The latest news from the Pre-Therapy International Network

Ton Coffeng Library

Post date: 17-Jun-2024

The Pre-Therapy International Network is proud to present the complete body of work by Ton Coffeng, both published and unpublished. Ton Coffeng, a psychiatrist-in-rest, is renown as a Pre-Therapy trainer and Person-Centered psychotherapist with a private practice. He is a trainer and supervisor for the Dutch association for Person-Centered and Experiential Psychotherapy (VPeP) and the Dutch national association for psychotherapy (NVP). He was an academic lecturer at Rijksuniversiteit Groningen.

His expertise includes Pre-Therapy, Focusing and Experiential Psychotherapy, particularly in the field of trauma and dissociation. He attended the annual International Pre-Therapy Network meetings in Ghent, Belgium,  for many years, as well as Focusing workshops with Gendlin, Olsen, Iberg, and others since 1979, and Gendlin's special workshops for psychotherapists.  Ton has contributed to the development of Pre-Therapy, particularly in the field of trauma and dissociation.

At the start of this year, we learned about Ton's valuable collection of texts in five languages (Dutch, English, German, Russian, Japanese). As some of these texts are hard to find, and some have never been published, we decided to make them available through the Pre-Therapy website.  Besides providing a link for each of his references in our Reference List, we will make a link available to his complete body of work on top of that list. 

The Ton Coffeng Library includes 76 full texts and five lists of publications, written or published between 1984-2018, thus spanning a period of 34 years. Thank you Ton for your hard work and treasured contribution!

Here we present a list of references, one for each language: English - Nederlands - Deutsch - 日本語 - Русский. These lists are included in the full library.

PCE Europe - Christmas Newsletter 2023 

Post date: 30-Dec-2023

Please find below the 2023 Christmas Newsletter from the European Network for Person-Centred and Experiential Psychotherapy and Counselling:

Dear Members, 

An eventful and busy 2023 is coming to an end.   

Among other topics the PCE Europe board worked on necessary amendments to our statutes and bylaws, which were accepted during the General Assembly in June.  

The GA also saw a “changing of the guards”, as Allan Turner and Dimitris Portokalis decided to leave the board. Our new colleagues Willow Langdale-Smith, Alex Vallidis and Jonno Ward have started working on their respective roles and already support the board in pushing forward several of our projects. 

Our first onsite European symposium since COVID in Athens, Greece, was a unique opportunity for many of our members to meet their colleagues face to face again. Fully booked, the topic of “Polyphony in a Changing World” was a great success and the extracurricular events such as a visit to the Acropolis Museum or a concert of polyphonic singing were a wonderful opportunity to connect in an informal manner.  

The 2025 symposium will take place in Spain, further information to follow soon!  

In the meantime, the boards of PCE Europe and WAPCEPC are successfully working together to ensure better teamwork on several items, such as collaboration on future events or the possibility for PCE Europe individual members to subscribe to the PCEP Journal.  

Our working groups and committees continue to focus on important topics such as Ethics, Science & Research and Certification. We are also part of several EAP working groups, such as the ETSC, which coordinates pan-European organisations in specialising their core competencies including the Person-Centered Approach.  

In addition, the board is looking for new members to join several of our committees. For further information, please see Committees | PCE Europe ( 

Finally, you are cordially invited to take part in our monthly online PCE Europe Encounter Group!  

We wish you all a restful holiday season and all the very best indeed for 2024! 

On behalf of the Board of PCE Europe

Leonore Langner
Chair PCE Europe


New Person-Centred, Contact-Orientated training available in the UK

Post date: 19-Nov-2023

A brand new CPD course on Person-centred, contact-orientated counselling/psychotherapy in a nature setting is now available to book for 2024 in the UK, including the opportunity for an additional Pre-Therapy Certificate.


This training, called the Heart Wood Training Certificate, is run by the mental health charity, Heart Wood, and led by Heart Wood Mentor and Pre-Therapy International Network Certified Trainer, Rab Erskine, and Heart Wood founder, Chip Ponsford.


The Heart Wood Training Certificate is an in-person residential course over six weekends, being offered as an eight-month long training experience. The focus will be on the philosophy, attitudes, ethics and structures necessary for practitioners wanting to work outside the counselling room. The course offers 100 hours of CPD training and includes a minimum of five days of input in Contact Work by including the “Extended Certificate in Pre-Therapy (contact reflections)” certified by the Pre-Therapy International Network.

