Working in a Culturally Sensitive way in CBT

Taf Kunorubwe

Tuesday, 5 July 2022


Inherent within the ethos of the NHS and Primary Care Mental Health Services is that people from all sections of the community should have a chance to benefit from evidence-based psychological therapies. Despite this, clients from BAME communities are under-represented in referrals and tend to have poorer outcomes from Primary Care Mental Health Services (Baker, 2020). In addition, disparity in access and outcomes exist in Secondary and Specialist Mental Health Care Services. Such inequalities continue to be a cause for concern with front line staff, services, policy makers and the psychological professions.

This session will focus on current thinking and recommendations for improving outcomes for clients from diverse backgrounds using culturally sensitive CBT. Culturally Sensitive CBT tends to look much more like CBT as provided to majority service users, but with adaptations made on a case-by-case basis by therapists, service users or even interpreters (Beck, 2016).

The event will be equivalent to 2.3/4hrs of CPD.


This workshop will:
• Provide a working definition of Culture and Culturally Sensitive CBT
• Consider common difficulties or barriers to enquiring about client’s culture within CBT
• Provide a rationale for Culturally Sensitive CBT within Mental Health Services
• Consider the diversity of clients within your service or your caseload
• Considering how our own cultural backgrounds and experiences, attitudes, and values and biases influence psychological processes
• Review of Culturally Sensitive Assessment, Formulation and Treatment within the context of CBT
• How Supervision and Services can support you in Culturally Sensitive CBT

Learning Objectives

By the end of this session and any associated directed study, attendees will:
• Have an overview of the importance of working in a Culturally Sensitive way in CBT
• Reflect on cultural backgrounds and experiences, attitudes, and values and biases influence psychological processes
• Understand Culturally Sensitive CBT
• Opportunities to apply Culturally Sensitive CBT

Training Modalities

Didactic content, experiential components, polls, Q&A.

Key References

• Beck, A. and Naz, S., 2019. The need for service change and community outreach work to support trans-cultural cognitive behaviour therapy with Black and Minority Ethnic communities. The Cognitive Behaviour Therapist, 12.
• Beck, A. Naz, D. Brooks, M., and Jankowska, M. 2019. Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Service User Positive Practice Guide. [Online] Available from:
• Beck, A., 2016. Transcultural cognitive behaviour therapy for anxiety and depression: A practical guide. Routledge.
• Haarhoff, B., Thwaites, R. and Haarhoff, B.A., 2016. Reflecting on our socio-cultural background: Becoming more culturally sensitive and effective CBT therapists. Reflection in CBT, pp.77-93.
• Hinton, D.E. and Patel, A., 2017. Cultural adaptations of cognitive behavioral therapy. Psychiatric Clinics, 40(4), pp.701-714.
• Memon, A., Taylor, K., Mohebati, L.M., Sundin, J., Cooper, M., Scanlon, T. and de Visser, R., 2016. Perceived barriers to accessing mental health services among black and minority ethnic (BME) communities: a qualitative study in Southeast England. BMJ open, 6(11), p.e012337.
• Rathod, S., Phiri, P. and Naeem, F., 2019. An evidence-based framework to culturally adapt cognitive behaviour therapy. the Cognitive Behaviour Therapist, 12.

About the presenter

Taf Kunorubwe is a BABCP Accredited CBT Therapist & Mindfulness Teacher. He has experience working and supervision within IAPT services as a Low Intensity Worker / PWP and High-Intensity Therapist. As well as service development and special projects aiming to improve access and outcomes for clients from diverse backgrounds. He currently works part-time as the Course Lead for the PGCert in CBT Skills at the University of South Wales and a Guest Lecturer on CBT Training Courses. As well as running a small private practice, with a special interest in improving access and outcomes for clients from diverse backgrounds.

Who should attend

This webinar is suitable for CBT Therapists or Psychological Professionals delivering or supervising CBT interventions.