifamily model not only in Spain, but also in other countries in Europe and Latin-America and –in a close future- also in Asia. As a result, multifamily/interfamily therapy is beginning to vertebrate many social, sanitary and educational institutions in many countries and contributing to create a more social and democratic psychology all over the world.

We look forward to keeping in touch and contributing to the work Dr. Laqueur, you and your followers bravely began. We have two web pages opened to all of you: (in English) and (in Spanish) and our mail address to you disposition:

Thanks for your attention!

Dr. Javier Sempere and Claudio Fuenzalida

Director and co-director of Interfamily Therapy Center (CTI)

Asociación Salut Mental (ASM)
Centre de Teràpia Interfamiliar (CTI)
C/ Alcalde Juan Hernández Rizo 53 bajo 2
Elche 03203, España
(+34) 96 542 96 62
(+34) 630001623


November 29, 2016

Thanks for the heads up Lewis, And thank you for your many many years of wonderful service. If you're interested in having someone manage the website moving forward maybe I, along with someone else, could keep it running. Or maybe the John Edwards foundation, of which I am part of, would pick it up as a way of honoring John's work with multiple family groups. Just some thoughts, no worries either way. Best wishes.  Michael  McGuire


Dear Mr. Foster,

Thanks so much for having kept the website alive during all the last
years. You have done all the practitioners and researchers a big favor.
I will download all the articles and am very grateful for your service.

All the best for the future and your retirement

Gabriele Schäfer

Prof. Dr. Gabriele Schäfer

Hochschule Bremen
University of Applied Sciences
Fakultät Gesellschaftswissenschaften
Studiengang Soziale Arbeit
Neustadtswall 30
28199 Bremen

Tel.: 0049 421 5905 2821


November 29, 2016

All my best to you and thank you for providing such invaluable resources.

Warmest regards,

Tara Maddalena, Psy. D. | Supervisor of Clinical Services | Psychologist

Madonna Heights Group Residence

SCO Family of Services

151 Burrs Lane

Dix Hills, NY 11746

631.643.8800 ext. 0147



November 29, 2016


Thank you sooo much for your dedication and service for the MFGT therapy model. Your efforts have surely not gone to waste. I will forever be grateful for your mentorship of my early career and of how MFGT helped me to grow as a person and therapist. I have a deep connection to  MFGT and continue to borrow from and teach others about the power of family therapy and MFGT. 

With deep appreciation,


David A. Kahn, PhD, LPC, LPCS


November 29, 2016

I am still happy to take over maintaining the site! I know we had a challenge - okay, I had the challenge - coordinating a time to talk. Can we retry?

We would need to coordinate a transfer of the domain, any fees to do so I would be happy to fund. I also have a few ideas on a new design - including a section to thank you for founding the site. 
Please let me know your thoughts! -Valerie Jencks :)


November 29, 2016

Lewis,  Just wanted to thank you for all you have done over the past 30 plus years to assist in the treatment of our families!!  You definitely placed your mark on so many of our clinicians in the 301 system and beyond.  Systemic work is coming back into the fold, which is where it always needs to be….because it is where so many of our issues are rooted…..Let me know if there will be other sites that can assist or contacts to carry on your valued work and service to our field.  Thanks again for everything.  Lori 

Lori W. Pruitt, M.ED., LPC/S

Newberry Mental Health

2043 Medical Park Drive

Newberry, SC 29108



June 27, 2012

I work with organizations that provide family support services. I would like to request the following PowerPoint presentations to use as a resource to share with these organizations.  Additionally, I would love to be added to any email/newsletters lists you have.

Thank you,  Sheila

Sheila J. Griffin, Family Lead

Coordinated System of Care

Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals



June 13, 2012

I have read and looked at your website and your teachings, very powerful and engaging.
I am wondering if I can get copies of your power point presentations please, I very interested about learning more of what you have. I find value in your work very user friendly, I myself is a counsellor and an Aboriginal Australian and I have a thirst to help my people with in staying connected and assist with a Social Emotional Wellbeing Issue.
If possible can I have all power point presentations please?
Thank you
Cleavon Davis | Resource Officer
Youth and Family Support Services | Bris Nth Service Centre | Department of Justice and Attorney General 
I acknowledge the Traditional Custodians past and present on whose land I walk, I work and I live.
"Healing Starts with you"


May 11, 2012


I would enjoy receiving all of the power point presentations offered on the MFGT website.  We are starting a group in Santa Cruz, CA and may use them in a variety of ways.  Also, are there any trainings for facilitators in the upcoming months that you know of?

thank you

Jennifer Young



March 29, 2012

Thank you so very much for your support.

I have read through the first set of power-points  you have sent me and I find them very inspiring, welcoming, supportive, accepting and encouraging. I can tell they were created by professional therapists because I felt "therapeuticized" while reading them -- I felt an enthusiasm as if I am about to do something important and that I am going to get better and better at it :) seems like a long run, but possible and appealing.
If my clients can leave with such feelings from the sessions, I'll be glad enough to have achieved a lot!
This is my personal email address, feel free to add it to your mailing list
May I recommend other colleagues to ask for your materials or is it ok for you if I forward them?
I am highly grateful to you for this! 
kind regards

Romanian family therapist


November 8, 2010

Dear Lewis, it is good to hear from you. I am doing a multi family group at an alcohol and drug treatment center; it will be two years in January that I started leading the group. I trained another therapist to lead a group at another office the treatment program has. Now another young therapist is preparing to lead a MFG. Unfortunately, the person who was leading the group before me did not include the patients. When I tried to change that my plan bombed. The clinical director would like me to start another multi family group that would include the patients. I am not sure I have the time or energy. I closed my private practice at the end of September with the idea of cutting back. Ha! I direct the new people to the Multiple Family Therapy Group website. It is a great resource. Peace! Peggy


October 25, 2010

Hi Tom and thanks for responding, its late and I'm tired I'll write more later .  Peter usually worked with co therapists and certainly encouraged it in his training.  He gave lots of workshops, had VIPs and colleagues sit in on his groups and had many trained observers who he met with regularly for briefings after the groups etc.   His wife Victoria ( Ria) was actively involved as a behind the scenes colleague and for the longest time she was the coordinator of the camera teams and such. I can say more in this regard.
       Anyway, maybe my remark was too blunt to begin with.  I wasn't really offended,  just seem to have a need to come out of my corner and explain more about Peter's work, as much , other than his articles,  isn't widely known and the media didn't exist in his day as it does now.  Lets talk some more  " iron sharpening iron"  and such , mine being a bit more rusty than yours as you have taken MFT to some new frontiers.      Paul Thorington


October 23, 2010

Hi Paul,
Good memory!  That meeting was in the latter part of 1991.  Marybeth Weigand and I presented, as you did, in the round, and it was about this very same subject.  We had been experimenting for years with the MFG model in a wide variety of settings, and from zero pay to full fare.  In fact, the Swiss cheese analogy is Marybeth's and still resonants with me as a core belief.
I did not mean, in any way, to offend you or anyone else with the statement about working alone.  It's OK to have different points of view that have come from our own experiences.  Actually, I borrowed the "...two are better than one..." idea from King Solomon in Ecclesiastes 4:9 when he said, "Two people can accomplish more than twice as much as one; and they get a better return for their labor.  If one person falls, the other can reach out and help.  But people who are alone when they fall are in real trouble."  The Bible, Living Word edition.  Most of my great ideas, in fact, are borrowed.
Another person who comes to mind is the historian and philosopher, Alphonse Bertillon, who is quoted as saying, "One can only see what one observes, and one observes only things which are already in the mind."  As a teacher of critical thinking, I would have to say that this describes our greatest human deficit.  That's why the world remained flat until several hundred years ago; that Joan d'Arc was burned at the stake for doing what no man could do in winning the French-English 100 year war (actually 116 years); and that some were convinced to eat fish on Friday, or sin, because everyone had forgotten about the beef shortage in Italy during the 400's.
My personal bias is that the pilot needs the wing-walker, as much as the wing-walker needs the pilot.  Yes, one-on-one therapy works, and one-on-couples (not so well), and one-on-group, and one-on-one multiple families groups.  But at what price?  To the therapist, to the MFG?  One of the many reasons that insurance companies refuse to fund any more addictions treatment is because of the miserable fail rate.  The results were not bad at the end of the treatment program...but what about a month later?  a year later?  ten years later?  Are you keeping in touch with you 'patients' or groups?
My belief is that a well matched couple, working in tandem, can help each other to stay disengaged from the theater crap that fascinates us all...because it is like watching movies of our own stuff...of our own lives!  And, meanwhile, it's a great income!
My Dad went to his grave asking, "Why to people pay you to listen to their feelings?  Do they not have anyone else to listen?"  I never had an answer for him.
If we are honest to God, and honest with our own selves, some time, at some level, we have to stop and ask, "What am I teaching?  What am I learning?  Long term, does it work?"
Thank you, Mary Beth, for struggling through all of these personal lessons with me, and holding my feet to the fire through it all!  I love you!

PS  Marybeth has fallen hard, 'head-over-heels,' as we used to say, and has retired to Arizona with her lover.  I am eternally thankful for what she taught me on the way!


