The Brief Therapy Institute of Sydney (BTIS) is a centre in Sydney's western suburbs — committed to being a "centre of excellence" for practice, training and supervision in Solution Focused Brief Therapy practice and applications of "the strengths perspective". We are committed to Solution Focused Brief Therapy (psychotherapy/counselling), but also to the application of Solution Focused ideas in broader contexts — coaching, leadership, school welfare and discipline, management, supervision and organisational settings.
We are the leading provider of Solution Focused training and consultation in Australia. Michael Durrant was honoured to have a close personal friendship with a number of the founders of the Solution Focused approach — particularly Steve de Shazer, Eve Lipchik and Insoo Kim Berg. The Brief Therapy training and consultation we offer stands proudly on the shoulders of Steve de Shazer, Insoo Kim Berg and Eve Lipchik, Brian Cade, and others.
Many people in Australia and New Zealand who identify themselves as Solution Focused practitioners have begun their Solution Focused journey in BTIS training, conducted by Michael Durrant. As well as the 200 or more people who attend our Solution Focused training courses each year, we have provided Leadership training for staff working with preschools and special-needs children in South-east Queensland and agencies in New Zealand, supervision training for welfare agencies in Mt Gambier (in rural South Australia), for the Victorian child protection department and for a large rural welfare agency in western and north-western NSW, training in Solution Focused Brief Therapy for counsellors and caseworkers in a family welfare agency in Darwin and a child protection agency in inner-city Sydney, as well as many other agencies. Michael has conducted SFBT training for adult and child & adolescent mental health staff in various NSW local health districts, ACT health and five New Zealand District Health Boards. We have worked with the whole staff of a primary school in New Plymouth, New Zealand, the staff of a number of high schools in western Sydney, rural NSW and Auckland, as well as with high-performance coaches at the New Zealand Institute of Sport. These looked at how Solution Focused ideas help us promote what is best in students or athletes (rather than figuring out how to "fix" what is wrong). We worked with an adolescent sexual offenders program in the wilds of Montana, USA and have conducted training for educational psychologists and school personnel in London.
The Brief Therapy Institute of Sydney offers a range of services:
- A program of professional training in Solution Focused practice and applications of the strengths perspective. Training includes one- and two-day courses held in Parramatta — also in Adelaide, Melbourne and Central West NSW. We also provide Solution Focused training elsewhere in Australia (currently Perth, Darwin, Brisbane, Toowoomba, Cairns, Townsville, Ballarat, Bendigo, Port Macquarie, Albury and Newcastle) through our friends at Compass Seminars.
- Professional supervision for counselling, education and human services professionals who wish to further their skills and experience in Solution Focused Brief Therapy and/or in "strengths-based" approaches to working. We have experience providing supervision to individual practitioners — either on a "one-off" case consultation basis or on an ongoing basis — and in providing external supervision to teams within the mental health, adolescent and family, school and alternate care settings.
- "Customised" and workplace training — any of the Institute's training courses can be provided onsite at your workplace or agency for a group of employees and we work with you to "customise" the program so that it meets the particular needs of your organisation.
- Consultation in program development and management is available for organisations who are developing more of a strengths focus in their work and wish to explore its implications for organisation and management.
- Therapy — Our counselling or therapy services at the Brief Therapy Institute of Sydney are limited at the moment. Michael and Frances are not able to accept therapy referrals at present. Our Associates (see About us) can be contacted for therapy services.
Training information for 2024 is available HERE.
Michael was privileged to be the speaker (online) at a recent meeting of the Australasian Solution Focused Association. The topic was "The power of description: BEYOND the miracle question". The video of the presentation is available HERE and the slides and other resources are available HERE.
During the COVID lockdown, we offered free webinars in aspects of Solution Focused work, and were grateful that various of our international friends took part in these. The webinars were recorded and are available for viewing (and additional resource material is available) HERE.
- Solution Focused conversations with people considering suicide.
- Solution Focused work with family violence.
- ... and others.
Our (roughly) monthly webinars MIGHT resume in 2024. Join our mailing list to hear about future webinars.
Associates of BTIS
Associates are close colleagues with whom we have a close professional relationship and who we particularly respect as Solution Focused practitioners. While they operate independently, they agree to be identified with the Institute. Our current Associates are Ian Johnsen, David Hains and Emma Burns. See the team HERE.