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''Selfish persons are incapable of loving others, but they are not capable of loving themselves either.'' Erich Fromm

Happy New Year!

new year 2023

Dear colleagues, dear friends!

The year 2022 is coming to an end, and I want to make a traditional congratulations, with an analysis of what was, what is and what will be in the life of RGI.

2022 was not an easy year, first of all, because in Ukraine started a war. We all support their struggle and are absolutely sure of their victory. We also support our colleagues from Russia, who find it difficult and dangerous to be free at this difficult time. But this year unexpectedly and almost magically ended the era of the coronavirus pandemic. And the war with the invisible enemy turned into a war with the visible enemy. Those who are engaged in mysticism and esotericism say that the stars are to blame for everything. But I want to believe that we ourselves make our choices, in any case, Gestaltherapy strives to help a person to be independent and make choices on the basis of love.

During 2022, all planned events were held at the RGI, and to a large extent they were dedicated to supporting our colleagues from Ukraine.

We also continue to cooperate with the Vilnius Gestalt Institute, with Brigita Kaleckaite. Riga Gestalt institute`s   trainers and I regularly come to Vilnius and are also very happy to see Brigita in our institute, as an excellent trainer and excellent supervisor. Of course, our friendship continues with Georgia with the Tbilisi Gestalt Institute with Maka Isakadze, also we continue to cooperate with our colleagues from Tbilisi, as well as with Sofiko Varulashvili from the Caucasus Institute of Gestalt Therapy and Family Psychotherapy, and we hope and do everything to ensure that our friendship and the collaboration continued into the following year.

I am very glad that I have the opportunity to cooperate and support our colleagues in Ukraine from the MIGTIM Institute, and I especially want to congratulate Oksana Sychenko and Vadim Grechka on the New Year, who, from the very beginning of the war, have done a tremendous job to support their colleagues in psychotherapy in Ukraine. I want to wish you happiness and victory!

Also, I would like to mention my friends-colleagues from Russia with whom I cooperate, interact and work, but based on the fact that it may not be safe for them, I will not mention their names, but they will understand me and I am happy to support them during this difficult time. I want to congratulate them on the coming New Year, wish them happiness, prosperity and freedom.

In 2022, our 21st Conference “Psychotherapy of Relationships. Pair. Family. Values. Overcoming crises.” took place. About 500 participants gathered at the conference. We opened our conference for colleagues from Ukraine and Russia, thereby trying to maintain adequate relations between adequate people. There were 16 reports at the conference, many were devoted to experiences and support during the outbreak of the war.

There was also a summer intensive, which was attended by more than 120 people. The intensive was devoted to working with trauma, and the traditional intensive carnival was dedicated to hippie culture, under the slogan “Make love, not war.”

All summer long we were preparing for a new enrollment of students and on September 1st we started training future Gestalt therapists, while students of the 5th year successfully completed their studies after 5 years of study. The exam took place and it was taken by our colleague Elena Petrova, head of the Integrative Institute for Gestalt Training. I am very proud of the many years of friendship with Elena Petrova, and her rigor and professionalism in taking the exam ensures that those who pass the exam are real, highly qualified Gestalt therapists. Congratulations to our graduates Anna Gnatčenko, Nataļja Čekanova, Anna Hudorožkova, Kristīne Kreile, Brigita Miesniece, Aiga Gavare, Elīna Leimane, Guna Skrodere, Lana Puntusa, Sandra Krupenko. Successful work and further professional growth!

Also, this year, 3rd year students passed the midterm exam and received a Gestalt Practitioner certificate. Congratulations to Adelija Jankeviča-Dombrovska, Anastasija Podobedova, Ance Pīrāga, Gunta Minka, Kristīne Anže, Kristīne Jansone, Kseniia Shevchenko, Maksims Koržanovs, Natālija Pelipenko, Santa Latkovska, Anastasija Kovaļska, Velga Senkāne, Svetlana Savina, Svetlana Jankauskaite- Grišanova, Jeļena Ivanova, Linda Kiete, Marina Žizņevska, we wish you diligence in your further education and hard work, I hope to see you soon among Gestalt therapist.

This year, a group of supervisors completed the training program. This was already the 3rd enrollment of students under this program, and the training took place in a very difficult period – the period of the pandemic. We had to invent new teaching methods on the go, using modern technologies, which have now become familiar to many, but then, 3 years ago, when the program began, we did everything for the first time. I also want to mention that it was then that we held the world’s first digital gestalt conference, no one had done this before us.  So, the group of gestalt supervisors had successfully graduated, and we congratulate Ilona Belokoņa, Ieva Zumente, Pavel Gavrilin, Inesa Ņilova, Inga Barakuniene, Laura Ragulskyte Pavliuk, Anna Tumanova, Irina Bibik and recommend them as highly professional supervisors who meet all international standards.

I would like to congratulate all Gestalt therapists and RGI teachers who did a great job of teaching Gestalt:  Baiba Pumpina, Daiga Auzina, Nikolay Shcherbakov, Natalya Volpert, Brigita Kaleckaite, Ilona Belokon, Ieva Zumente, Lauma Kasatkina, Inesa Nilova, Julija Perepjolka, Martin Masson, Alena Kolobovnikova, Friedhelm Matthies , Larisa Didkovskaya, Elena Petrova, Sergey Kondurov. Thanks to you, I’m sure the world is getting better!

Also in 2022, my colleagues and I established the Latvian Association of Gestalt Therapists, which has a lot of interesting work ahead such as to create a professional space based on ethics, love and mutual support.


What are we planning for 2023?

First of all, the victory of Ukraine, since prosperity and peace in Latvia and around the world directly depend on this.

In 2023, the 22nd RGI conference is planned. The theme of the conference is “Gestalt therapy-science and/or art”. A separate section at the conference will allocate space for the topic – gestalt therapy for peace. There will also be the 19th intensive RGI, which will be dedicated to the family, family psychotherapy and relationships in a couple. Traditionally, the theme of the carnival will remain a secret until April😊.

Last year, the 4th enrollment to the program for Gestalt supervisors started it work at the Vilnius Gestalt Institute, and our plan is to develop and invest in future supervisors in Lithuania.

Also develop and maintain a gestalt for non-psychotherapists. Our colleague Ilona Belokon created and supervises this program to bring the values of Gestalt to everyday life.

For the next year, we are planning various specializations, such as: Gestalt approach in working with psychopathology (Martin Masson, France), Gestalt therapy in working with families (Sofia Varulashvili, Director of the Caucasus Institute of Gestalt Therapy and Family Psychotherapy, Georgia) , the author’s program ” Gestalt analysis” (Arthur Dombrovsky, your obedient servant), work with groups (Natalya Volpert, RGI trainer).

In August, we will start a new enrollment into program for Gestalt therapists, in September we are planning a traditional student`s conference “Step in Front”. Also in September, my colleagues and I are planning to visit the EAGT conference that will be held in Madrid, and I also want our students to join this promising conference in Spain.

And of course, the main month of the year is October, dedicated to students and exams of the 3rd and 5th courses, for the qualifications of Gestalt Practitioner and Gestalt Therapist, respectively.

I have no doubt that the next year, like the previous years, will be filled with surprises and unexpected events and, of course, will require from us a maximum of creative and professional tone, solidarity, reasonable tolerance, mutual respect and, of course, love.

Dear friends and colleagues, I congratulate you on the upcoming 2023! In my head, as you probably already noticed, the word love is most often born and the second most important word is victory. Therefore, I wish you, next year, that love will win!

Happy New Year!

Many hugs,

Director of Riga Gestalt institute

Arthur Dombrovsky

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