October 22, 2010

Hi Noreen,
Good to hear from you.  I would love to network on a regular basis.  There is nothing so rich as hearing the stories from the experience of another.  What is your schedule like, week to week?  Mine is fairly predictable with the exception of my sons' soccer games schedule.
I work a four day week at the college with the following hours:
Monday          8:00 am - 9:30 pm
Tuesday        8:00 am - 8:30 pm
Wednesday   8:00 am - 3:00 pm
Thursday       8:00 am - 4:30 pm
For the next four weeks, inside of that schedule, I will be teaching a class in Professional Development, all four days, from 8:30 am - 12:30 pm, because the other two sections were already filled.
My sons, Thomas, 17, and Elliott, 13, are my primary preoccupation.  For the past ten years, their mother and I have a shared parenting arrangement, so they are with me on Wednesday and Thursday, and every other weekend.  I'm hanging pretty close to home right now because they just lost their stepfather to a divorce as well last March.  It's also Thomas' senior year, so he is involved in a many activities.  They are with their Mom this weekend, so that leaves this Saturday and Sunday open if you have time to meet.  Otherwise, we will find a mutual fit soon.
Looking forward to meeting you!  Would you care to drop in and have lunch with us, Lewis??


October 22, 2010

I'm delighted to be part of this e-mail group and sincerely thank Lewis Foster for inviting me last summer after I found the MFGT's website.
By way of brief introduction, I was part of one of Dr. L's MFGT simulated workshops, circa 1978/79 (just before his untimely death) in Montreal, Canada when I was a post doc student at the Institute of Jewish Family and Community Psychiatry.   He selected me to be the protagonist:  a 17 y.o. hospitalized girl who was struggling with which direction her life would take, and she was torn between entering the convent (girls actually did that back-in-the-day), or becoming a whore.  Dr. L. was massively impressive, and every inch the maestro directing his MFGT workshop.  He wooed and wowed the best therapists in the business.
Anyhoo, my husband (a clinical psychologist) and I moved from New York to Longwood, Florida a year and a half ago.  So we're literally neighbors Tom.  If you or anyone else on the list would like to get together to network, etc., I'd love it.
In any case, thanks again for including me in this very interesting list.  
Best regards,
Noreen M. Keenan Ph.D.


October 22, 2010

Good morning, Everyone, and especially, Matthew,
Welcome to the world of MFG!  There is no family as joyful and grateful than a family who weathered a transition of any kind, and learned from it.  I call these families "Experienced Families" because they have been baptized by fire, grown through their pain, and are always excited to share what they have learned.  I just finished writing a piece, which is attached, about one of my own personal learning transitions called "The Valley of the Shadow."
Coach Lou Holtz, one of my all time personal heroes, summarizes it best with one of his pet catchy phrases:  "When you experience pain in life, you can become bitter or better; it is always your choice."
When you meeting with a group of Present Families, who are currently in the midst of transitions, and you seed that group with several Experienced Families, the only task left for you as a consultant, is to let go of control, and everything that you learned in school, and watch the beauty that unfolds.  Always video tape each meeting, and ask a graduate intern who is interested in family, to be the that you are not further distracted. 
A friend, some time ago, shared a rather crude joke about how to avoid having was "Sit down, and keep your mouth shut."  That's about the best advice that I have ever heard for consulting with families.
Where Laqueur's work fell short, is that he worked alone...and in doing so, never really left the world of therapy behind...that somehow we were endowed with a special gift to fix everyone in the world...probably where the saying started, "I'll die trying..." and most do.  As most of us have learned, later rather than sooner, we have only ourselves to fix.
Never try to wing-walk without totally trusting the pilot.  Find a co-consultant, always of the opposite gender.  Very often, that person will be someone that you see as a mentor, that you believe knows more than you.  That's never true!  They know different than you, and they bring different personal baggage to the group, which is what makes it work.  Picture two slices of swiss cheese, cut out of two different blocks of cheese.  Each slice of cheese is full of holes, but if you lay one slice on top of the other, there are almost no holes exposed.
Now add High Risk Families to the group, and it will bloom right in front of you.  Oddly enough, because of the manner in which we all give away our personal power, the group participants still believe and express that the consultants "saved their lives."  The consultants are puzzled because they did the least amount of "work" that they have ever done.
One last thought (I promise...blah, blah, blah)  Years ago, I had a dream that multiple families groups could connect with each other by audio/video feed, from city to city, and from country to country.  The cost was still prohibitive but the dream never died.  Lewis Foster was going to participate from University of South Carolina, and Al Serrano from the Philadelphia Child Guidance Clinic, along with my MFG here.  Today, that dream is ready to happen.  If you have not signed up for free at , look into it immediately.  Most laptops now come equipped with excellent cameras.  If not, a clip-on studio resolution (720p) camera is available through Costco or Sam's for less than $50.  Or if you are using a digital video camera with a USB 2.0 connection to your computer, that will work as well.  By the way, Skype crosses all platforms including MAC and Windows, and is completely seamless.  Most of the others, do not.
I am presently starting a new community MFG in Sanford, Florida, through a non-profit foundation called Harvest-Time International.  That's a whole other subject, but suffice to say, in the middle of their 100,000 sq ft warehouse and office space, there is a full fledged audio-video studio with cameras, mixer boards, etc., that they are making available to me at no charge.  Currently, Skype can only handle a two way video conference in real time.  But when we need three or more, there is also with a nominal monthly fee for the 3rd - 6th sites.
My Skype handle is rockyracoon2009 (from The Beatles White Album), so after you have signed up, include me in your contacts list with a note somewhere about MFG.
I don't have them on this laptop, but if any of you are interested in some published works that I have done, let me know and I will forward it to you.  Matthew, one psychiatric facility where I consulted for two years, believed in MFG so much that they required every inpatient family to participate, regardless of diagnosis.  As most of you know, the homogenous rule that prevailed in our training, was blown out the window.  At it's peak, we had 63 families in one room with every garden variety of diagnosis possible!
Matthew, are you ready to play??
Thank you for your interest,


