IFS Leadership Fellows Program |  Healing & Justice in Action

The Foundation for Self Leadership envisions a world in which there is greater racial and social equity and justice and will do all in its power to contribute toward realizing this vision. The IFS Leadership Fellows Program is a modest step in that direction.

Message about the Program from Foundation Board Member Requina Barnes, LICSW


CONTEXT. Given a history of systemic exclusion and discrimination based on ethnic, economic, or cultural factors, communities in the US and around the world have been sidelined and marginalized. As a result, many individuals and groups in these communities have not been able to pursue an unhindered path of growth and development—let alone thrive—engage fully in societal life.

APPROACH. In an attempt to change that reality and contribute to collective healing, especially within such communities, in which generational trauma has caused a cycle of pain and suffering and flourishing opportunities have been stifled, the Foundation and its sister organization, IFS Institute, are launching the IFS Leadership Fellows Program in 2022. (Josh, link IFS Institute to

INVITATION. Are you already making or interested in making a significant difference in your community, community agency or organization? Might you use support to deepen your own leadership capacity for facilitating change and healing?

If so, we invite you to join a team of like-minded individuals (coaches, therapists, activists, faith-based or not-for-profit organizational leaders, or other influencers) who have taken on, or aspire to, leadership roles in their community.

Engage with them at an impactful level in championing positive change through deeper (inner and interpersonal) understanding across dimensions of culture, race, gender and ethnicity in our society.

The Foundation for Self Leadership and its sister organization, IFS Institute, are searching for 10 leaders/potential leaders from the Global Majority and/or LGBTQIA+ communities, for its inaugural cohort with the intention to contribute to greater societal inclusion, equity and access.

Consider applying to the IFS Leadership Fellows Program (or if you know someone who might be interested, please invite them to apply).



10 Fellows will be selected in Q4 of 2021. Program to be launched in 2022


Two-Step Process: Expressions of Interest to be screened + Candidates Invited to Apply


IFS L1 or L2 training (100 hours in total) in the context of racial & social justice

+ Leadership Deepening Program (four hours per month)

+ Guidance, Mentorship & Peer Support (two hours per month)

+ Independent readings and inner work (two hours per month)

+ Invitation to attend IFS annual conference


To support current and future leaders from the Global Majority and LGBTQIA+ communities that have been traditionally marginalized by society due to issues around race, ethnicity, gender, socioeconomics, immigration, among others.

This Program is in service of change to ensure inclusion, equity and access to growth, healing, connection and transformation of self and community—in the Fellows’ communities, the IFS community, and beyond.


Individuals currently engaged or willing to engage actively to make a difference in their community, among them: community agency directors, coordinators, and psychotherapists; leaders of human-services or faith-based organizations; as well as social activists and advocates for the empowerment of marginalized groups.


Anticipated Outcomes

During and upon completion of the Program, IFS Fellows can expect to:

  • Be empowered at both individual and group levels, building through group dynamics a sense of shared leadership and shared power.

  • Develop stronger leadership abilities, inspired by their inner wisdom and deeply anchored within their own identities, histories, and unique gifts and contributions.

  • Gain deeper understanding of their own internal systems, through the lens of IFS, and recognize how parts can become—when unheeded and unaddressed—counterproductive, negatively influencing their lives and others.

  • Learn how to go through, heal and release their own pain and facilitate healing by awakening collective Self in their own circles.

  • Gain greater clarity about societal issues through the lens of personal suffering and historical and family legacy burdens.

  • Expand their sense of human connectedness, interpersonal collaborations, and confidence in collective ability to solve societal problems, whether locally or globally.

  • Increase their proficiency in guiding and facilitating with others the IFS process of healing as well as their capacity to lead in their community by deepening their own capacity for Self leadership.

  • Develop a clear plan of action for bringing IFS as a paradigm and a practice within the communities or agencies they serve.

  • Create and be part of a supportive cohort of IFS Fellows and have the opportunity to support future cohorts.

Intentions of the Leadership Fellows Program are:

  • To foster innovation, leadership, and capacity for shepherding change.

  • To develop a group of IFS leaders and advocates who will provide access to the IFS paradigm and model in marginalized communities who have been traditionally underserved—consistent with the Foundation and Institute’s vision of bringing Self leadership to the world.

  • To help evolve the IFS Model so as to enhance its accessibility and applicability in a broad range of cultural settings.

  • To rebalance the IFS community to one that is more inclusive and representative of the human community.

Two-Year Commitment: By engaging in the Program, Fellows will commit to:

  • IFS training (level 1 or level 2; approximately 100 hours over several months)

  • Additional eight hours per month over 10 months including leadership development, mentoring, consultation, and smaller group meetings (Fellows will get to weigh in and help finalize the leadership-development curriculum.)

  • Development of a plan of action to enhance their leadership in their communities following the completion of their Program

  • Engagement in peer-mentoring of next group of IFS Fellows for one year and participation as Program Assistants in IFS trainings.

  • Participation at an IFS annual conference

  • Development of plan of action for contributing to community healing.

Note: Fellows will have an opportunity to weigh on designing certain elements of the Program. They will receive stipends and support for engaging in IFS trainings and attending the IFS conference.



Interested in being an IFS Leadership Fellow?

If so, please be on the lookout for the next application process in late 2023. Thank you.
Here is a sneak preview of what will be requested.

  • A description of the community you are supporting (or you wish to support) and your interest/passion with regards to that community (no more than 500 words)

  • How you see yourself as a leader and the impact you have had already in this community (no more than 500 words)

  • What obstacles you might face along the way and what you need to overcome such obstacles (250 words)

  • Your long-term goals and vision regarding this community (2-4 years) and how the IFS Fellowship program may support you in meeting this vision (250 words).

If you would like to nominate someone to be considered for a Fellowship, please describe your reasons for nominating them and include contact information for them (email address and mobile phone).

Please email your interest or nomination of another to: with IFS Leadership Fellows in the subject line. (The Leadership Fellowship Team will then contact you or the nominee for further information.)

The IFS Foundation Fellowship Coordinating Team intends to select Fellows by the end of 2021, with the Fellowship beginning in 2022.

The Foundation invites you to sponsor Fellows. For more information, please write us at or make a designated gift to this program at: