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History of the WAPCEPC

HISTORICAL DEVELOPMENT*

(by Peter Schmid)

On the First World Conference on Psychotherapy (WCP) in July 1996 the PCA was not as well represented as it could have been. This lead to discussions on an informal meeting of 30 person–centered theoreticians and practioners at the meeting in Bad Hall** in Austria, organized by the Austrian PCA, about the lack of international communication, connection and representation.

During this meeting a letter was drawn up, signed and afterwards sent to several client-/person-centered and experiential associations and persons all over the world and to internet networks. People were asked to spread the information and to send reactions before April 1997. The letter was published in many national journals and different languages. It stated the intention to found an international organization on the occasion of the International Conference in Lisbon in July 1997. The topic was announced again as part of the program of the conference to all people who had registered for the IVth ICCCEP in Lisbon. A modified version of the letter was presented as provisional statutes to the participants of the Lisbon Conference. In Lisbon there were three plenary sessions where the topic was discussed intensely and a decision was made to form a core group (Provisional Executive Board) of a few people who would work out a proposal of detailed constitutions and regulations which could then be presented at the Vth Conference in Chicago in the year 2000. There was a Working Group of 17 members who would look at possibilities for a journal and other things that would come up. (Representatives of as many continents as possible would be more than welcome. People were also asked to propose persons who were not present.) As nobody has the money to go traveling around the world it was decided to work through e-mail, faxes and telephone. Finally there was a voting on the foundation, the Statutes, the financial contributions and the Working Group. Among the approximately one hundred people there were only two votes against the foundation and no votes against in the other decisions. So the World Association was officially founded on July 8th, 1997.

During its working period the Provisional Executive Board was working on a newsletter for the members, the preparations for the ICCCEP Chicago 2000, a proposal for an international journal and the application for membership in the World Council for Psychotherapy (WCP).

* The first version of these lines was originally written by Elisabeth Zinschitz in an e-mail sent to the CCT/PCA list server.
** Has nothing to do with "bad" and "hall", but is the name of a small town and health resort in Upper Austria, close to Gmunden, whose name means "Salty Baths".

THE BAD HALL LETTER

From: Participants at a Person-Centered Meeting at Bad Hall, Austria, July 1996

Dear colleagues,

We are writing to you following discussions held at a meeting of person-centered therapists which took place in Bad Hall, Austria, immediately after the First Congress of the World Council of Psychotherapy in Vienna.

The meeting in Bad Hall took the form of intensive exploration over a three day period of those issues facing the client-centered and experiential traditions in the immediate years ahead. Participants were drawn from many countries and three continents. There was some disappointment at the lack of significant key-note contributions from the person-centered perspective at the World Congress and a recognition that much needs to be done if we are not only to take our rightful position on the international stage but also to make readily accessible to our colleagues from other orientations those aspects of our theory and practice which are only now beginning to be recognized and valued, without acknowledgement of their origin, as a result of developments and advances in other approaches to psychotherapy.

It is clear to us that the time is now ripe for the creation of an identifiable, international organization which can serve as a world-wide forum for those professionals who have

  • A commitment to the primary importance of the relationship between the therapist and the client,
  • an essential trust in the experiential world of the client and its centrality for the therapeutic endeavour,
  • a belief in the efficacy of the conditions and attitude conducive to therapeutic movement first postulated by Carl Rogers and a commitment to their active implementation within the therapeutic relationship,
  • a commitment to the understanding of both clients and therapists as persons who are at one and the same time individuals and in relationship with others and with their environment,
  • an openness to the elaboration and development of person-centered and experiential theory in the light of current and future practice and research.

We believe that the creation of an international organisation is vital for the future survival and enhancement of our approach and we therefore strongly propose the establishing of the

INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR PERSON-CENTERED THERAPY (IAPCT) 
An Association for the Science and Practice of Client-Centered and Experiential Psychotherapies and Counselling

The Association, as we envisage it, would be open to both organisational and individual members and would invite to its membership existing national organisations, major agencies, and training institutes within the university system and outside of it. Among its functions would be the general oversight of future international conferences and the production of a high-quality journal which would be fully cognisant of the major contributions currently made by those from non-English speaking countries.

