IICP aims to provide training and education to the wider community of professionals and volunteers working in the caring professions. This is achieved through offering opportunities, both formally and informally to learners, which enhance personal and professional development through training and education within the context of mental health. IICP provides a comprehensive programme for those who wish to pursue professional accreditation and academic validation in the mental health services; it encompasses a multicultural and pluralistic approach with a core philosophical framework reflecting the principles and practices of Choice Theory, Person-centred Counselling and Multicultural Counselling and Therapy. The ethos of IICP reflects the Quality School Model of CT/RT/LM, which promotes the following goals:
- A warm, safe environment that is free from fear, criticism and coercion.
- Clear and direct communication that enhances relationships and fosters an environment conducive to learning.
- Clear goals and plans to maximise the training experience.
- A contract of learning that clarifies roles and responsibilities for learners and lecturers.
- Consistent feedback utilising self-evaluation, concurrent evaluation and co-verification.
- A need-satisfying environment where choice and personal responsibility will enrich creativity, attitudes and the development of competent and confident practitioners.
- A system for monitoring standards of good practice by promoting ethical awareness for both counsellors in training and lecturers.
Programme Philosophy and Rationale
At IICP, we desire to contribute a community dimension to the development of mental health care and counselling through the use of a practical, cutting-edge and integrative model, which formed the basis for this pioneering and innovative programme. We consider that training in counselling and psychotherapy is an inter-disciplinary endeavour, a combination of art and science to include, amongst others, the disciplines of philosophy, psychology, sociology and anthropology. IICP’s core philosophical ethos, which offers a theoretical framework encompassing humanistic-existential, cognitive-behavioural and multicultural psychotherapeutic models, is a contemporary integrative framework. This approach offers a broad structure to professionals who are dealing with a diverse range of clients and presenting problems. IICP offers a unique learner-centred environment. At the heart of the training provided in IICP lies the belief that people are experts in the story of their own lives. The therapeutic process can encourage the client to make effective change in relation to life direction and the ensuing process of decision making. IICP holds that it is not enough simply to teach the skills of counselling and psychotherapy. Learners are given the space to learn, practice and be supported as they develop a style and model of counselling which is both personal and effective.
The history of counselling and psychotherapy has been influenced and is inevitably intertwined with the social, political, economic and cultural climates within which it is formed. It is of particular relevance in times of crises or transition and can also be of help in problem solving. The recent rapid socio-economic and technological changes have resulted in the erosion of traditional social structures such as family, work, and community. As a result, the sense of purpose, belonging, and security associated with these structures has been lost for many. In this context, IICP has established links with The Village Counselling Service, which enables students to complete clinical placement as required by IACP within an appropriate therapeutic setting.