• Conference Participant

    “What didn’t I enjoy about the conference? I had been feeling very drained this past week. But after being at the conference yesterday, I felt my cup was full again. I was surrounded by like-minded people. I loved how we were openly talking about how we could help our students, regardless of age, from the little ones up to our adult students, to become liberated and to heal.

    “I loved the vibe of the room. Humans are humans, and we need to love each other and treat each other as such. [After attending the conference] I feel I can encourage, lift and help teachers meet the needs of their students in love. And help them develop skills and break the cycle of trauma and hurt and harm and violence and turn that into love and acceptance and tolerance. There is a lot I am taking from the conference.”

    Conference Participant
  • Student appreciation

    “Thank you to everyone for presenting the work you do and allowing us to see a specific case study and how the model itself works to support clients. I feel there is a lot that can be used through the different aspects of liberation based healing practices that can help many different populations in the struggles they’re going through. I can honestly say I’ve taken several different things from today’s presentation that I hope to implement in my current work and practice for the future as well. Thank you again for everything! You all were awesome!!”

    Student appreciation
  • Student appreciation

    “Thank you Dr. Almeida, Emilia, Alexis, Lakeisha, and Eunjung! You all were wonderful and it was great to learn from your insight and knowledge. Liberation Based Healing has been intriguing to me since I learned about it this semester so to see a case study as a visual representation of your work was very beneficial for me. I really appreciated when Dr. Almeida mentioned that it’s important to separate the person from the problem. This separation helps create that space as you all mentioned which is beneficial. I do hope to continue learning about liberation based practices and how they can be incorporated into my future work. I definitely see it as a better alternative than some of the standard practices we are taught to use.”

    Student appreciation
  • Student appreciation

    “Thank you again Dr. Almeida, Lakeisha, Emilia, Alexis, Eunjung (I hope i’m not forgetting anyone lol) for coming into our class space and sharing with us all the work that y’all have been doing. I am so empowered and inspired by the liberation based healing practices framework and want to learn more about how i can adopt aspects of that in my work. I think something you all highlighted about the problem being the problem and not the individual was powerful because it takes the burden of healing on your own off the individual. I LOVE that the healing and learning is done collectively. Thank you all for the knowledge, i appreciate it! <3 -marilinda g.”

    Marilinda G
    Student appreciation
  • Student appreciation

    “I really loved seeing (visually) how liberation-based healing practices work. But I especially loved how a few of the facilitators talked about how much they had to unlearn themselves in order to participate in these circles. It really reminds me of the idea of institutional infiltrators–facilitators who are disrupting the “norm” in order to promote radical love and healing.”

    Student appreciation
  • Student appreciation

    “I really appreciate the perspective that Dr. Almeida has and the work she is doing within social work because it is incredibly needed. Everything within this field and within social services are so individualized and just reinforce that idea that everything is on you and nothing can be at a level higher than that. It is incredibly frustrating to see how that is absolutely everywhere and it’s incredibly incredibly sad and disappointing to see that mindset perpetuated within this program from faculty, from students so to talk about how to actually address the root causes and that everything is not completely on you that it is structures within our society that end up causing so much damage that ends up being carried on through each consecutive generation that no matter how well you do on the individual level the next generation is going to just get shafted because nothing was done do address what set off the problem in the first place. What stood out so much was to hear that students just want to hear from the professor and not from each other, when we are learning this exact information about externalization and that once we graduate we are going to be learning from our peers that to have that push back doesn’t make sense. I’m just so tired of everything put on the individual, and having to consider cost to benefit means tested market BS instead of just helping people.”

    Student appreciation
  • Liberation-based healing practices

    “My name is Dr. J. Corey Williams, MD. My colleague and I at Georgetown have become very interested in your work surround Liberation-based Healing. Over the course of the last year, we have started a reading and discussion group focused on liberation-based healing practices to begin interrogating how liberation can be applied to our clinical practices. Our group had been a powerfully reflective space and we have been eager to share what we have learned with other groups.”

    Dr. J. Corey Williams, MD
    Liberation-based healing practices
  • Life outside work

    “I thought I came here for therapy. What I received was a gift of life that included learning how to be a man in today’s world both in my home and at work. I feel more loved at home and my work colleagues describe me as more caring and competent than ever.”

    Life outside Work
    Racial and gender diversity
  • Expanding definitions of courage and masculinity

    “I never imagined that learning new notions of masculinity such as expanded emotionality, embracing femininity, balancing work and family life, embracing relatedness over individualism, valuing collaboration, maintaining flexibility, valuing shared power of relatedness, could make a better and more courageous man.”