October 22, 2010

Matthew gave me permission to forward this email to you.  If you can provide information to him I'm sure he would appreciate it.
Lewis N. Foster


October 20, 2010

Dear Lewis,
I'm writing you this email as I have a burgeoning interest in Multiple Family Therapy.  I work in a psychiatric hospital in England and have been looking for journal articles on Peter Laqueur's work, to form the basis for the development of a MFGT service that my Family Therapy Department can offer families of adolescents diagnosed with severe and enduring mental illnesses.
I've clicked on this link for a copy of the powerpoint presentation that I found on your website, but would also be keen to hear more about your experiences of setting up such a service provision.  In the meantime, I will continue to explore your website. 
Kind Regards,
Matthew Adam
Senior Family Therapist
Huntercombe Hospital- Stafford
Ivetsey Bank
Wheaton Aston
ST19 9QT
Tel:  01785 840 000
Fax:  01785 842 191


September 15, 2010

Dear, Mr. Foster,

It was over 20 years ago that I trained with you in Florence as a staff member at the Dorchester Alcohol and Drug Commission.  I was fascinated by and have always remembered your balloon art creatures. I have recently returned to the A&D setting and would like your input into a discussion of the appropriate age of children to be included in the multiple family group process for Intensive Outpatients.  Could you direct me to some of the recent research literature regarding children in an addiction centered multiple family group therapy process?  Are you available for training and, if you are, could you forward that information as well.

Very truly yours,

Patricia F. Maderson, LISW, RPT-S, CACP
Doctoral Candidate in Psychology

June 17, 2010


Thank you very much for responding so promptly, and for offering to ask Paul Thorington about the tape circa 1978/79 recorded in Canada.

What a shame for Peter's legacy and the world of family therapy if his tapes can't be retrieved and preserved.  But, how wonderful that you and your colleagues carry on his formidable work.  He was remarkably brilliant - always several steps ahead of his esteemed audiences, and every inch the maestro.  He certainly wooed and wowed the biggest wigs in the field in Montreal, including but not limited to Herta Guttman, M.D., Director of the Family Therapy Program (where I was a student at the time) at the Jewish General Hospital's Department of Community and Family Psychiatry, and Douglas Betts, M.D., head of the residency program who also moved to Vermont. 

I'd be delighted to be on your mailing list and e-mail list.  Thanks for your kind offer.

Best regards,



June 17, 2010

I was so excited to receive and read your email.  I only know of a few people who met and learned from Peter in person.  So that makes you rare in the world of Multiple Family Group Therapy.
I have seen a few of the tapes that Peter and his wife Rea recorded, but I haven't come across the one you were in.  There were many tapes stored at the NY State Hospital, but I do not know if they are still there.  Our problem has been that there is no equipment to play them on today.  We have two of the old systems here in Florence, SC, but they have not been operational for ten years.  Attempts to have them repaired have not been successful.  I fear we may loose all the information on the tapes.
I'll call Paul Thorington in NH and ask him about the tape you speak of and get back to you.
Thanks again for your email and please keep in touch.  I'll put you on the mailing list and on the email list.
Lewis N. Foster


June 17, 2010


My name is Noreen M. Keenan Ph.D. and I live and work as a family therapist in Longwood, Florida, having moved from New York in 2008.

