What is the Psychedelic Psychotherapy Forum?
Currently held biennially, the Psychedelic Psychotherapy Forum is Canada’s premiere conference, facilitating dialogue and shared learnings about psychedelic-assisted therapies and research, including the ethical, cultural, indigenous and spiritual use of plant medicines and psychedelic substances for personal and collective healing and transformation. Training and continuing education credits are also offered to health providers, including clinical counsellors and psychotherapists, psychologists, and family doctors, for relevant presentations, panels, and workshops.
We advocate for the therapeutic, spiritual and cultural use of plant medicines and psychedelic substances for personal and collective healing and transformation. We see the potential of such use to envision a new way of life on Earth, in right relations with all her inhabitants. We aspire to help cultivate safer, justice-informed, inclusive communities of practice who are active in reconciliation, eliminating systems of oppression, and environmental stewardship.
Our intention for the 2020 Psychedelic Psychotherapy Forum is to co-create spaces for deep listening, dialogue, learning, relationship building and visioning. We draw on trauma-informed, restorative justice and intersectional practice, and the values of humility, courage, vulnerability, transparency, reciprocity, compassion, and trust.
Why did you change venues?
Vancouver Island Conference Centre has large and small meeting rooms and a bigger space, providing us with the flexibility of holding all our events including workshops under one roof.
Nanaimo is located in central Vancouver Island, and is convenient — approximately 1.5 hours commute — for registrants who are travelling to the forum from Vancouver as well as from Victoria. It is linked to Vancouver via the Horseshoe Bay BC Ferries terminal in West Vancouver and the Duke Point terminal to the Tsawwassen ferry terminal in Tsawwassen. Seaplanes from downtown Vancouver (20 minutes) and Vancouver International Airport (20 minutes) also fly directly to Nanaimo Harbour.]
Who organizes the Forum?
Our steering committee organizes the Forum. Our current PPF committee consists of Pauline Goh, Mercedes Grant, Shannon Dames, and Marnie Roper. To read more about our steering committee members, click HERE.
Are there others who help to support the 2020 Forum?
In addition to our sponsors, we have many volunteers who serve in our committees including Program Planning, Scholarship, and Continuing Education.
How many events have you held?
The 2020 forum is the fifth evolution of the event, with past events held in 2014 2015, 2016 and 2018. During the bridge years, respectively, in 2017, the Forum sponsored a Holotropic Breathwork (TM) Weekend grand event — the largest gathering in Western Canada of Grof Transpersonal Training (GTT) certified facilitators; and in 2019, the Forum hosted a series of small workshops and professional training retreats.
Read more about the history of the forum HERE
Where are you located?
We humbly recognize the sacred, Indigenous lands that we live and work on. Collectively, we are on Turtle Island, aka Canada, with each of us living as guests on the unceded, ancestral lands of the Coast Salish, Snuneymuxw, Klahoose, Sliammon and Homalco; Victoria, Nanaimo and Cortes Island.
In 2020, we changed the forum venue to the Vancouver Island Conference Centre on unceded, ancestral Snuneymuxw territories, in Nanaimo, British Columbia. We also hosted the forum virtually, via livestream.
How do I apply to volunteer for future PPF events?
We put out a call for volunteers about 6 – 9 months prior to our biennial conference.
Are there scholarship opportunities?
Yes! The PPF scholarship committee reviews all applications and makes final decisions.
Can I attain CEs by watching the video recording of the forum?
In-person and virtual registrants are required to attend the full day’s session in its entirety (on actual day(s) of forum and/or workshops) to attain CE credits.
Our CE accrediting organizations of the 2020 Forum — Canadian Psychological Association; Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association; College of Family Physicians Canada; and Spiritual Competency Resource Centre (APA CE hours) — have approved CEs based on the live events (in-person and virtual) where PPF is able to monitor attendance.
In future, with a Learning Management System platform, supported by volunteers, there may be opportunities in future to enable registrants to attain CEs by watching video recordings and completing quiz questions to verify attendance.
Will there be dedicated safe spaces during the event?
Yes. We recognize the need to create the safest container possible for everyone who attends, and in particular, we are committed to providing expert facilitation and support for folks who are under-represented in the space. In 2020, we offered a dedicated space for BIPOC to gather, share, heal and rest, whether in-person or virtually with an online break-out room, in addition to a psychological first aid space for those who may need support during the event.
How many people attend the forum?
In 2020, we had 50 in-person attendees (per COVID restricted numbers for a gathering), as well as 400+ virtual attendees. In 2016 and 2018, about 200 – 300 people attended in-person at each respective forum. This is smaller than most conference events, allowing us to maintain an intimate atmosphere and cultivate relationships and learning for folks in attendance.
Who is encouraged to attend the forum?
Anyone! In particular, there are folks in certain professions and life paths that may find special interest in what we have to offer >>>
- Counsellors, therapists
- Social workers
- Body workers
- Holistic/integrated practitioners
- Traditional healers
- Policy analysts
- Community leaders
- Change agents
- Anyone interested in psychedelic psychotherapy for personal and collective healing, and transformation.
Why should I consider attending this forum?
- Be in the forefront of rapid developments in the field of psychedelic psychotherapy and transpersonal psychology
- Find out about the latest research, opportunities, and challenges in psychedelic medicines and psychedelic-assisted therapies
- Build bridges and different ways of knowing, i.e. indigenous and western approaches, clinical and ceremonial, science and spirituality
- Develop community and connect with peers, advocates, community leaders, and change agents
- Discuss legal and ethical concerns/challenges as well as cultural and spiritual aspects of this field
- Attain continuing education credits
Where should I stay during the forum?
Adjacent to our 2020 forum venue, the Vancouver Island Conference Centre in downtown Nanaimo, is the Coast Bastion Hotel and Best Western Dorchester Hotel.
I have dietary restrictions; can you accommodate me?
Yes! Meals offered include vegan, vegetarian and gluten free options. If you have a particular allergy and/or restriction that requires unique attention, please inform our registrar.
I have restricted abilities; what is the accessibility of the venue?
The Vancouver Island Conference Centre notes on their website: “We want all delegates and visitors, regardless of ability or age, to feel welcome – and we built our convention space with that in mind. We have wheelchair services, as well as accessible doorways, walkways, elevators, washrooms, and parking. Our facility complies with all federal, provincial and local accessibility regulations and laws, and it upholds the rights of people with disabilities.”