Facilitating on Facilitation
Yesterday, the day ended with a session on Transformative Dialogue: where honest exchange promotes behavioural change that can transform relationships on individual and collective levels. It was stressed, and demonstrated, by Pioneer Facilitator Safiya Ibn Garba, that such a dialogue requires a strong and well equipped facilitator who understands that, ”Facilitation is the art, not of putting ideas into people’s heads but of drawing the ideas out”(Anon).
Day Six of the 2014 Sochi Camp began with a session on the general importance of Facilitation methods. The Delegates were given information on four specific methods utilised frequently by Generations For Peace:
Storytelling: Everyone has stories to tell, and Storytelling is an important method for sharing and being heard. Storytelling helps learn about other’s experiences, cultures, values, and perceptions. Understanding different cultures and experiences is an important component in peace building.
Fishbowl: In a Fishbowl some of the participants form an inner circle where they discuss a topic, and the remaining participants form an outer circle where they listen and observe. This method involves everyone. Fishbowl method can be used for a variety of different purposes: to stimulate conversation, practise active listening or group discussion skills, practise facilitation skills etc.
Focus Group: A focus group is a form of qualitative Research in which a group of people is asked about their perceptions, opinions, beliefs, and attitudes towards a product, service, concept, or idea. Questions are asked in an interactive group setting where participants are free to talk with other group members.
The task for this session had the Delegates focus on one method, or aspect, of facilitation and then present their method or aspect to the entire group of 71 Delegates.