Training and facilitation skills are key to the success of community organizing and social change work. People with these skills support groups by developing new leaders, transferring knowledge between generations, creating more participation within their groups, educating and engaging constituents, supporting effective meetings and decision making, resolving conflict and providing skills for successful, creative, and disciplined actions.
Yet, few people who play the role of educator, trainer or facilitator in their work are offered an opportunity to hone their skills among a community of peers.
With this in mind, a network of West Virginia organizers teamed up with Training for Change to create The West Virginia Trainers Project. If you’re a West Virginia organizer who wants to take their training and facilitation skills to the next level, the West Virginia Trainer Project is for you.
How do I get involved?
The annual West Virginia Training for Trainers is the on-ramp to The West Virginia Trainers Project. Graduates from this training are eligible to participate in other components of The West Virginia Trainers Project. These components include:
- A year-long coaching program in which participants get individualized support to apply new skills and frameworks to their day-to-day organizing work
- Access to an Advanced Training for Trainers in West Virginia to continue growing as a facilitator in a community of peers
- Access to bi-annual Design Labs in which participants get the chance to learn new approaches for a specific facilitation challenge such as, How to Facilitate Group Conflict
Contact Katey Lauer at firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up for the project mailing list, including updates on upcoming opportunities.
Participants in The West Virginia Trainers Project will:
- Gain greater awareness about themselves and their strengths as facilitators;
- Get a chance to take risks, experiment and refine skills in a safe and supportive environment;
- Get the stimulation of fresh approaches and increased options;
- Receive personal guidance from experienced trainers in a small group setting;
- Learn new tools that are easily adapted, principles of workshop design, skills for working with diversity and a better understanding of how to use experiential education methods effectively.
Just two years in, we’ve been proud to work with 50 West Virginians from 27 organizations across the state! They include:
Advocates for a Safe Water System
American Civil Liberties Union of West Virginia
American Friends Service Committee
Call to Action for Racial Justice
Mountain Lakes Preservation Alliance
Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition
Step by Step
The West Virginia Community Development Hub
The West Virginia Food and Farm Coalition
The West Virginia Healthy Kids and Families Coalition
Try This West Virginia
Unlimited Future, Inc.
Wesleyan College Center for Community Engagement
West Virginia Center for Civic Life
West Virginia Citizen Action Group
West Virginia Council of Churches
West Virginia Sierra Club
Women of Color for Change
WVU Food Justice Lab