What is ISST?
The International Society for Sandplay Therapy (ISST) is the international professional association for those trained in the Sandplay Therapy method of Dora Kalff. Please see isst-society.com for Statutes and individual membership requirements.
ISST events are also open to those who seek to learn more about depth psychology with sandplay therapy.
ISST is an umbrella society operating through National Societies around the world. It promotes study, training and research in Sandplay Therapy. It offers its membership a international network, collegiate community and a forum for presentations, research, development and review hosted bi-annually around the world.
America, Brazil, Canada, China, Britain/Ireland, Germany, Hong Kong, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Netherlands, South Korea, Switzerland and Taiwan have national societies affiliated with ISST.
There are also individual ISST Members in the following countries:
Australia, Belgium, Denmark, France, Indonesia, New Zealand, Poland, Romania, Russia, Singapore, South Africa and Uruguay.
In Australia/New Zealand in 2021 there are eight individual members of ISST. Four are Teaching Members.
It is a unique quality of ISST as a professional organisation of Therapists that from the beginning it profited from a shared enthusiasm for a variety of cultural environments. In this way the history of the ISST is a fit testimony for an archetypally grounded common human essence which helps to transcend cultural differences.
The fourteen founding members included members from Switzerland (Dr. med Kaspar Kiepenheuer, Dr. phil. M. Kalff), Italy (Dr. Paola Carducci, Andreina Navone) , England (JoelRyce Menuhin, M. phil.), America (Kay Bradway PhD, Estelle Weinrib MSW, Chonita Larsen PhD, Cecil Burney) and Japan (Prof. Dr. Hayao Kawai PhD, Prof. Dr. Yasuhiro Yamanaka MD, and Prof. Kazumiko Higuchi, D. Min.). In the following year Sigrid Löwen Seifert MD from Germany was included in this founding circle of the ISST. A majority of the founding members were Jungian analysts.
In order to protect the high professional standard of the work, the ISST defined guidelines for training in Sandplay Therapy as well as guidelines for becoming a teaching member. At the same time it provided and continues to provide an international forum for the exchange of professional experience with Sandplay Therapy.
The years that followed are marked by regular international congresses of the growing membership of ISST all over the world. ISST congresses took place in England, America, Canada, Germany, Japan, Italy, and Switzerland.
As a fruit of the efforts of the ISST and the untiring work of Dora Kalff the foundation of many National Societies followed, allowing members to create specific structures adapted to particular national needs.
Australia & New Zealand
Several ISST Teaching Members have conducted Sandplay Therapy programs Australia and New Zealand.
The ANZ Sandplay Therapy Institute’s in-depth and graded learning program, commenced in 2015, was the first complete learning program in Sandplay Therapy as devised by Dora Kalff available in this region to Psychotherapists, Psychologists, Psychiatrists, Social Workers, Play Therapists, Counsellors, health professionals and advanced students in related fields.