The Calgary Family Therapy Centre offers a specialized clinical program under the umbrella of Wood's Homes supported by the Calgary Health Region in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

The Calgary Family Therapy Centre, formerly known as the University of Calgary Family Therapy Program was established in 1973. It is a clinical outpatient treatment program which provides specialized services in family therapy. Approximately 500 families are seen per year, including a wide range of types of families and presenting problems which provide a rich resource for clinical training experiences. The Program also provides ongoing teaching and serves as a base for conceptual research in family therapy. It is supported by excellent physical facilities including multiple interviewing rooms equipped with one-way mirrors, telephone intercoms, and remote-control videotape cameras.

The orientation for the Program, in terms of the theoretical framework and methods of practice, has changed several times. During its 32 years the Calgary Program has been at the leading edge of the field of family therapy and has continuously been involved in exploring, developing and applying new patterns of therapeutic thought and action.

The Centre is located in Calgary, a vibrant Western Canadian city with a population of approximately 900,000. It is only one hour by car from the beautiful Canadian Rocky Mountains and Banff National Park which offer world class hiking, camping, climbing and sight-seeing.

 Purpose of Program
The Program provides family therapy services. Professional therapists work with families whose children are experiencing emotional or behavioral problems, with the primary goal being to enable these families to develop their own methods of managing these problems more effectively.

Therapy Process
The orientation of the Program is specialized in that the major emphasis is placed on working with the family group rather than with individuals. The initial task is to define the nature of the problem(s) as clearly as possible. Thus all members of the household are usually asked to attend the first interview and each member is encouraged to share her or his view of the problem. After therapy is started, interviews may continue with the family as a whole or may be arranged for parts of the family. Several therapeutic approaches are utilized in the Program. Each situation is assessed and the most appropriate approach(es) determined for that family. On the average, families attend five to eight sessions of one to two hours duration. The time intervals between sessions vary from one to four weeks.

Therapy Team
The therapy team is composed of professionals from a variety of disciplines. It includes psychiatrists, social workers, psychologists and post graduate trainees in these disciplines, all of whom have a specialized interest and skill in family therapy. Each family is engaged by a specific team member who carries primary responsibility for therapy with that family. During the course of the therapy, the primary therapist may seek input from other team members through discussion, supervision or consultation. In this way the special expertise of other team members may be drawn on and the family may have the benefit of several opinions even though they may have seen only one or a few team members.

 Teaching and Research
Because the Program is part of the Faculty of Medicine at the University, families may be invited to participate in teaching or research activities by having interview(s) videotaped or observed through a one-way screen. The family's explicit consent is always sought before such participation with the understanding that the family may refuse without prejudice. The Program staff and trainees assume the responsibility to respect the privacy of the family and to treat all information as highly confidential and part of the family's medical file.

Medical Responsibility
Physicians are not routinely involved. Only family therapy is provided by the Program. Psychiatric consultation may be arranged by the primary therapist when indicated but family members should consult their family physician in regards to any medical problems and for ongoing medical care.

Referral Procedure
Any family who is experiencing emotional or behavioral problems may phone the Program directly. Usually the Program works with families who are most concerned about the symptoms of family members who are 18 years of age or younger. Alternately the family may be referred by any community resource (e.g. physicians, teachers, social agencies) either by telephone or in writing.

There is no out-of-pocket charge to families seen in the Program since it is funded by the Alberta Mental Health Board of the Department of Health and Wellness of the Government of Alberta. Psychiatrists bill the Alberta Health Care Insurance Commission.

8:30 am - 6:00 pm MST Monday to Thursday 8:30 am - 4:00 pm MST Friday. Occasionally evening appointments may be negotiated but the majority of the appointments are scheduled within usual working hours. Each therapist schedules his/her own appointments. To minimize scheduling difficulties, families are requested to keep appointments whenever possible. We ask that at least two days advance notice be given if it is essential that an appointment be cancelled or rescheduled.

Location of Program
The Program is located on the 6th floor of One Executive Place. The mailing address is:

Calgary Family Therapy Centre
600 - 1816 Crowchild Trail NW
Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T2M 3Y7
Telephone: (403) 802-1680
Fax: (403) 270-7446

Program Information Sheet

You can download a copy of the Family Therapy Program Information Sheet.

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Calgary Family Therapy Centre information Sheet

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