In 1978 (or it could have been 1979) I had the honor of attending one of Dr. Laqueur's multiple family group therapy workshops in Montreal, Quebec, Canada (where I'm from, and where at the time I worked as a social worker at a psychiatric in-patient facility).  In fact, he chose me (in my late 20s at the time) to be the "identified patient" who was 17 and in conflict about whether to be a prostitute or a nun (those were the days!).  The seminar and Dr. Laqueur were massively impressive.   Over the past 30 years, I have often thought about the day-long seminar, sponsored by Ville Marie Social Service Center, and how skilled, compassionate and effective Dr. Laqueur was, and I've often used his techniques and taught them to my students.

The seminar was video-tapped at the time.  I was wondering if it is at all possible to access the tape from your archives?  Family therapy has always been, and continues to be my main clinical passion. 

Thank you in advance for any consideration.

Noreen M. Keenan Ph.D.
1920 Boothe Circle Road
Longwood, Florida 32750



June 2, 2010

Dear Sirs,

I am a child and adolescent psychiatrist with more than a decade of experience in multifamily group therapy with families of patients in child and adolescent psychiatry. I used to work in Dresden (you fatrure one of our articles about the work done there, and was responsible for establishing and running the family day clinic there. Right now I'm the head of a department for child and adolescent psychiatry in a rural area and working on establishing a new family day clinic.

I would be pleased if you could send me your powerpoint presentation as well as putting me on the mailing list.

Best regards

Mit freundlichen Grüßen

Dr. med. Beate Schell
Klinik für Kinder- und Jugendpsychiatrie,
Psychosomatik und Psychotherapie
Fachklinikum Uchtspringe
Kraepelinstraße 6
39599 Uchtspringe/Altmark
Tel.:   039325-70302
Fax:    039325-70303

February 18, 2010

I would like to be on your e-mail list and also to receive the powerpoint that you have developed on MFGT.
Thank you.
Lawrence Haber, Ph.D.
Director, Family Resource Center
A Service for Families and Friends
Dealing with Mental Illness
The Institute of Living
Center Building, 1st Floor
200 Retreat Avenue
Hartford, CT 06106
[860] 545-7731 Office
[860] 545-7510 Fax



February 1, 2010

Thank up so much for all of these. A two hour video would be wonderful.  and I mad an OOPs - I had meant to say that Phill Collin gave us the training. But he was very good too. You might as well send the video to my work since that is where I will be using it. My Address is :
                               Mary Ann Brogan, CNS
                               VA Boston Healthcare System
                               Outpatient Clinic
                               251 Causeway Street 3rd fl
                               Boston, MA 02115

January 25, 2010

Hello - I am a Psychiatric Clinical Nurse Specialist and I work at the VA in Boston. I will be doing a presentation to Psychiatry residents and other students and clinicians about Family therapy for Consumers and families with Severe Mental Illness. I atended a training by Willliam Mc Farlane this past year.  One of the type of Family therapies I will present will be MFGT. I will also present an overview of Behavioral Family Therapy BFT, Family consultation and Family to Family by NAMI. Having a powerpoint presentation would be helpful because MFGT is one of the treatment modallities we want to establish at the Boston VA. What is th cost of getting this powerpoint presentation? I was impressed by your website and as I saw all the things that people had contributed for sharing, it felt very empowering. You may reach me at this Email or my work email which is Thank you and I look forward to hearing from you. Sincerely, Mary Ann Brogan

October 21, 2009

Hi Mr. Foster,
Thank you so much for sending the power points. I have found them very helpful in preparing for group. We have had a good experience so far. I will try to get back to you within a few days and give you a summary of our work so far with the group. Thanks for your help.
Sally Manner
My mailing address is:
Insight Human Services
665 West Fourth Street
Winston Salem, NC 27101


October 17, 2006

Bilingual Resource Specialist
NMHA Resource Center
National Mental Health Association Resource Center seeks a Bilingual Resource Specialist (Spanish/English) to respond to inquiries regarding mental health resources and referrals. Candidate must have excellent verbal, interpersonal, and written communication skills in Spanish and English languages, strong computer skills, and be patient, mature, able to remain calm while dealing with a variety of callers, detail-oriented, well organized, and a self-starter. BSW or BA degree in psychology, social work or related field strongly preferred. Two years work experience in a mental health setting preferred. Experience with telephone referral or help-line a plus. Please send cover letter/letter of interest, resume and short writing samples (one English, one Spanish) to Please type “Attn: RM” in the subject line. No phone calls please. EOE



