Weekend of workshops on Consensus Decision Making and Facilitation @ 195 Mare st E8 3QE.
Are you part of a collective?
Organising action, events, running an autonomous space?
We are as well!
It’s occurred to some of us that there was room for lots of improvement in the way our collectives work, be it in daily life, space organising or during traditional meetings!
We, and people around us, are sometimes not very good at looking after ourselves, at not letting ourselves burn out, at not sacrificing ourselves for the “cause”, at taking other people’s needs into account, at communicating effectively, at being aware of how what we are doing/saying can impact on other people, at dealing with criticism, disagreements, conflicts, anger, feedback, challenges, at having productive, pleasant and empowering meetings…
We know that this is not the sexiest part of what we do. “Talking about how I feel rather than organising the next blockade? Naaaaahh!” But sacrificing ourselves for our goals always sounds like a defeat to us. We want our groups to look like the sort of society that we’re fighting for.
We want them to be healthy and to run smoothly. We want to feel safe, and to be inspired, whenever we spend time in them. And we think that we’ll all achieve more that way, as well. Strengthening the way we work together is a key way of strengthening everything we do.
We’d like to run regular events, but the first weekend will be 3rd/4th July, with two all-afternoon workshops (1pm-7pm) from the collective Seeds for Change, on Consensus Decision Making (Saturday 3rd July) and Facilitating Consensus (Sunday 4th July).
–Consensus Decision Making–
Saturday 3rd July, 1-7 pm
Consensus decision making is a creative and dynamic way of reaching agreement between all members of a group, finding solutions that everyone actively supports – or at least can live with. Consensus is neither compromise nor unanimity – it aims to go further by weaving together everyone’s best ideas and most important concerns – a process that often results in surprising and creative solutions. It’s about everyone working together to meet both the individual’s and the group’s needs.
The workshop will be fully participatory, and focus on enabling each other to develop key skills and qualities for productive, enjoyable, empowering group work – such as good listening, communicating well, addressing each other’s needs, giving and receiving feedback, common ground and disagreements.
Sunday 4th July, 1-7 pm
Have you ever sat through a meeting that has dragged on and on, with tempers running high, people talking over each other and no decisions being made? Meetings are a necessary part of working in any group – they give us the chance to share information, to reach decisions and to get jobs done. But meetings have another important function, which is often forgotten about – group maintenance.
A good group also involves, supports and empowers the participants, creating energy and enthusiasm. A sense of community is the basis for successful group work and social change. Good facilitation will help you to achieve all of this. This workshop will focus on developing skills and understanding to help us help our groups work well together, and make good decisions, using consensus.
Unfortunately numbers are limited (25 people), so please contact us to reserve your space :
londonfreeschool at riseup.net
There will also be vegan dinner afterwards on both evenings for all the participants.
Some ideas we’ve had for future workshops or discussions are:
* drug addiction and its consequences
* giving and receiving feedback
* dealing with burn out
* non violent communication
* sexual consent
* conflict resolution
* safer spaces policies
* open discussions to share what’s happening in our collectives, support
each other in making them work better…
If any of those interest you, please do let us know as well, even if you can’t manage the July weekend.
Let’s make our spaces and collectives better for all of us to be in!
at 195 Mare Street, Hackney, E8 3QE
In terms of accessibility, have a look at the Access Codes for the building.
In short there is a ramp at the front for the steps but there is no wheelchair accessible toilets.