CAT in New Zealand

Background to CAT in New Zealand

CAT developments in NZ began when Marisol Cavieres a CAT practitioner and supervisor from the UK moved to NZ in early 2005. In conjunction with another Auckland based CAT practitioner, Allyson Waite, they ran a series of introductory CAT workshops around New Zealand (Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin, Wellington) between 2005-2008. In addition they provided intensive 3 day workshops to inpatient mental health staff teams for Marlborough District Health Board (South Island) and Bay of Plenty District Health Board (North Island). They also ran pre-conference and in-conference CAT workshops at national conferences in New Zealand, in 2005 (NZ College of Clinical Psychologists conference) and 2006 (National Borderline Disorder Conference).

The interest in CAT began to spread to other specialties and in April 2008, Marisol provided consultation, and training to primary care managers and GP’s using a CAT approach to formulation, to assist with their decision making process for patients seeking help. She also taught introductory level CAT to clinical psychology trainees, and counselling psychology trainees at all three Auckland Universities. Marisol continued to provide introductory and advanced workshops in CAT across New Zealand until February 2011 when she returned to live in England.

As a result of the CAT workshops, interest in developing further CAT training in NZ continued to grow and several clinicians have continued to develop their clinical skills in CAT through ongoing CAT supervision. “CAT tourism” has also hit NZ shores, with Steve Potter introducing his Versatile Therapist workshop in Auckland, in December 2006, and Therapeutic Moments workshop in 2008. In 2010 he provided teaching and mini CAT therapies to the new intake of trainees.

NZ and Australian CAT’s have formed a joint “national” association ANZACAT (Australian and New Zealand Association of CAT) and this body is responsible for supporting the development of CAT in both countries. December 2010 saw the launch of the first NZ CAT skills training course in Auckland, a course jointly run by Marisol Cavieres and Steve Potter. The first New Zealand trained practitioner was accredited in 2013.


CAT training in New Zealand:

In October 2015, the first intake of Part one practitioner training began and it is anticipated that there will be new intakes every two years. Practitioner training involves face to face seminars, written assignments, reading, supervised case work and training delivered over the internet. There are also ongoing training seminars, offered by both national and international speakers for those who are ‘CAT interested” as well as those in the training program. We have set up a national database of those interested in CAT and anyone can be on the database and receive information about upcoming training.

In 2018, we are planning a new intake of part 1 practitioner training and our first cohort begin their part 2 training. We are looking forward to welcoming Lee Crothers from Australia and Henrietta Batchelor from the UK who will be visiting and carrying out training seminars.

Making contact:

We have CAT accredited practitioners in all the major NZ cities (Dunedin, Christchurch, Wellington, Auckland) and there are four accredited CAT supervisors also available. For any enquiries contact, Louise Smith on, or Allyson Waite on


Visit the CAT in New Zealand website



ICATA Official Documents




Training Guidelines


Ethical Guidelines

Contact information

Please send all general enquiries here
See our contact page for further information