Sat, May 9, 2015
2:00 - 4:00 pm
Participant Limit: 


Early Registration Deadline: 
May 08, 2015



Course Overview: 

Community mental health practitioners are under enormous pressure to deliver more services with fewer resources, while the problems that we are challenged to resolve are increasingly complex. As we strive to provide meaningful interventions that address the social, psychic, and justice demands of those who struggle the most, we have an even greater need to carve out spaces — both within our minds as clinicians and within our places of practice — to reflect on our work and connect with one another. Since our inception in 2012, we discovered that many of us are passionate about encouraging a dialogue between community work and psychoanalytic thinking. We hope to continue to build a community around doing so.

This presentation will be a panel presentation followed by question and answer/discussion on the topic: "Thriving in Community Mental Health".  Three providers will  address thriving in community mental health  settings, each is an amazing model of that rare phenomena.

Amy Peterson, MA, MFT
Acting Director of Primary Care Youth Operations
Community Health Programs for Youth
San Francisco Department of Public Health

Cecile O'Connor, NP
Director, Dore Urgent Care Clinic
52 Dore Street
San Francisco, CA 94103

Daniel Gunther

Course Objectives: 

​Participants will:

  1. Increase their knowledge of how psychoanalytic thinking can inform community mental health work
  2. Increase their knowledge of how community mental health can inform psychoanalytic thinking.
  3. Increase their understanding of how various public and governmental help systems impact clients in the public health system.
  4. Integrate systems thinking and psychoanalytic thinking.
  5. Identify support for early-career community mental health practitioners.
  6. Demonstrate how to increase space for reflective thinking in community mental health clinics
  7. Apply a socio-cultural-political lens to work with clients.
Co-Sponsor Information: 

The Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California (PINC), an International Psychoanalytic Association Society, was established in 1989 as a center for comparative psychoanalytic inquiry, research and training. PINC provides professionals from all mental health disciplines the opportunity to study the full scope of psychoanalytic theory and practice. For information regarding training or referral for analysis, call (415) 288-4050 or visit www.pincsf.org.

Access Institute for Psychological Services has helped thousands of adults, children, couples and families, for the past 10 years. Access provides therapy, medication consultation and psychological testing services at its Hayes Valley clinic, San Francisco public schools and at an adult day health center in Hunters Point. Through its psychoanalytically oriented training program, Access is also building a community of clinicians who are committed to community service.

Target Audience & Level: 

This course is designed for a wide-array of audiences: from early career community mental health clinicians to experienced analysts who have an interest in socio-cultural-political issues.

Contact Information: 

For program related questions contact David Cushman at 415-717-9485 or davidavicushman@gmail.com.

Community Mental Health Committee

This committee is a group of clinicians who are interested in the relationship between Community Mental Health (CMH) and psychoanalysis.  Psychoanalysis is anchored in a quality of close care and attention that is often systematically denied to members of disadvantaged communities and difficult to locate in stressed, under-resourced public mental health clinics.  CMH clinicians hold the tension between a variety of institutional, social, and political pressures and constraints. Meanwhile, psychoanalytic thinking sometimes misses the significance of these systemic influences on individual lives.

There is important work to be done in bridging the theoretical and concrete gaps between community work and psychoanalytic practice. The CMH committee aspires to create a more inclusive home for CMH clinicians within the NCSPP community. In turn, we advocate for greater investment from psychoanalysis in the projects of CMH practitioners- in terms of both theory and practical engagement.

We seek to identify the needs and interests of our various partners both in CMH and NCSPP.  We invite our community members to engage with us by emailing us at cmh@ncspp.org .

David Cushman, Psy.D., Chair
Stefania Pifer, Psy.D., Chair
Suresh Chacko, Psy.D.
Katherine Eng, Ph.D.
Peggy Kim, LMFT