|On 1st April 2002 members of the UK's three largest international
aromatherapy associations merged to form a united representative body known
as The International Federation of Professional Aromatherapists (IFPA).
IFPA is a democratic practitioner-led professional association and a UK
registered charity, and consists of over 3000 practising members worldwide.
regading IFPA's formation began in July 1999 by the Chairs of the International
Society of Professional Aromatherapists (ISPA), the Register of Qualified
Aromatherapists (RQA) and the International Federation of Aromatherapists
(IFA). The planning process was subsequently directed by a Steering Committee
consisting of the three association Chairs and their Vice-Chairs. Additional
committee members from each association also played a key role, addressing
a wide range of issues including those of the constitution, administration,
education and training, public relations, insurance and publications.
All those involved worked tirelessly to ensure that the amalgamation
process progressed as smoothly as possible, and produced a positive outcome
for both the practising members and the public.
Official Launch was held at the Parliamentary House of Lords on 25th
April 2002, hosted by Baroness Doreen Massey and opened by the actress
Jenny Seagrove. Attending the celebratory event were guests from every
sector of the aromatherapy profession and essential oil industry, together
with leading lights in complementary medicine as a whole. The IFPA's
acting Co-Chairs Linda Orton-Jay, Ian Smith and Gabriel Mojay each
gave short speeches about the aims and objectives of the IFPA and the
future prospects for the aromatherapy profession.
Ian Smith, Gabriel Mojay and Linda Orton-Jay
with Labour Peer the Baroness Massey and actress Jenny Seagrove
at IFPA's official House of Lords Launch on 25th April 2002
IFPA's Aims and Objectives:
To advance the knowledge and practice
of professional aromatherapy through maintaining and ensuring a high
standard of vocational education as a prerequisite for individual membership
of the IFPA.
To publicly promote the professional practice of aromatherapy by its members.
To regulate this practice in a way that ensures high standards of professionalism
To encourage and facilitate scientific research applicable to the practice
IFPA is committed to the professional development
of aromatherapy at all levels of government, and actively supports the
parliamentary statutory regulation of the profession as the most effective
way of safeguarding the public and establishing a common level of practice.
IFPA's Executive Council
IFPA's executive Council consists of a Chairman, two Vice-Chairs,
an Honorary Secretary, a Treasurer, and 10 further Council members who
chair subcommittees concerned with the following areas of concern:
Education and training
Accreditation and examinations
Publicity and public relations
Research and scientific matters
Membership and regional group coordination
Government affairs and regulation
The essential oil trade and industry
Full membership for
practising aromatherapists who meet the full requirements.
International membership for practising
aromatherapists who meet the full requirements and who reside outside the United
Student membership for those who
are currently undertaking training in aromatherapy and who are not yet in professional
practice, allowed for a maximum of three years.
Associate membership for practising
aromatherapists who do not fully meet the requirements for full membership, but
who are sufficiently qualified to be allowed a period of two years to undertake
further training in order to meet them.
Fellowship awarded to senior members
who have served the Federation or its antecedents.
Honorary membership awarded in recognition
of services to the profession.
Friend open to those who are not
in professional practice, but who have an interest in aromatherapy.
Requirements for full membership
IFPA's requirements for full membership are based on the
standards of education and training established by the Council, as recommended
by the Education Committee. They are founded on 250 hours of in-class training
provided by educational establishments that are accredited and inspected
by IFPA's Accreditation Committee.
IFPA's professional aromatherapy training
The therapeutic application of essential oils from theoretical
and practical standpoints should consist of a minimum of 120 hours of in-class
training. Instruction in therapeutic massage should consist of no less
than 60 hours of in-class training, and studies in anatomy and physiology
should comprise a minimum of 50 hours of in-class tuition. Each of these
main components should entail extensive private study and practice additional
to in-class tuition. This should include 50 hours of logged unsupervised
massage practice and 60 hours of aromatherapy case studies. A further 20
in-class hours or equivalent of business and ethical studies is also required.
IFPA is committed to auditing and documenting
all aspects of the therapeutic outcomes of its members' professional
practice, including the rare occasions where there may be mild side effects.
IFPA has initiated among its membership an adverse reactions reporting
programme — so
that we can expand our knowledge base in a way that further enhances clinical
safety and best practice. At the same time, we hope to be able to further
promote our gentle yet effective therapy as one that is increasingly employed
in stress management, chronic pain relief, elderly and hospice care, and
in health improvement and disease prevention generally. Through working to create a more cohesive, united profession,
our intention is to underpin these applications with a broader range of
practitioner-based clinical studies.
International networking: building a global
IFPA is actively seeking to establish closer
links with aromatherapy organizations and practitioners abroad. As a part
of this process, it seeks to encourage its international members to form
approved local branches of the Federation, so that the IFPA can truly fulfil
its role as an international representative body for the profession. With respect to national aromatherapy
bodies, IFPA remains eager to strengthen ties and exchange information to
work with its sister organizations overseas to further establish, on
a worldwide basis, professional aromatherapy as a viable, respected system
of modern natural medicine.