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The May 2013 SVC-CAMFT Newsletter.

  May 2013  

Sacramento Valley Chapter

California Association of Marriage & Family Therapists

Newsletter Editor:  Heather Blessing, MFT Registered Intern

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Letter from the Board

Dear Happy CAMFTers,

Yes that is what was printed on the shirts of the SVC-CAMFT NAMI walking army this past Saturday.  It was quite the lovely day out for a stroll around William Land Park (three times). Truthfully though, I am impressed at the turn out of so many of us there. I won’t pop Catherine’s balloon BUT I will tell you that there were a few more than last year! Well done walkers, braving the heat and blistering pace of the event. The prize for the most adorable walker does to Althea’s grandson, that kid is a STAR!

Down to business, we’re 5 months into the year now and things are progressing nicely. I have had continuous dialogue with other MFTs licensed, interns and trainees about the landscape of the environment out there for those in private practice or those aiming to be in private practice. I can report that some insurance companies actually increased the reimbursement rate for LMFTs for the first time in at least five years. While the rate increase does not address the chronic shortfall of previous record low rates, it does bring some sunshine in for some of us AND may make the sun shine brighter for those of you on the path. Additionally, we continue to support CAMFTs efforts to qualify us as providers for Medicare and MediCal/Medicaid.

SVC CAMFT is the official host of the 2013 Annual Conference being held at the Grand Sheraton. If you have any thoughts or ideas on how we can or should represent ourselves, your assistance would be greatly appreciated. Please feel free to contact me at d.chadwick.thompson@gmail.com with ideas and/or your desire to volunteer.

To all of you whose academic career is winding down, congratulations, this is the month that many will get their official stamp of approval from their respective universities. My advice, take a few weeks, or even a month for yourself. You’ve worked hard and deserve some time off.

Hoping all of you allergy sufferers are getting some relief. Until next time.

Sincerely yours,

Chad Thompson


  This issue:

· Letter From the Board
· Legal Beagle
· April Presentation Summary
May Meeting Information
Upcoming Board Meetings
· NAMI Walk
· Special Feature
· Psyched about Books and Movies
· Advertising and Announcements
· Advertising Polcy for the Newsletter


Chad Thompson, MFT


Jill P. Lawler, MFT

Past President:
Eva Tak, MFT

Brad Gilbert, MFT Intern

Beverly Baldwin, MFT Intern

Dr. Linda Sessions, MFT

Althea Lee, MFT Intern

Program Chair:

Tracy Thomas

Assistant Program Chair:

Karla Amanda Brown
, MFT Intern
Hospitality Co-Chairs:

Carol Mahr, MFT

Kimberlie Flowers, MFT

Pre-License Chair:

Luis Gonzalez, MFT Intern

Volunteer Chair:

Catherine Zanzi, MFT Intern

Membership Co-Chairs:
Cheryl Cleveland, MFT Intern
Miriam Hernandez, MFT Intern

Newsletter Editor:

Heather Blessing, MFT Intern


Legal Beagle

dectective.pngWelcome to the section of the SVC-CAMFT newsletter, Legal Beagle written by Darlene Davis, LMFT. The chapter thought it would be helpful to keep you updated on new laws, legislative pursuits or actions, as well as ongoing legal and ethical dilemmas we all face in our career as Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists, Interns, and Trainees. Please feel free to ask questions that you have and I will do my best to investigate and post your answer in the newsletter. Please note that articles are based on information from CAMFT and/or the BBS and have been researched to the best of my ability. This is not meant to be legal advice.  Please contact CAMFT or Board of Behavioral Sciences for any legal matters you need assistance for.

Writing reports:

At HOPE Counseling Center the question of writing reports for clients happens on a regular basis. Besides giving my usual answer, “it depends” I have created parameters for writing reports that I speak to in this article. There was also a recent article in The Therapist magazine (March/April 2013) edition worth reading from an attorney’s perspective. Most of the time these requests are from a parent of a child but we also receive requests from the adult client that may need the report for probation, work, disability, etc. I try, as a supervisor, to balance the FEAR of “oh my gosh court is involved”, with the REALITY that, “oh my gosh court is involved”. How do we address the fear in a way that changes it to awareness and address the reality into responsibility?