September 15, 2006

Bilingual Resource Specialist
NMHA Resource Center
National Mental Health Association Resource Center seeks a Bilingual Resource Specialist (Spanish/English) to respond to inquiries regarding mental health resources and referrals. Candidate must have excellent verbal, interpersonal, and written communication skills in Spanish and English languages, strong computer skills, and be patient, mature, able to remain calm while dealing with a variety of callers, detail-oriented, well organized, and a self-starter. BSW or BA degree in psychology, social work or related field strongly preferred. Two years work experience in a mental health setting preferred. Experience with telephone referral or help-line a plus. Please send cover letter/letter of interest, resume and short writing samples (one English, one Spanish) to Please type “Attn: RM” in the subject line. No phone calls please. EOE

Internship Opportunities
The National Mental Health Association, a nonprofit organization addressing all aspects of mental health and mental illness, is seeking undergraduate and graduate students for its internship program. The program is designed to provide a unique opportunity for students to gain real-world work experience relevant to their academic and career goals. Internships are available in various programs and departments. Such as: Fundraising/Development, NAMHPAC, NCSTAC, Service and Policy Center, World Federation, Communications/Media and Publications Sales. See the internship program section of this web site for more details or to apply online. Other application options include sending a resume to NMHA/JDS, 2000 N. Beauregard Street, 6th Floor, Alexandria, VA 22311, a fax to (703) 684-5968, or an e-mail No phone calls please. EOE


August 30, 2006

The Center for Psychiatric Research is pleased to announce that we will
be offering CEUs/CMEs for our upcoming Family Psychoeducation Training
on September 12-14! 

If you have already registered and would like to receive a certificate
of completion, please e-mail me with your full name and credential as
you would like it to appear on the certificate.  If you have not yet
registered, please include this information on your registration sheet.

Thank you,
Katherine Endy

Administrative Associate
Center for Psychiatric Research/PIER Program
315 Park Ave



August 28, 2006

Hi Foster- I apologize if you have received this twice, but it appears my first e-mail is lost somewhere in cyberspace!  We finally have our adolescent IOP program up and running, and are looking for a 2-3 day workshop for 2-3 staff members on multifamily group therapy sometime late fall or winter.  We have $ and can travel.  Any ideas?  Thanks so much.  Matey Barker


August 25, 2006

Hi, your page about MFGT is great. I am running a MFG for families of people with eating disorders and wondered if you know of any good resources on this topic. Thanks.
Katey Lund, LCSW


August 2, 2006


I read and responded to your other email first, sorry.  When I am not running an after-school program for a bunch of kids in Sabine Parish,  I facilitate multi-family groups for kids in families through a Juvenile Justice grant that I wrote.  The Office of Youth Services is trying to reform its system by providing community based services to kids and families BEFORE we lock them up.  I have been doing the groups for a couple of years now.  I see a need to train other providers in this model.  I also work with a private non-profit called Project Celebration.  They provide community based services to domestic violence, sexual trauma survivors, substance abusers and a bunch of other folks.  We are partnering with the Northwestern State University Department of Addiction studies (Natchitoches Louisiana) to expand services and develop field placement experiences for the addictions students.

I could see a way to possibly get you over here to do some training.  We might also be able to hook you up with the Office of Addictive Disorders, as they are also going through reform efforts.  I know most of those folks, although I am not real thick with them as my work is more often with educational systems and mental health.

I would be interested in starting a chapter of NAMFGT, but I will need to research it a bit more.  I have a tendency to overload my boat.  I will go to the website and check it out.  A workshop in Louisiana would be very neat, I think I can help you pull it off.

James Wagley


June 15, 2006

NMHA National Office Employment Opportunities

Bilingual Resource Specialist, NMHA Resource Center

National Mental Health Association Resource Center seeks a Bilingual Resource Specialist (Spanish/English) to respond to inquiries regarding mental health resources and referrals.  Candidate must have excellent verbal, interpersonal, and written communication skills in Spanish and English languages, strong computer skills, and be patient, mature, able to remain calm while dealing with a variety of callers, detail-oriented, well organized, and a self-starter.  BSW or BA degree in psychology, social work or related field strongly preferred.  Two years work experience in a mental health setting preferred.  Experience with telephone referral or help-line a plus.  Please send cover letter/letter of interest, resume and short writing samples (one English, one Spanish) to  Please type "Attn: RM" in the subject line.  No phone calls please. EOE


May 31, 2006

The Resource Center held three MFGT workshops in NC and SC this month and 112 professionals received Basic Training in MFGT.  The evaluations were mostly good and everyone was exposed to the basics, tossed balls, climbed through hoops, held stuffed animals and tied a balloon animal.  Some participants even learned how to make a balloon flower.

