Derek Scott, RSW, Cert IFS Therapist

Event Speaker

Derek Scott, RSW, Cert. IFS Therapist


Derek Scott is the founder of IFSCA, an organization dedicated to teaching the Internal Family Systems (IFS) model to mental health professionals in Canada and beyond. He has worked in the field of counselling/therapy for over 35 years, including 17 working exclusively as an IFS therapist. He is a popular guest lecturer in the department of Thanatology at the University of Western Ontario and has presented at numerous national and international conferences. As a young counsellor his work of 18 years in the AIDS field afforded him much understanding of the community impact of an epidemic and necessitated developing a personal, and then professional framework to be able to continue to thrive.

Incorporating methodologies from his background and training in gestalt therapy, psychodrama and sociometry, and IFS Derek brings a wealth of expertise in working with groups. He is known for his combination of compassion, insight and humour as well as his ability to facilitate engagement with the group process. 

Derek is also a published author, writing on the IFS model as it applies to loss.


COVID through an IFS and Grief Lens: What’s Lost? What’s Left? What’s Possible?

Speaker: Derek Scott, RSW, Certified IFS Therapist

Janov Bullman uses the term “Shattered Assumptions” when describing traumatic loss. We can see in our individual and community responses to the pandemic the aspects of our protective systems that have helped us to cope: “We’ll get back to normal soon”, “The vaccines will save us”, “There is no pandemic – it’s a lie”. These parts of us help to buffer the impact on our lives so that we can gradually absorb the meaning of the impact of the pandemic.

What is that meaning? it will differ for individuals. How can we begin to process and integrate the “New Normal”?

In this session participants will be introduced to the Internal Family systems (IFS) model and the understanding of how our inherent multiplicity informs our responses to the inevitability of attachment and loss. We will explore how early losses and our caregivers’ responses shape our internal capacity to journey through the oscillations of loss and restoration. Participants will be invited to explore how grief may be held in the body (somaticized) and how it may be witnessed and released.

Once freed up to have the conversation about what we have lost we can find our appreciation for what’s left and vision, individually and collectively, what’s possible.

Key Take-aways

  1. Name the three major aspects of the Personality System
  2. Identify the components of the “Grief Cluster”
  3. Apply their learning to themselves, their families, their clients and communities