AWARENESS is being conscious, knowing, and realizing your situation. If I am in this knowing and conscious state than I am in control of making a decision. If a client or parent of a client asks for a report I decide what I would say, whether it’s in the best interest of my client, and whether I am qualified to say anything at all. In my private practice I state in my consent form the following:

I will not voluntarily participate in any litigation, or custody dispute in which client and another individual, or entity, are parties.  I have a policy of not communicating with client’s attorney and will generally not write or sign letters, reports, declarations, or affidavits to be used in a legal matter unless agreed upon at beginning of the therapeutic relationship.  I will generally not provide records or testimony unless compelled to do so. 

Does this mean I never write a letter? No. I have over the years written letters that follow these parameters:

  • 1.     Name of client
  • 2.     Date and number of sessions attended (I may list sessions missed if important)
  • 3.     My credentials
  • 4.     Goals agreed upon with client
  • 5.     How we have addressed these goals. This included what client reports and what I observe in session.
  • 6.     If a diagnosis is mandatory such as for disability reports I will include. I need to be sure of the diagnosis and be able to substantiate if needed.
  • 7.     If there is a need to respond to prognosis and if I decide to comment I will include substantiated research in the letter so that it is not my opinion.  

RESPONSIBILITY is the part of my job in supporting my client in meeting their goals and improving functioning in their daily lives. This does not include making opinions on custody issues, work abilities, or whether they are “cured of their anger” to name a few. On the other hand I remember a colleague stating she was terrified to write a report on behalf of her minor client(s). The minors were reporting fear of a parent. Other colleagues began to share their fear of writing reports and I began to think about who would be the voice of these minors if not us? Of course if it meets the threshold of child abuse reporting laws then there is no question. In cases of a minor needing a voice then I use the same guidelines as mentioned above if I decide to write a report. I make sure I am factual and objective based only on what is reported in session. I make no opinion on whether a parent is “good” or “bad” or whether a child should live with one parent or another.

Michael Griffin, staff attorney for CAMFT wrote in the March/April edition of The Therapist magazine a list of questions to ask yourself before considering writing a report. They include:

  • 1.      What is the specific nature of the request?
  • 2.      What does the requesting person want from you?
  • 3.      Are you reluctant to respond to the request? Why?
  • 4.      What does the request have to do with your role as a therapist?
  • 5.      Are there any reasons that you should not honor the particular request?
  • 6.      Do you feel pressured or compelled to honor the request? Is so, why?
  • 7.      Is it appropriate to provide the information that is being requested?
  • 8.      Are you qualified to address the particular issue?

These are great questions that will bring forth the awareness and responsibility that can take the place of fear and reality. 

Darlene Davis, LMFT
Executive Director HOPE; Healthy Outcomes for Personal Enrichment
MFT Stipend Coordinator for Greater Sacramento
Instructor of University of Phoenix


  April Presentation Summary

Emotionally Focused Therapy
Our guest speaker for the April presentation was Jennifer Olden, MFT, who is certified in EFT (Emotionally Focused Therapy by Sue Johnson.)  Ms. Olden provided information on the background of EFT, which is based on attachment theory and has the goal of building a more secure relationship with your partner.  She covered how to initiate a safe, caring relationship with the couples you are working with, the four attachment styles, and the importance of normalizing healthy relationship needs.  This hopeful approach is validated by research.

Ms. Olden invited participants to consider primary and secondary emotions.  She gave concrete examples of reframing the emotions of anger and fear to help couples understand their partner's needs, and bond with each other better.    She encouraged attunement and a collaborative approach of asking tentative questions, as well as providing genuine feedback about the courage it takes for partners to be honest and express their needs.  This approach focuses on safety and trust, helping each other when partners feel scared and anxious, and feeling cherished and accepted in their relationship for who they are.