Lewis N. Foster


April 28, 2006

Lew, it's been a long time since I have seen you. I am now in private practice (full time since 2001) and have not done groups in six years. I am teaching Introduction to Family Therapy at the School of Social Work, Washington University, St. Louis. I have the students do two of the exercises from Understanding Us  that I used at Provident as part of Building Recovering Families. I let the students know about Multiple Family Group Therapy and let them know that it is a "best practice" in treatment for various conditions. I am glad to have the web page because I can refer the students to it.

Thank you for keeping in touch.

 Peggy Keilholz



April 23, 2006

Dear Mr. Foster,

I am doing a case presentation on MFGT in my graduate level methods course in Social Work. I am interested in your effectiveness treating chemically dependent patients, can you refer me to an article that has tested MFGT in the treatment of chemically dependent patients?

 Thank you for your time,

 Elizabeth Geraghty, M.S.W. student at the University of Minnesota




April 19, 2006

I just stumbled across your web site.  Dr Helm (Child/Adolescent Psychiatrist) and me (Licensed Family Therapist) have been doing multi-family group as the central focus of our adolescent inpatient program for the past 10 years.  We started because of the incredibly brief stays that are now the norm and began informing families that if we admitted their child then they would have to also be part of the treatment process on a daily basis. Surprisingly, they began showing up  and we were a little stunned with the work these families did in the group setting.  Often we would leave group shaking our collective heads and wondering what just happened in there!  Over the years we have come to expect such "therapeutic moments" and see how quickly families become engaged.  Clearly things such as the "universality of experience" as well as "crisis driven events" work wonderfully at breaking through the typically entrenched systemic resistance.   Anyway, I didn't intend to rattle on, just thought I'd say Hi.

Don Willets LMHC
Lakeland, Fl


April 14, 2006

I just read the article titled, "Multiple-Family Therapy: A Model for Social Worker's at Children's Homes".  I am interested in purchasing the videotape as well as a copy of the orientation materials.  I conducted a MFG for 2 years as part of a two-week residential program for adolescents in crisis.  Despite my total lack of training, I became very enthusiastic about the group and am now interested in conducting MFG's from my private practice.  Any guidance and/or resources are greatly appreciated.  I am thrilled to have discovered the association for MFGT and the Resource Center.

Shannon Nosenzo, LMFT

Lemon Grove, CA 91945


April 3, 2006

Dear Mr. Foster,
We exchanged emails a few months ago.  Thank you for your response to my inquiry about training opportunities for MFGT.  I work for an agency called Child Guidance Resource Centers in the Philadelphia suburbs.  The agency had a "family-based" program that serves children and their families by providing state funded in-home family therapy to children that meet the admission requirements.  A few of my colleagues and I are interested in developing a multiple family group as an adjunct to the in-home family therapy that we provide.  I have read several articles, including yours, informing me of some of the protocols for developing a group.  I have also read much of Susan Dennison's book.  I am excited about beginning this adventure and have confidence in the value of MFGT.  One of the biggest challenges that the few colleagues and I will be facing is "selling" MFGT to the agency and the rest of our colleagues in order to establish a solid referral source. Do you know of any video material that could be used to help inform our agency and colleagues about the nature of MFGT.  Obviously, I want to inform them well so that they can then inform the families that they are working with in a confident way about MFGT.  If video is available, I think that it would greatly facilitate this teaching process.  I would appreciate any information that you can provide or direct me to. 
Thank you.
William Mayer

Child Guidance Resource Centers

2000 Old West Chester Pike

Havertown, PA 19083

484 454-8707


March 31, 2006

Thank you Lewis,

I will read through the articles and will likely send you one as well.  I am probably one of the only therapists/psychologists who use Multiple Family Group Therapy in Montreal, Canada.  The therapeutic group is for families of emotionally disturbed children and adolescents who have been referred to our Child & Adolescent Psychiatry outpatient department at the Jewish General Hospital.  It is an open-ended group of five families.  In some cases, the family can be multigenerational, including grandparents.  I have been leading this MFGT for about 20 years (of course, not with the same families) with excellent results for most of the families.

Best Regards,

Linda Greenberg



March 29, 2006

Job Opening at NMHA

Bilingual Resource Specialist, NMHA Resource Center

National Mental Health Association Resource Center seeks a Bilingual Resource specialist (Spanish/English) to respond to inquiries regarding mental health resources and referrals.  Candidate must have excellent verbal, interpersonal, and written communication skills in Spanish and English languages, strong computer skills, and be patient, mature, able to remain calm while dealing with a variety of callers, detail-oriented, well organized, and a self-starter.  BSW or BA degree in psychology/related field required.  Two years work experience in a mental health setting preferred.  Experience with telephone referral or help-line a plus.  Please send cover letter/letter of interest, resume and short writing samples (one English, one Spanish) to  Please type "Attn: RM" in the subject line.  No phone calls please. EOE



March 28, 2006

Good afternoon.


