The Grief and Loss Professional Training Program

“What really matters is not schools of therapy, but the psychotherapists (healers) themselves… The healer is someone who identifies past and present conflicts and deficits, not in order to resolve, but to transcend them. He accepts the person with all his limitations, at the same time as he does not settle for that as an end in itself. …The healer believes in a model of health , which is normative and transcends diagnoses… He doesn’t follow standardized procedures in operational manuals that homogenize all treatment. Rather, the approach used is highly improvisational, and fully accepts, if not promotes, heterogeneity.”

T. Byram Karasu, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry at Albert Einstein College of Medicine


Developed in 2010, we have been pleased to offer a Training Program for Professional Caregivers to a limited number of professionals who want to explore their own physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual blocks in order to be better able to attend to their clients’ (or patients’, or congregants’) struggles.

Our philosophy is that caregivers who continue to plumb their own emotional depths are better equipped to attend and hold another’s pain.

The Professional Caregiver’s Program is designed to include training in both the “externalization” (gestalt) technique that we use at Grief and Loss Workshops and training in the “What” and “Why” of the weekend format.

It is structured in three stages, over 3 weekends. Previous attendance at a Growth and Transition workshop will be required.

Through this experiential training process, participants will deepen their knowledge of family of origin, boundary, and relationship issues.

It is our hope that this safe and respectful group experience will facilitate a broader spectrum of emotional insight, as well as a wiser perspective on the universality of pain.

We view this work as a spiritual journey, with the potential to open us to deeper compassion, empathy, and humility.


  • To pass on the physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual elements of the Growth and Transition workshops to another generation of facilitators, stressing the incorporation of the living, evolving nature of this type of process.
  • To underscore the professional caregiver’s obligation to continue his/her own growth work as a necessary means to helping others, and to provide a safe, non-judgmental space in order for that to happen.
  • To teach the various elements of the gestalt technique we have called “externalization”, and to discuss how aspects of this process can be used in various settings.
  • To teach the rudiments of the interpretation of spontaneous drawings, as originally explored by Gregg M. Furth, PhD.
  • To discuss elements of transference and counter transference in the group/workshop setting, as well as other aspects of Irving Yalom and Corey and Corey’s theories of group dynamics.
  • To review the teachings, and their philosophical underpinnings, taught at the workshop.
  • To understand the roles of externalization and the weekend process in combating addictions.
  • Build a referral list of therapists around the country who support process oriented work.

There is no light without shadow. There is no psychic wholeness without imperfection.

C.G. Jung

Tucson Medical Center sponsors the Training Program with 27 CEUs available per weekend for individuals who qualify. Continuing Education Units will be available after the third weekend component of the program, unless specific exceptions have been granted.

Please Check the Schedule for Upcoming Programs