ANZAED Workshop: Family Based Therapy for Adolescent Anorexia Nervosa Intensive

Family Based Therapy was developed at the Maudsley hospital in London and popularised by further research work in the USA and publication of a manual in the early 2000’s. The model integrates ideas from a number of family therapy approaches but has the basic premise that families are the best resource to help their child recover from anorexia nervosa in the home setting. The model is an outpatient treatment that supports the family over a 12 month period, and is suitable for adolescents with Anorexia Nervosa with a short course of illness. Family Based Therapy has the strongest evidence base to date for this age group and was first implemented in Australia at The Children’s Hospital at Westmead in 2003.

The aim of this workshop will be to provide intensive practical training in the application of this model including:

  • Theoretical background and framework, including the roles of the multidisciplinary team in the model
  • Detailed descriptions of each phase and the key sessions at the start of treatment
  • A feature of the workshop will be the demonstration of key skills and the first two sessions of treatment
  • Guided role play will be used to aid micro skill development of participants

By the completion of the workshop participants will have a good working knowledge of the model and will be able to begin to use the Family Based Therapy model in their own clinical setting.

Prerequisites for the workshop would include:

  • Experience with eating disorders
  • Some experience in seeing families
  • An opportunity to apply the model in clinical practice​

Friday 14 February & Saturday 15 February 2020
9.00am – 4.30pm (on both days)

Registration Fee – $600 Members; $720 Non-Members
(for 2 days including refreshments and lunch)

Venue: Northside Conference Centre
Oxley St, St Leonards NSW 2065


Speaker: Dr Andrew Wallis is a clinical social worker and family therapist. He has been working with adolescents and their families for more than 20 years. In 2003 with colleagues at The Children’s Hospital, Westmead, he established the first Family-Based Treatment program in Australia, and Multiple Family therapy for Anorexia Nervosa in 2014. He has been providing training, consultation and supervision in Australia and New Zealand for more than 10 years, helping to support public and private services to implement family therapy approaches to adolescent problems. Andrew has also been involved in family therapy research with more than 25 per reviewed papers and book chapters including his PhD research on the impact of Family Based Therapy on family relationships during treatment.

Senior Social Worker Colleen Alford

Speaker: Colleen Alford is a Senior Social Worker and family therapist. Colleen specialises in providing family based treatment for children and adolescents with eating disorders and works at The Children’s Hospital at Westmead Eating Disorders Service. She has more than 12 years experience in providing FBT and 18 years experience in the child and adolescent mental health sector. Colleen provided training and consultation to over 500 clinicians in 2017 and 2018 as part of the NSW State-wide Eating Disorders Plan. Colleen has developed a six week parent group program based on the principles of Family Based Treatment, as well as parent group for parents of adolescents with a dual diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder and Anorexia Nervosa.

Location & Parking

Northside Conference Centre is ideally located in the heart of Crows Nest, Cnr Oxley St & Pole Ln Crows Nest NSW 2065, the café and restaurant centre of the North Shore. We are a convenient 5-minute walk from St Leonards train station and across the street from a multi-storey car park. On the corner of Oxley St and Pole Lane in Crows Nest is where the GPS will take you, then proceed 30m up Pole Lane to our main entry via the sandstone steps.

On-street Parking

On-street parking near the Centre is generally metered parking (2P or less) with strictly enforced regulations. If an area is marked as ‘No Parking’ or ‘Private Parking’ we request that all attending a function here, respect the rights of others and honour the parking restrictions.


The Hume Street Car Park is located directly across from the Northside Conference Centre. There are three additional parking stations run by North Sydney Council, all in close proximity to Northside which are: Holtermann Street, Nicholson Street and Alexander Street. Early bird rates apply at these stations so don’t forget to validate your ticket at the parking station on arrival. See the North Sydney Council website for rates.

Public Transport

There are several bus routes from the city and further North or West that stop in Crows Nest and/or St Leonards.
St Leonards also boasts a well appointed train station on the Northern Line. Northside is then only a 5-minute walk from both centres.