The training will take place at the Minsteracres Retreat Centre, Consett, England, DH8 9RT and the course dates are:

The cost for this CPD is £2,400 which includes food and camping accommodation.


Places are limited so if you would like to find out more or to apply, please visit:

For any questions, please contact Emma Ponsford, Heart Wood Manager, on

Journeys of Hope at the Difficult Edge

Post date: 2-June-2023

On 11 May 2023, Dr Wendy Traynor, a member of the Pre-Therapy International Network, presented the 2023 Mary Kilborn Lecture at Strathclyde University, titled 'Journeys of Hope at the Difficult Edge: Person-Centred-Experiential Approaches to Working with People with Unusual Experiences or Psychotic Processes'. 

Wendy discussed her path into practice and research with this client population as well as both therapist and client perceptions of helpful and unhelpful aspects of practice and possible impact. Congratulations to Wendy for delivering this inspiring lecture!

For more information, please visit: 

Nature Based, “Contact" Orientated, Therapeutic Experiences

Post date: 20-February-2023

Pre-Therapy International Network member Rab Erskine has written a piece in the latest COSCA (Counselling & Psychotherapy in Scotland) magazine about his 35+ years of experience working in a nature based, contact orientated way. This article includes a description of his therapeutic approach, exploration of themes including working in nature and Pre-Therapy, and examples of his work. 

"I describe my way of working as being nature-based as I try to base all my client work in natural woodland settings but also because I try to remain as close as possible to my clients moment to moment “here and now” experiencing of the situation, putting all my trust into the forward directional tendency of the human organism (the actualising tendency).

I also describe this way of working as being Pre-Therapy or Contact orientated as more and more I have come to realise the enormous benefits of working with the structure of a “Contact” orientated focus, attempting to stay very closely connected to my clients experiencing as we journey/ take part in activities in the natural environment."

To read the full article, please visit:

Reference: Erskine, R. (2022, Winter/Spring). Nature based, "contact" oriented, therapeutic experiences. Counselling & Psychotherapy in Scotland, 19-51.

Pre-Therapy International Network Meeting

Post date: 19-February-2023

Thank you to everyone who joined us last Saturday (11 February 2023) for the online Pre-Therapy International Network Meeting, looking back at 2022 and into 2023. Please find below the presentation from the meeting which includes the latest publications, research, and areas of activity in Pre-Therapy around the world. 

If you would like to join us or contribute at future International Network meetings please do get in touch or join our discussion list, we look forward to seeing you there.

Pete Sanders: a life to be sadly mourned and honoured

Post date: 08-February-2022

Wendy Traynor, Mathias Dekeyser, Rab Erskine and Dion Van Werde

It is with great sadness that we have to announce you the death of Pete Sanders, our beloved friend, colleague and member of the Pre-Therapy International Network. He died on Saturday the 5 th of February.

We will forever remember him as the good man he was, each of us having our own memories of him and stories to tell. In case you have met him personally, we are sure you remember him well, as he had this genuine way of connecting and being there.

To many of us, he was a warm and generous, much-loved friend. He attended many Pre-Therapy International Network meetings in Gent, Belgium, and was there one of the driving forces. Always modest and open for other opinions, he nevertheless had a clear view on what was important to him and for what cause he was ready to give his best.

He could be very radical in his fundamental choice for the individual that was in need. He fought for people to be recognized in their individual strength, potential and humanity. He was critical of societal structures that kept injustice and imbalances going, depriving people of their fundamental rights and self-respect, and was in doing so, clearly and fundamentally person-centered.

He actively helped to increase the presence of Pre-Therapy on the world map and encouraged new members to become involved and engage in this effective and innovative approach. He supported and encouraged key pieces of research and academic writing in this area. He offered training in Pre-Therapy to organisations and in universities and other forums, and was an active and developmental part of the network for many years.

PCCS books, where he was based, changed the face of the writing of person-centred experiential therapies and published many works featuring PCT and Pre-Therapy. He published the book “Pre-Therapy” of Prouty, Van Werde and Pörtner (2002), followed by the Pre-Therapy reader “Emerging Developments in Pre-Therapy” (2008). He himself edited “The Contact-Work Primer” (2007), often used in teaching and writing, and was guest editor (with Sommerbeck and Van Werde) of the special issue on Pre-Therapy for the World Journal’s “Person-Centered and Experiential Psychotherapies” (2015). See for references at the site of the network The list of other influential PC-books he supported and published is long. 