We encourage all recipients of this letter to disseminate information about the proposed International Association to those within their own sphere. We would also ask that reactions to the proposal and further suggestions about the formation and functioning of an international association be submitted to one of the six persons whose addresses appear below by April 1, 1997 at the latest.

It is our hope that final decision could be taken and concrete plans for the foundations of the Association made during the Fourth International Conference on Client-Centered and Experiential Psychotherapy to be held in Portugal in 1997. This will be the tenth year since Carl Rogers' death and an appropriate time to take a major step to ensure the continuing vitality and influence of the distinctive approach to psychotherapy to which we are committed in our various ways.

Germain Lietaer, Belgium, 
Maureen O'Hara, USA, 
Bernie Neville, Australia, 
Peter F. Schmid, Austria, 
Brian Thorne, United Kingdom

Signed by: 
Anna Auckenthaler, D • Eva-Maria Biermann-Ratjen, D • Ute Binder, D • Rainer Bürki, CH • Christian Fehringer, A • Peter Frenzel, A • Ned Gaylin, USA • Christiane Geiser, CH • Martin van Kalmthout, NL • Sylvia & Wolfgang Keil, A • Lore Korbei, A • Colin Lago, GB • Mia Leijssen, B • Germain Lietaer, B • Robert Lucas, USA • Mhairi MacMillan, GB • Wolfgang Neumann, D • Bernie Neville, AUS • Maureen O'Hara, USA • Wolfgang Pfeiffer, D • Marlis Pörtner, CH • Uli Schlunder, D • Peter F. Schmid, A • Hermann Spielhofer, A • Brian Thorne, GB • Margaret Warner, USA • Marietta Winkler, A • Andreas Wittrahm, D • Elisabeth Zinschitz, A

 PROVISIONAL STATUTES

World Association for Person-Centered Counseling and Psychotherapy
An Association for the Science and Practice of Client-Centered and Experiential Psychotherapies and Counseling

  1. Principles

The aim of this Association is to provide a world-wide forum for those professionals who have

  • a commitment to the primary importance in therapy of the relationship between therapist and client,
  • an essential trust in the experiential world of the client and its centrality for the therapeutic endeavor,
  • a belief in the efficacy of the conditions and attitudes conducive to therapeutic movement first postulated by Carl Rogers and a commitment to their active implementation within the therapeutic relationship,
  • a commitment to an understanding of both clients and therapists as persons who are at one and the same time individuals and in relationship with others and with their environment,
  • an openness to the elaboration and development of person-centered and experiential theory in the light of current and future practice and research.
  1. Goals

The association has the following goals:

  • to further cooperation between person-centered associations, institutes and individuals on an international level, especially in the field of psychotherapy and counseling,
  • to support/facilitate person-centered associations, institutes and individuals in their work,
  • to promote the person-centered paradigm and to support and encourage the scientific study as well as the improvement of practice in this paradigm, specifically in the field of psychotherapy and counseling,
  • to engage in socio-political processes to ensure the continued contribution of the paradigm in health, education, academic contexts etc.,
  • to exchange ideas with other psychotherapeutic orientations and to stimulate cooperation in the field of psychotherapy and counseling,
  • to have a commitment to the organization and support of international conferences, in particular the International Conference on Client-Centered and Experiential Psychotherapy (ICCCEP),
  • to produce a high-quality journal in the English language and to foster the exchange of research, theory and practice among language groups through existing journals and other means.


III. Structure

The structure of the organization corresponds to person-centered principles.

The Association is open to both organizational and individual members. It invites into its membership existing national organizations, major agencies, and training institutes within the university system and outside of it which adhere to its principles and its goals (see I. and II.).

At all levels of membership the principle of local autonomy is maintained. The authority of the Association can only be applied to its composition, to cooperation in the Association and to its external relationships. The Association must not interfere with the rights of national and international organizations. The General Assembly takes all important decisions with regard to the nature of its work.

For the first period till the next General Assembly on the occasion of the Vth ICCCEP a Working Group is elected. Its tasks are to (a) develop a detailed constitution and regulations which on the occasion of the Vth Conference in the year 2000 will be submitted for resolution to the General Assembly, (b) invite members, (c) manage the organizational necessities and budgets for the initial provisional period, (d) elect an Executive Board to represent the Association and further its communication with the external world on ongoing matters which must be resolved rapidly.

