The second year-long Facilitator Development Program (FDP) will begin in the Fall of 2018, with a team of experienced facilitators that includes Molly Brown, Mutima Imani, and Constance Washburn, and guest teachers including Joanna Macy.   The FDP is one of several pathways available for deepening theoretical understanding and facilitation skills in the Work That Reconnects.

We aim to meet the needs of people who aspire to facilitate the Work and want to develop their skills in facilitation and group dynamics so they feel confident in bringing the Work to their communities. The program gives special attention to social justice issues and reframing the Work That Reconnects to undo oppression.

We are offering programs on two parallel tracks:

  • one for People of the Global Majority in Oakland, with four weekend workshops and study and practice recommendations between weekends.  If you are interested in this track, please contact Mutima Imani for an application and more information.
  • a year-long online program open to all aspiring facilitators, with webinars every 4 weeks, study circles that meet between webinars, prep work (reading and videos) before each webinar, and online discussion forums. (The online track for the fist FDP began in September 2017 with over 50 participants from 12 countries.)

If you are interested in the online program for 2018-19, please submit the Application Form after the first of the year. Applications will be reviewed in March in the order they are received; applicants will be notified by the end of March.  In the meantime, please try to attend at least one 4-10 day Work That Reconnects workshop, one of the prerequisites for the program.

Context and Content:

In this moment in history, people are waking up to the realization that our society is not sustainable. Violence in its many manifestations is causing pain and suffering. Climate disruption, systemic racism and oppression, endless war, species extinction, and our political reality forment fear and despair. Many people are looking for ways to share their pain for the world in a supportive community. They also want to offer their particular gifts to contribute to a Great Turning to a life-sustaining and just society. This program will give facilitators the support needed to make this transformational journey themselves and to assist others on the path to coming back to life. 

One’s ability to guide others through the Work That Reconnects is enhanced by one’s own personal work, knowledge of and engagement in social and ecological challenges, developing one’s skills as a facilitator, and working to dismantle the social systems and conditioning that induce oppressive and compliant behavior (often unconsciously).  This course will weave all these dimensions together.

The year long FDP online Program will follow the Spiral of the Work moving through Gratitude, Honoring our Pain, Seeing with Fresh Eyes, and Going Forth. Our textbooks include Coming Back to Lifeand Active Hopealong with other materials on environmental and political challenges, anti-oppression, social justice issues, facilitation skills, working with trauma, and living the Great Turning with support from mindfulness, nature connection, diversity, and joy.

Those participating in the program will also be expected to do homework between webinars, participate in regular study circles, and engage in personal/spiritual practices and community activism.

Perhaps most importantly this program will help build a widening community of facilitators who support each other through sharing resources and experiences, as well as helping each other face the difficult times ahead with open hearts and minds.

Program topics include; WTR theory; systems thinking, deep time, the spiral, deep ecology, the Great Turning, confronting and exploring together current social, environmental, political, economic, and spiritual crises as well as facilitating WTR practices; workshop design; principles of inclusive, respectful facilitation; group process; awareness of power, privilege, and systemic white domination and racism, as well as “best practices” for counteracting that social conditioning. We will also explore what it means to be living the Great Turning: exploration of how each of us makes the Great Turning real in our personal, spiritual, and community lives.

Structure

Monthly two-hour interactive webinars on Zoom include experiential practices of the Work as well as presentations and small group discussions.  There will be at least 2 – 4 hours of homework per month, meetings between webinars with a study circle and with an ally in the Work, online discussions to participate in, and recommended individual practices.  Participants will also plan and present a Work That Reconnects workshop, either in partnership with other participants or solo depending on location and resources.  If possible, regional retreats may be held at the end of the program year.

Tuition

Tuition for the online program for 2018-19 is estimated to be $1100 per person, with a sliding scale from $800 to $1400, to accommodate people’s differing financial situations. Tuition will compensate the facilitators for planning the program and leading the webinars, plus guest teachers and consultants, as well as administrative costs. Scholarships will be available based on enrollment numbers. The FDP may also support a program for People of the Global Majority with materials and scholarships as available.

Prerequisites and Application

We ask that applicants to the FDP have read Coming Back to Life and Active Hopeand have attended a Work That Reconnects retreat (at least 3-4 days in length) before starting the program. You can find facilitators and retreats listed on the Work That Reconnects website. If needed, we encourage you to organize a workshop in your region with a guest facilitator.

Here is a link to an Facilitator Development Program Application Form.

Become part of the Work That Reconnects Network. Join as a friend of the Work That Reconnects to receive notifications and updates. You can also apply to be listed as a facilitator if you have previous experience and have attended intensives or workshops.

We also recommend reading the Deep Times Journal for the most current thinking about the Work and to learn more about what the global Work That Reconnects community is doing.