He was a community member and can be seen as hugely influential in the person-centred therapy movement and specifically in the Pre-Therapy network. He was present in his writing and in his lively and insightful contributions at meetings and international conferences and events.

He is a life to be both sadly mourned and honoured in appreciation for what he has given to us.

New Publication by Dion Van Werde

Post date: 18-October-2021

We are pleased to announce that a new publication written by Dion Van Werde is now available. The article presents Pre-Therapy and grey-zone work alongside a clinical example of someone who shifted into a catatonic state during a session in an occupational rehabilitation programme. 

Dion presented this case at this year's annual conference of the GWG, the national German association for Person-Centered Psychotherapy and Counselling.

The details of this publication are below and are also included in the references section of our website.

Van Werde, D. (2021). Prä-Therapie: Halt anbieten bei Kontaktverlust. GWG-Zeitschrift, 3, 11-17.

New website!

Post date: 19-August-2021

Welcome to our brand new Pre-Therapy International Network website. We hope you enjoy the new layout and it is easy to find what you are looking for in relation to Pre-Therapy. Here you can read the latest news stories, explore Pre-Therapy and Contact Work, find out how to get involved with the Network or Discussion List, read about Garry Prouty, discover more about training and workshops, and explore our varied references. 

If you have any questions or are struggling to find the information you need, please do not hesitate to get in contact with us by emailing: 

Previous news items

Two publications by Garry Prouty available online — 02-Mar-2021 10:12:42

Pre-Therapy Article and Call for Contributions — 01-Feb-2021 12:29:03

Our First Online Network Meeting — 30-Nov-2020 18:21:19

New PhD research on Pre-Therapy and Person-Centred Therapy — 09-Nov-2020 15:45:01

Pre-Therapy International Network Meeting 2020 — 03-Oct-2020 15:06:22

Person-Centred Therapeutic Practitioner Perspectives on Using Pre-Therapy — 28-Sep-2020 12:43:41

New article on Pre-Therapy — 07-Sep-2020 14:25:14

Pre-Therapy International Network Meeting 2019 Report — 02-Mar-2020 16:16:33

How do Person-Centred and Experiential Pre-Therapy practitioners experience offering unconditional positive regard to clients experiencing psychotic processes? — 04-Nov-2019 07:48:09

Concreet spiegelen en contactwerk — 29-Oct-2019 13:58:24

2019 Pre-Therapy International Network Meeting — 09-Jul-2019 19:19:57

Marlis Pörtner's handbooks translated into French — 23-Oct-2018 09:27:28

Personzentrierte Psychotherapie bei eingeschränkten Kontaktfunktionen — 05-Sep-2018 14:27:50

Cliëntgerichte zorg voor psychosegevoelige mensen: Herstel en versterken van contact — 19-Oct-2017 11:33:30

Pour ceux qui ne sont pas prêts pour une thérapie — 19-Oct-2017 10:13:37

A busca de contato psicológico com autista através da Pré-Terapia — 19-Oct-2017 09:23:44

Snoezelen — 27-Feb-2017 10:45:57

PCEP Special Issue on Pre-Therapy — 03-May-2016 15:23:10

Garry's 1986 workshop in Breda — 01-Apr-2016 15:04:47

Katherine Fisenko's interview with Dion Van Werde for Moscow's National Research University — 14-Sep-2015 15:08:43

Special issue dedicated to the memory of Garry Prouty — 26-May-2015 10:13:31

Herstel en versterken van contact — 26-May-2015 09:06:53

Person-Centred practice at the difficult edge — 30-Jul-2014 18:08:40

Person-Centered Therapy in wilderness environments — 28-Oct-2013 15:10:59

What’s in a Name? Emerging Perspectives on the Intersection of “Schizophrenia” and “Recovery” — 21-May-2013 11:00:33

Rediscovering humanity in working with persons with learning disabilities — 08-May-2013 20:19:39

Progetto Con-tatto — 08-May-2013 17:56:17

Konferencja o preterapii — 08-May-2013 16:29:26

Prä-Therapie als Hinführung zur Personzentrierten Psychotherapie und als Basis für eine Prozessuale Diagnostik — 04-Nov-2012 17:00:15

Report of the Pre-Therapy International Network for PCE Europe — 02-Jul-2012 21:35:52