Understanding Families and Healing Relationships

This workshop will give you an understanding of families and what leads to conflict. Participants will learn how to help restore broken relationships.


Evonne Lek

Current Status
SGD 580.00
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Course Overview

We all live our lives through our relationships; the most important relationship is with our families. We form a deep and emotional bond with our secure attachment figures. Nothing troubles us more than when there is conflict in our family. Children and adults are no exceptions. For instance, the root cause behind issues a student faces may be family-related. In our work, be it as a educator, social worker or mental health professional, we are very likely to come across incidents of family conflict and desire to help the affected persons more effectively.

This workshop will give you an understanding of families and what leads to conflict.  Participants will learn how to help restore broken relationships. We will apply knowledge from attachment theory and family system theory to reframe the way we think about family conflict. (PS: Family Systems Theory has been influential in its application to all other therapeutic approaches.) Participants will have the opportunity to share their experiences with their past or present cases; and we will learn how to apply family systems concepts to them in order to draw out important skills.

​This workshop comprises of 2 parts:

Part 1 helps participants understand families and the potential causes of family conflicts. We will also introduce family systems theory and the importance to perceive systemically. Key principles guiding the approach and intervention process and a model of therapeutic change is also covered.

In Part 2, participants will learn how to apply family system theory to conceptualise their client’s issues.  We will also focus on interventions skills to heal relationships.

Target Audience

  • Educators
  • Social Workers, Counsellors and Psychologists working in VWOs
  • Medical Social Workers working in hospitals and medical institutions
  • Psychologists and Counsellors in private practice 


7 hours

Workshop Topics:

Part 1a: Understanding Families

  • What is a family?
    • Families as secure base and safe haven
  • Conflict in families
    • ​What normally happens in a family conflict
    • How professionals get drawn in; “Its all his/her fault”
  • WHY? Some theories
    • Different needs and feelings
    • Differentiating judgment and criticism from observations
    • Mental Health: connection to depression, ADHD, self-harm
    • Individual focus versa Systemic focus
  • Our perceptions
    • Concept of a single reality
    • Limitations where there is one ‘right’ view
    • Stuck when its about who’s right/wrong
    • We may view that we are right and client is wrong
  • Situational barriers / Context
    • Different cultural meanings and narratives
    • Issues about Culture, Race, Gender, Disability, Class, Religion, Age, Sexual Orientation

Part 1b: The Systemic Family Therapy

  • What is Systemic Family Therapy?
  • Stance of a systemic therapist
    • ​How to remain neutral
      • Understanding yourself and your position
      • How to share your views in a different way
    • ​​How to remain Curious
      • ​Curious stance
    • ​Practice (Case Studies, Role-Play and scenario)
  • Key principles guiding the intervention process
    • Attachment Theory
    • Systems Focus
    • Circularity
    • Connections and Patterns
    • Narratives and Language
    • Social Constructionism, etc.
  • A model of therapeutic change

Part 2a: Case Conceptualisation

  • Hypothesising and Formulation: Practical Application
    • Examples of systemic formulation
  • Genogram: Practical Application
    • What questions to ask to facilitate more understanding
    • Case example
  • Your beliefs about emotions: Practical Application
    • Meta-emotions questionnaire
    • Understanding your own beliefs about whether emotions should be expressed
    • Why is talking about emotions important?

Part 2b: Intervention Skills

  • Conflict de-escalation
  • Using questions
    • Linear questioning and circular questioning  
  • Solution-focused or strength-based questions
    • Focus on solutions, not problems
    • Use of miracle question to set goals
    • Look for exceptions
  • Healing relationships
    • ​Validation
    • Emotions
    • Attachment 
  • Practice Time
    • Real Case Studies
    • Role-play and scenario
    • Skill practice

About the Trainer

Evonne Lek
The workshop facilitator is Ms Evonne Lek. Evonne holds a Master degree and is a qualified Systemic Psychotherapist and a member of AFT, The Association of Family Therapy and Systemic Practice. She has worked as a family clinician in London, and a family therapist and Senior Medical Social Worker in IMH. Evonne currently runs her own successful practice. Evonne is passionate about the issues of mental health and has a combined 18 years of experience working with children, couples and families with a range of disabilities and mental illnesses. Her training on systemic therapy to parents, teachers, school counsellors, doctors, nurses and social workers has always been extremely well received. She has been quoted in news and interviewed for television.

Available Funding

Normal Fees: S$580
SkillsFuture Credit: Can be used to pay course fee fully or partially
NTUC UTAP: NTUC union members enjoy 50% unfunded course fee support, capped at $250 or $500 (aged 40 years old and above)
NCSS VCF Pre- Approval Funding: $240
​​Schools & Ministries: e-invoicing via vendor.gov