The members pay a membership fee to meet the expenses. A fee for the first year is to be decided at the time of foundation by those founding the Association. [organizations: up to 50 members: 100 US$, 51 to 100 members: 200 US$, more than 100 members: 300 US$; individuals: 20 US$]

 The Founding Members of the WAPCCP

The following list includes all people who have signed the list "Founding members" in Portugal at the IVth ICCCEP and the members of the Working Group 1997-2000 (including the Provisional Executive Board).

ALMEIDA Isabel Resina, 
ANDJELKOVIC Jasna, 
ANDRADE Nuno, 
ANDRADE RIBEIRO Joao, 
ANTUNES Samuel, 
BINDER Ute, 
BOHTZ Vera, 
BRAATEN Leif,
COFFENG Ton, 
DA COSTA Michael, 
DALE DE ANDRADE Paula, 
DE CASTELBAJAC Hubert, 
DE FADIMA ANDENES Maria, 
DÖRR Raimund, 
DOUKIDES Lena, 
ELLIOTT Robert, 
FAIRHURST Irene, 
FERNANDES Ana Elisa G., 
FONSELCA Ilda, 
FRENZEL Peter, 
GAYLIN Ned, 
GEISER Christiane, 
GORDON Kunu, 
GREENBERG Leslie, 
GREENWOOD Hannah, 
GUNDRUM Monica, 
HATASE Minoru, 
HATASE Naoko, 
HAUGH Sheila, 
HIPÓLITO Joao, 
HLAVENKA Vladimir, 
HO Shang, 
HUMMEL Hanne, 
IOSSIFIDES Ioulios, 
IOSSIFIDES Polly, 
JOSUE Ana Sofia, 
KAHN Edwin, 
KLEIN Monika-Elisabeth, 
KORBEI Lore, 
LAMBERS Elke, 
LEONARD Martine, 
LIETAER Germain, 
MARQUES TEIXEIRA Joao, 
MATIAS Celeste Maria, 
MENDES COELHO Fernando, 
MENDES Luisa,
NAGELS Auke, 
NEVES Maria Emília, 
NEVILLE Bernie, 
NUNES Odete, 
O'HARA Maureen, 
PEREIRA Francisco, 
PETCH Tom, 
PINTO Christina, 
PÖRTNER Marlis, 
PRIELS Jean-Marc,
RODRIGUES Arlete, 
ROELENS Luc, 
SANTOS-DODT Mareike, 
SCHMID Peter F., 
SEGRERA Alberto S.,
SHIMIZU Mikio, 
SPECTOR Suzanne, 
STINKENS Nele,
TASSINARI Marcia, 
THORNE Brian, 
VAN ASBROEK Stan, 
VAN DER MOOLEY Caila, 
VAN KALMTHOUT Martin, 
VERHULSDONK Michael, 
VICENTE Elisa, 
WARNER Margaret, 
WILKINS Paul, 
WINKLER Marietta, 
WYATT Gill, 100 
ZIMRING Fred, 
ZINSCHITZ Elisabeth M.
The data were taken from the Lisbon participant's lists. Most likely the list contains mistakes and the data ought to be checked by the members.

 The Working Group of the WAPCCP 1997-2000

Groupe de Travail | Arbeitsgruppe 1997-2000

HATASE Minoru, 
HIPÓLITO Joao, 
HLAVENKA, Vladimir, 
LAMBERS Elke, 
LIETAER Germain, 
MARQUES TEIXEIRA Joao, 
NEVILLE Bernie, 
O'HARA Maureen, 
SCHMID Peter F., 
SEGRERA Alberto S., 
HO Shang,
SPECTOR Suzanne, 
TASSINARI Marcia, 
THORNE Brian, 
WACKER Paulus G.,
WARNER Margaret,
WILKINS Paul, 
ZINSCHITZ Elisabeth M., 
Consultant: DE HAAS, Olaf Peter

 The First (Provisional) Board of the WAPCCP 1997-2000

Joao HIPÓLITO (P), Elke LAMBERS (UK), Germain LIETAER (B), Peter F. SCHMID (A), Alberto S. SEGRERA (MX), Suzanne SPECTOR (US), Margaret WARNER (US), Paul WILKINS (UK)

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