    Expanding Definitions of Courage and Masculinity
    Racial and gender diversity
  • A different view of desegregation

    “I was shocked to hear a bunch of white, Indian and Latino and Black men talking about racism in the workplace at my third session! What I discovered, though I never expected it, was a mutual sense of respect and care that I did not believe could exist in a mixed race circle.”

    A Different View of Desegregation
    Racial and gender diversity
  • Intersectionality of spirituality and family life

    “I have always struggled to bridge the teachings of our scriptures with fairness in the lives of women, our lives. Here we were able to integrate the powerful readings and forces of Goddesses in Hinduism, and bring their relevance to bear on daily life. It was also healing to share this with the circle of women from different cultures and hav…”

    Intersectionality of Spirituality and Family Life
    Racial and gender diversity
  • Special appreciations to IFS

    “Thank you, everyone, for my wonderful celebration on Saturday and the thoughtful and generous gift you gave me. I had a great time and my husband and I look forward to trying these restaurants near our new home! I forgot to ask…who wrote the poem that accompanied my gift?

    A special thank you to the two special friends who volunteered to organize and host this special event! The food was delicious and the company was terrific. I had a little trouble during our ritual, hearing what everyone had to say about me and my time at IFS, but I let the group know and they were very patient with me. Their sentiments meant a lot to me and touched my heart greatly.

    I also want to acknowledge our special junior hostess for her precious hand-made card and the thoughtful shoe bags she asked her grandmother to make for me. Thank you also to our sole male attendee and host for his very special card.

    Below is something I shared with those who were there so that those who couldn’t attend can also hear my gratitude:

    To borrow from Charles Dickens, “It’s [been] the best of times and the worst of times…

    When I first became part of this community,
    My children were at risk,
    My marriage was failing,
    My family was broken,
    And I was lost.

    Then, I found the team and all of you.
    You taught me to set limits,
    To expect and demand respect,
    To not accept abuse in any form for myself or my children,
    How not to enable,
    And to celebrate myself.

    Because of this community,
    My children are alive, happy, and flourishing,
    My marriage has been resurrected,
    My family is mended,
    And I am at a place I never expected to find…
    I am at the beginning of a wonderful future.

    I would not be here celebrating with all of you today
    If not for all of your help, encouragement, love, and support.
    If it “takes a village to raise a child”,
    Then it takes a community like this one
    To take all the broken pieces and put them together again
    To create a new whole, one that is better than the original.

    Thank you all, as a group and individually,
    For sharing your vulnerability and short-comings so I could share mine,
    For being at the other end of the phone when I needed you most,
    For putting up with my struggles and failures,
    For not accepting my successes but demanding more intstead,
    For seeing through me when I was not being transparent,
    For helping me learn to celebrate myself even when I saw nothing worthy of celebration,
    And, most of all, for giving me back my children, my family, my marriage,
    My self-worth, and my future.
    You will always have a special place in my memory and in my heart.”

  • Finding community

    “Your vision and your ability to help us recognize our own wisdom has helped us to create our own community where we can be supported, make mistakes, celebrate our successes, and encourage our growth. Thank you for being an incredible power in my life.”

    Finding Community
    Racial and gender diversity
  • Finding community

    “I can only begin to share how incredibly supportive and beautiful and loving it was to be connected to everyone.

    I joined the IFS community about 25 years ago when I started therapy with Rhea Almeida. I developed deep connections with the men and women, some of which will last a lifetime. I moved to CA 20 years ago and remain in contact with quite a few folks. They have seen me through a lot of growth and change and continue to do so.

    Recently, while my parents attended a family destination wedding in PA, my father fell very ill with sepsis and was rushed to the emergency room. I was still in CA and felt like my parents were stranded alone with no support. Family and friends were over an hour away from them, but not near enough to be there constantly or easily. I reached out for emotional support to a couple of dear friends who I met through IFS. They all rallied and quickly communicated to more people near and dear to my parents. Another friend shared that another former IFS member actually worked at the hospital where my dad was! My mom got clothes from her and she went shopping for her for some more. They visited with my parents and celebrated her birthday with her, while she was away and sitting in a hospital room with my father.

    All of this happened while I was making plans to come to PA to help my parents get back home. He was in the hospital for 2 weeks. I absolutely know that he would have recovered, but he and my mom felt emotionally safe and cared for because of the beautiful and caring IFS community.”

    Mia Jones
    Racial and gender diversity
  • Marriage as a partnership

    “We are so great Rich and I and enjoying our new baby Nellie is just about six months old and we are enjoying her massively. We are very much a partnership around everything related to her and the other children and in a very good place in our marriage. There is not a week that goes by that I don’t offer a prayer of gratitude…”

    Marriage as a Partnership
    Racial and gender diversity