Several parts of this workshop were interactive, and this appeared to be well-received among those in attendance.  Participants were invited to break up into pairs and practice interventions together, after watching videos that provided examples of tasks.  A handout was also provided addressing common underlying emotions, statements from withdrawers and pursuers, and several preliminary stages and steps of EFT.   Ms. Olden provided information on local resources for counselors that desire to learn more about EFT.  She can be reached at Jennifer@jenniferolden.com for more information, and welcomes a visit to www.eftsupervisor.com for further information about trainings, etc.

Submitted by
Patricia Allison MFT


May Meeting Information
Pre-license Meeting

Date: Friday, May 10, 2013, 8:30 am-9:15 am

Location: University of Phoenix, 2860 Gateway Oaks Drive, Sacramento 95833, in the Training Room 303

Speaker: TBD

Topic: Get an idea of how to "PREPARE" for Premarital Couples, and "ENRICH," Married Couples.
"For over thirty years, PREPARE/ENRICH has been the #1 guide for helping couples explore and strengthen their relationships.  Built on a solid research foundation, PREPARE/ENRICH has been improved and refined over the years to become one of the best, most effective, easy-to-use relationship assessment tools available."

Those who attend will receive one additional workshop hour.

General Meeting

Date: Friday, May 10, 2013 from 9:30 to Noon 

Location: University of Phoenix, 2860 Gateway Oaks Drive, Sacramento 95833 (Map)

Speaker: Florence A. Soares-Dabalos, MS, LMFT

Topic: Emotional Intelligence Workshop

Attend this engaging workshop to learn how Emotional Intelligence(EQ), the culmination of research on brain functioning, learning processes, and relational styles, is possible a better predictor of success than IQ. EQ is the skill set necessary to create optimal relationships with self and others. This workshop will cover the basic knowledge of Emotional Intelligence, how to recognize behavioral and emotional patterns, and how to utilize EQ skills in the decision making process for maximum success. Participants will learn EQ tools to apply to their own lives as well as the lives of their clients

We encourage early registration as space is limited.

  Click here to register.

Cost: Pre-register: $15 stu/interns, $20 SVC-CAMFT memb, $30 non-memb., +$5 "at-door" registration. Inclu. Cont brkfst. & 2 CEUs. No cc's at door. Reserv req'd by May 7th-Laura (916) 350-1577, email:membership@sacramentovalleycamft.org or reg,pay, directions at http://www.sacramentovalleycamft.org. 
 Free, pre-licensed training from 8:30 to 9:15 at the same location (different room) for 1 additional CEU.

Reservations required: You can register and pre-pay online at www.sacramentovalleycamft.org, or contact Laura Frederick at (916) 350-1577 or email membership@sacramentovalleycamft.org to register and pay at the door. Please help us contain the cost of presentations by making reservations in a timely manner (by Tuesday before the meeting). This is much appreciated.

*Disclaimer: University of Phoenix is a trade name and registered trademark of the Apollo Group, Inc. Its use herein by SVC- CAMFT to identify the event location is not intended to imply affiliation with, sponsorship or endorsement of the event by University of Phoenix or Apollo Group, Inc.

Upcoming Board Meetings

All members are invited to attend.

June 21, 2013 at 12:30 pm at Ettores on Fair Oaks Boulevard across the street from Loehman’s Plaza

August 16, 2013 from 9:00am-11:00am at 3550 Watt Avenue in Sacramento CA 95821 (Watt and Whitney)

October 18, 2013 immediately following the Training Session.




I truly enjoyed the NAMI Walk, and I am so happy that so many of you all participated in some way. Whether you donated money, solicited donations, or walked with us, your involvement is very much appreciated!!

Our SVC-CAMFT Team more than doubled our participation and donations from last year!
We are looking forward to having an even larger presence at next year's NAMI Walk. Here's to 2014!!

Hope to see you at our next Sac Valley CAMFT Meeting!
Thank you again,
Catherine Zanzi



Special Feature
Part 3 of 3
The Quest for Peace...and happiness~
Juli Alvarado, MA, LPC, NCC

The work in Personal Creation, or as others may call attraction, is not a selfish work, it is the work of a servant first.  It is through service to others that the self is most elevated, expanded and given the opportunity for evolution.

If you want to bring abundance to you in order to be happier, help others achieve abundance first; yours will follow.

