The Challenge of Racism in Therapeutic Practice

Engaging with oppression in practice, supervision and Training


Based on Dr Isha Mckenzie-Mavinga’s books – Black Issues in the Therapeutic Process [2009] and The Challenge of Racism in Therapeutic Practice [2016] Palgrave Macmillan Publishers.

This workshop will be facilitated by Liz Mitchel and Pauline Miller who are BIPOC Masters trained in the black empathic approach to therapy, by Dr Isha Mckenzie-Mavinga


Next Online Workshop:

Saturday 26th & Sunday 27th February 2022


This workshop will be split into four sessions. For consistency and support, participants should attend all four parts.

This workshop will explore themes addressed in Isha’s second book. This two-day training will enhance Therapists’ and professionals’ insight and practice when working with the hidden and voiced impact of black and Asian diversity and the impact of racism in professional support.

This workshop will be facilitated by Liz Mitchell and Pauline Miller


Day 1 – Morning Session: 10:30 to 13:00 | Afternoon Session: 14:00 to 16:00.

Voicing the Unbearable: Denial, Silence, Rage. 

An exploration of the impact of racism on personal development and the psyche: The challenge of addressing the personal and social impact.

Day 2 – Morning Session: 10:30 to 13:00 | Afternoon Session: 14:00 to 16:30.

Identity, Colourism and internalized oppression.

Using concepts such as ‘Recognition Trauma’ and ‘A Black Empathic Approach’ to understand the impact of Intergenerational oppression and racism.

The days will offer participants:
  • Concepts that allow the possibility of making the therapeutic space safe enough for a dialogue about racism.
  • Skills in supporting professionals, trainees and clients in race and power issues associated with oppression and internalised oppression.

Exercises and presentations will be used to encourage shared experiences and dialogue.

We support the specific requirements of the differently-abled.


This has opened up my door of learning wider. Helps me to be with and in my blackness with love and empathy for myself

Delegate feedback

“A powerful, informative and engaging workshop delivered in a contained, safe and respectful environment. I came away with a new found confidence to work with the challenge of racism in therapeutic practice.”  Patricia

“The concept of a Black Empathic approach should be imbedded in all counselling courses.” Collette Xavier. Student.

“The weekend was a mixture of emotions and learning; at times comforting to see and hear my black peers, their struggles and experiences of racism resonate within me and disturbing having to revisit old wounds and stay with them. I am hungry for more spaces in which to explore deeper. thank you Isha for navigating this space with grace and groundedness.”

“This training was an opportunity to think deeply about racism in a space with likeminded people. It gave me great clarity on the sensitivity and congruence needed to navigate conversations involving racism in the therapeutic space.”

“Dr. McKenzie-Mavinga’s training was deeply moving and will impact on my body and mind in an ongoing way. She introduced her concepts of ‘Recognition trauma’ and a Black Empathic Approach in a really clear and practical way.”

“This was a powerful and moving opportunity to begin to develop language to introduce dialogue around racism into the therapy room.”

“The course was a powerful experience and its impact will stay with me. The facilitators worked with the painful and complicated feelings brought up with clarity, grace and compassion.”

“Let us continue on pushing this dialogue towards more equitable therapeutic spaces.”

Who should attend the training?

Psychotherapists, Counsellors, Psychologists, holistic therapists, psychiatrists and individuals involved in the mental health field, caring professions and those concerned about black mental health.

Venue: Online (via Zoom)
Dates: Sat 26th & Sun 12th February 2022 

Day One: Morning Session: 10:30 to 13:00 (Please arrive 15 mins early for registration and preparation). Afternoon Session 14:00 to 16:00

Day Two: Morning Session: 10:30 to 13:00 (Please arrive 5 mins early for registration). Afternoon Session 14:00 to 16:30

Participants are expected to attend all sessions on both days.

Fee: £175 (Members £160), Organisations £225, Students £150, Student members £135
(Includes course material and attendance certificate)

Bookings: Please book by the day before the event, Friday at 5 pm latest. Any registrations after this time will not be accepted.

Sat 26th and Sun 27th February 2022 – Tickets are available below.



Liz Mitchell

Liz Mitchell

Liz Mitchell is a BIPOC Masters graduate trained by Dr Isha Mckenzie-Mavinga with a focus on the black empathic approach to therapy and recognition trauma. She is a final year PGDip student in Counselling and Psychotherapy. Liz began exploring integrative counselling approaches prior to the pandemic, having spent 17 years working primarily with young people in secondary and alternative education settings. Liz expanded on her pastoral work in schools by incorporating the wider community through charitable projects, alongside completing her first MA in Youth and Community Development Studies.

Challenging racism and injustice have always formed an integral part of Liz’s career.

Whilst being a mentor, coach and teacher, Liz was an active union representative and spent a portion of time chairing a regional group for school support staff, facilitating sessions for Black and Asian members.

Liz is a strong advocate of ‘The Challenge of Racism in Therapeutic Practice’ program, having completed the programme herself, and co-facilitated as a Masters graduate.


Pauline Miller















Author of the Challenge of Racism Training - Dr Isha Mckenzie-Mavinga

Author of the Challenge of Racism Training - Dr Isha Mckenzie-Mavinga

Dr Isha Mckenzie-Mavinga is a Published Writer/Poet, Reiki master and Integrative Transcultural Psychotherapist, Lecturer, trainer and supervisor. She has 33 years experience as a therapist, she taught for twenty-six years, worked in mental health, with women impacted by violence in relationships and as a student counsellor. She has published in several anthologies including: The International Handbook of Black Community Mental Health, (2019) (eds) Majors, Carberry & Ransaw, Intercultural Therapy (2019) (eds) Ababio & Littlewood & What is Normal (2020) (eds) Roz Carrol & Jane Ryan.

She has a presentation on the Confer online Module ‘Women on the Counch’ 2020 and has shared her work on various podcasts and conference videos including BME Voices Trauma Conference 2020.

Isha is now semi-retired and is training masters student to facilitate workshops supporting her books Black Issues in the Therapeutic Process (2009) and The Challenge of Racism in Therapeutic Practice (2016) Palgrave Macmillan Publishers.

Dr Isha McKenzie-Mavinga spoke to Helen George in The big interview: Racism and supervision’ Therapy Today, October 2020

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