Our history

The therapeutic method of Sandplay, created by Dora Kalff, arrived in Brazil during the 1980’s, due to the efforts of our fellow therapists, Denise Ramos, Fátima Gambini, and Elizabeth Zimmermann.

Denise Ramos completed her trainning process with Estelle Weinrib, in the United States, while Fátima Gambini, was trainned in Zurich, Switzerland, where she took part in the study groups and seminars led by Dora Kalff. Elizabeth Zimmermann was also trained in Zurich and attended group meetings and seminars led by Dora Kalff, but she completed her training as a Sandplay therapist with Ruth Ammann.

When they came back to Brazil, with their baggage of knowledge and experience in Sandplay, they set study and supervision groups, as well as therapy processes, aiming to spread both theoretical and practical knowledge about that new therapeutic method.

In the 1990’s, Aicil Franco returned from Zurich and organized the first Sandplay course in Brazil. A little while after that, PROTEJA was created as a group for studying Sandplay. That group was responsible for the first visit of Ruth Ammann to Brazil, in the year 2000.

This movement fostered the reunion of other groups of jungian therapists (from SBPA, AJB, PUC-SP, and related groups) in São Paulo city and, in March of 2002, the Cooperativo group was created, under the orientation of Fátima Gambini’s experience. That group was part of the project of broadening the space for people interested in studying Sandplay in many parts of the country.

From that point on, several members of the International Society  for Sandplay Therapy (ISST) – including Rie Rogers, Harriet Friedmam, Ruth Ammann, and Rosa Naponiello – came to Brazil in order to conduct seminars and workshops, as well as to supervise the therapy practice in Sandplay groups.

Stimulated by Ruth Ammann, who was, at that time, president of ISST and a constant presence in Brazil, the project of creating a Brazilian institute of Sandplay was born.

In August of 2008, Brazil was chosen by ISST to receive a week of intensive trainning in Sandplay. Five international teaching members came to Brazil. During that week, Zilda Maria de Paula Machado (AJB) and Marion Anderson (SBPA) were the first Brazilian therapists approved as independent members of ISST.

On July 2nd, 2011, the Instituto Brasileiro de Terapia de Sandplay/Brazilian Institute of Sandplay Therapy (IBTSANDPLAY) was founded with 13 ISST members. It was acknowledged in the 21st International ISST Congress in Kartause Ittingen, Switzerland.

Today, IBTSANDPLAY has 23 therapist members and 6 teaching members.