If you want to bring healing to your life so that you may be more healed, help others find healing first, yours will follow.  I so know this to be true.

"We are all connected. All living things are connected. Nothing in the universe happens without affecting everything else in the universe in some way. Everything you do matters, everything."

If every living being treated every other living being as if it were the divine creation that it is, we would all be treated divinely. There would be no more war or suffering. BIG thought I know; but not too big for you. Treat others divinely and treat yourself the same. It is a start toward something big, something needed.

You were made to make manifest the glory of God through who you are. God is good, the divine creator of all things, God is the creator, the energy, the infinite power that caused us to be, and is waiting for you to get Happy so you can bring Happy to others. 

When we make God into a religious or specific spiritual deity, we lose touch with the God who is infinitely wiser, bigger and more graceful than any one religion or spiritual belief would have you adopt. God is much bigger than any of us or any group of us.

You cannot give away that which is not yours to give. If you are not happy, you cannot bring happy to another~God needs you to be Happy and in Peace so that you can continue to do God’s work~

What you do for another you do for yourself. What you fail to do for another, you fail to do for yourself.

Until all members of our profession become willing to undergo this evolutionary transformation to a mindfully based and trauma informed paradigm to bring Peace and Happiness, we cannot proclaim to be capable of helping others get there.

As we each deliberate into the depth of who we are, mind/body/spirit, and proclaim our own spiritual need for healing and cognitive need for understanding the true impact of trauma to the human psyche we will continue to offer a biochemical remedy to what ails parts of us untouched by medications.

You CAN get Happy and you CAN find Peace. If you need help, reach out; not any differently than each of you would gently encourage your clients to do.

Peace, Love, Healing and Happiness,


Juli Alvarado, MA, LPC, NCC is the Founder/Director of Coaching for LIFE!, LLC
For more on our mindfully based and trauma informed paradigm for healing visit her at
Coaching for Life provides monthly teleconferences in Integrative Healing of Trauma for no charge. You can register at the website.

The views expressed in the Special Feature Articles do not necessarily reflect the Sacramento Valley Chapter of CAMFT or CAMFT. They should be understood as the personal opinions of the author. No information in this articles will be understood as official.  Other views and commentary are welcome and will be published as long as they are respectful and stick to the topic.

Psyched about Books and Movies
Welcome to "Psyched about Books and Movies!"  Each month we include a book or movie review by one of our readers.  Please see below guidelines on submitting a review.  Happy reading!

Title:  Theraplay: Helping Parents and Children Build Better Relationships Through Attachment Based Play

Author: Phyllis B. Booth

Date Released:  2010

Reviewer:  Heather Blessing, MFT Intern

Review:  If you have clients that are new to parenthood or struggling with connecting with their child, this book helps you learn about "Theraplay" which is a style of therapy that allows for play between a parent and child that helps with bonding.  This book has a lot of information and explanations within and yet easy to understand.  At first glance you might think you could only do this type of therapy with small children but the author also explains and gives examples of how to even use this model with teens.  This book could be helpful for a therapist to assist a parent with an autistic child, special needs child, step child, foster child, adoptive child or even a child that they did not have a strong connection with due to other circumstances.  I found this book easy to read, easy to use and refer back to when working with families.  The ideas presented in the book are inexpensive and easy to do.


Book/Movie Review Submission Policy

All reviews are not to exceed 1000 key strokes.
Your review should include the title, a short synopsis about why you like or dislike it, and the author’s name & publication date. You can also include a picture of the book and/or movie. After review, we will publish your review in our next newsletter. Reviews submitted that are longer than 1000 characters will be returned for editing. It is best to type your review in a Microsoft Word document to note how many key strokes (characters with spaces), how big your review is, and for your own record keeping. You can then copy and paste it into the online submission form located here (
http://www.sacramentovalleycamft.org/Newsletter.html) To learn more about checking your review for key strokes, spelling grammer and size click below: (http://www.sacramentovalleycamft.org/How_to_check_review_in_microsoft_word.doc).