My name is JD Leslie, Individual Relations Manager for the Development Department, for National Mental Health Association.  We are a non-profit organization that is located in Alexandria, VA.  In the very near future we will have several job openings that we would like to post in your organization.  We would like to know if you have a bulletin board or a section in your organization that you would post our job postings.  Would you like us to e-mail you or fax you the list of job openings?  What would be the cost to post jobs with you or is it free?  Or do you have a website that we can post them up our self's?  How long will the job openings be posted for?  Thank you so much for all your help and we are looking forward to hearing from you.

JD Leslie

Individual Relations Manager, Development Department, NMHA

703-797-2583 or


March 23, 2006


Enjoyed the article on multi-family group therapy very much.  I am a graduate student at Michigan State University and will be doing a presentation with my group members on MFGT.  Is it possible to get a copy of the videotaped interview?  Is there other information or resources that would be beneficial to our presentation that you are aware of?  This presentation of course should be multi any information would be beneficial.  We love to have something creative to "capture" the attention of our audience for this 45 min. presentation.  Anything you could give/send this way would be most helpful and appreciated.  Please feel free to contact me via email, mail, or phone.

Thanking you in advance for your assistance.

Michelle MacArthur, Houghton Lake, MI 48629


November 22, 2005

Hi Lewis,

Great to see you on the web.  I attended your training at the NCFADS summer school in Wilmington, NC, a few years back.  I think you'll be happy to know that I've had a multi-family group up and running ever since.  I use it as a part of my adolescent substance abuse IOTP.  Thanks for all you do.  Please let me know of any upcoming trainings. 


Joseph (Joey) W. Dickson, MA, LPC, NCC

Adolescent and Family Therapist

New River Behavioral HealthCare

132 Poplar Grove Connector Rd. Suite B

Boone, NC 28607

(828) 264-8759

Fax (828) 262-5860



October 9, 2005


Bless your heart!  What an incredible MFGT website you have!  Here I am, working on my dissertation topic and I find this.  Some might call it coincidence, I say it's God working anonymously.

I am the mother of a 20 year old male with paranoid schizophrenia (childhood onset).  Given the frustrations, difficulties and dead ends we have encountered with his treatment, I have recently returned to school to pursue my Ph.D. in Family Therapy.  My dissertation topic is on multi-family group therapy with families of schizophrenics.

I only wish I had found this information when our son had his first psychotic break 7 years ago.  Between research and helping Tony navigate his treatment path, I realize how our health care system is greatly failing these adult patients.

I have a few questions:

1.  Are you aware of any family therapy research in schizophrenia being conducted in Texas presently....or anyplace else using MFGT?

2.  Is there a particular family therapeutic model you have found to be more effective?

I am currently working on a chapter on chronic mental illness and the impact of families for Dr. Dana Comstock's next edition of her textbook,  diversity in Development: Critical Contexts that Shape Our Lives and Relationships.  This textbook is geared towards mental health professionals.

My husband, a medical administrator, and I are working on an article on the lack of private long term residential treatment programs for adult schizophrenics, based on our experiences from dealing with our son for the American Academy of Medical Administrators and will be presenting the paper at the AAMA 2006 conference in Atlanta.  Quite frankly, we were astounded that private long term treatment seems to just stop after someone hits 19 years old.  We know there are state programs, but they are poorly funded and the patients more involved.

Any direction you could provide would be greatly appreciated.  This dissertation is not only necessary for my Phy.D., but it is part of my healing process.

Again, I can't thank you enough for your contribution to the field.  Your work has positively impacted many families.

Best Regards,

Jackie P. Parsons, M.Ed.,

Musial and Associates

San Antonio, Texas

(210) 865-4783


October 4, 2005

Bill McFarlane, MD, email


You might be interested to know that statewide implementation of psychoeducational MFGs are well underway in both New York and Michigan, with other sites also expanding use--five counties in Oregon, a research project at UCLA, VT, MD and NH, etc.  Finally it's catching on.  The interesting thing is that everyone has difficulty and skepticism about starting groups, and almost everyone gets to be wildly enthusiastic after about six months, worldwide--the experience is almost universal--hard to start, hard to stop is the essence of implementing MFGs.

Keep up the good work.

If anyone wants training in the model for severe mental illnesses, we're now gearing up to do more of that for well-organized agencies particularly.

Be well.


William R. McFarlane, MD
Director, Center for Psychiatric Research
Maine Medical Center
22 Bramhall Street
Portland, ME 04102
Telephone:  207-662-2091
Voicemail:  207-662-4348
Fax:  207-662-3300