It is your responsibility to check for spelling and grammar errors.  Reviews must be received by the 20th of the month in order to appear in the next newsletter. You can submit your review by: Visiting our webpage: www.sacramentovalleycamft.org

Mailing it in: P.O. Box 163385, Sacramento, CA 95816


Advertising and Announcements

A newly remodeled  first-floor office suite conveniently located in Roseville offers a few offices for rent at reasonable cost.  Available are offices from 150 sq. ft. to 200 sq. ft.  The suite has a well-appointed waiting room and a break room with refrigerator, microwave, coffee maker and bottled water.  Rest rooms are in the building common area.  Rents range from $600/mo. to $750/mo.  If interested contact Susan Johnson LMFT at 530-210-9349 or susanjmft@gmail.com.

Are You Ready to Graduate or Newly Graduated and Struggling with Navigating the Path to Licensure?  Join us Saturday, June 8th, from 9am-4pm for an interactive workshop on how to navigate the road to licensure!
You will get support and feedback from fellow MFT trainee and interns as well as hands on practice of important skills such as resume development, interviewing skills and learning how to manage the nerves associated with starting out in the field.
Workshop objectives to include: Do’s and Don’ts of resume writing; Increasing confidence around interviewing skills; Implementing positive interviewing techniques; Learning to manage nerves and worries about the licensure journey.
Training will be held at 2860 Gateway Oaks Dr, Sacramento, CA 95833 from 9am-4pm for only $65.  Continental breakfast included.

Contact Kami Storck, MFT 916.837.0197 or Anna Osborn, MFT 916.955.3200 for registration information or visit www.sactowncounseling.com.  Pre-registration required.


INTEGRATIVE COUPLES THERAPY CONSULTATION GROUP, offered by Sally Weiler, L.C.S.W.  Modalities include systems, psychodynamic, emotional focus, cultural and social influences and much more.  Group meets every other Tuesday 3-4:15 p.m.  Cost is $50 per session. Please call 916-446-6257 for more information and a complimentaryconsultation.  PLEASE NOTE: Cases involving an individual with a relationship issue are welcome for presentation.


PAID INTERNSHIP - Join our exciting and growing practice at CHC. We are looking for interns as well as a business/marketing manager #1) - MFTI/ASW/PCCI interns [Employee position]- Individual, Couples, and Group therapy. Skype therapy. Leading workshops. Must have strong desire to grow your practice and network. Hourly wage plus bonus (based on revenue). We pay for online and print marketing expenses.


#2 - Business and Marketing Development Manager(10 hours per week, $8 hr, Employee) - Help us design effective campaigns and learn valuable skills. Gain resume experience for future pursuits in health care or business / marketing.

Click link for webpage specific to opportunity, and follow the application process. jwilfong@cypressholistic.com   http://cypressholistic.com/jobs/ 


Advertising Policy for the Newsletter

All ads and reviews are not to exceed 1000 key strokes. Chapter members advertise at no cost. Non-members can advertise about employment opportunities at no cost. Non-members, non employment-related ads follow these rates:


$10 for 200 key strokes

$20 for 201-600 key strokes

$30 for 601-1000 key strokes

Full page and ½ page ads are not accepted.


All ads contain text only; no graphics will be included.

Ads submitted that are longer than 1000 characters will be returned for editing. It is best to type your ad in a Microsoft Word document to note how many characters, how big your ad is, and for your own record keeping. Please visit our site to find more information on how to use Microsoft word for editing. You can then copy and paste it on our online submission form located here (http://www.sacramentovalleycamft.org/Newsletter.html)

It is your responsibility to check for spelling and grammar errors.


Ads must be received by the 25th of the month in order to appear in the next newsletter. Ads are placed in the order that they are received.


You can submit and pay for your ad by:


Visiting our webpage: www.sacramentovalleycamft.org

Mailing in payment: P.O. Box 163385, Sacramento, CA 95816

Emailing the Newsletter Editor: newslettereditor@sacramentovalleycamft.org

Thank you for contributing to the newsletter!

Copyright © 2013 {Organization_Name}. All rights reserved.
Contact email: {Organization_Contact_Email}

Contact us mail: P.O. Box 163385, Sacramento, CA 95816
Phone: (916) 350-1577
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