How did we come up with the idea for a toolbox summer camp? C.T. Butler and I have been exploring how Intentional Communities and other groups succeed and how they understand (or often misunderstand) consensus. The idea of a “toolbox,” which members regularly update and use to build new culture, solve conflicts and grow as people, isn’t a new idea. What goes in it varies but adding to it seems key.
More than just a technique like Non-Violent Communication, “consensus is a cultural paradigm…a way of being in the world,” writes trainer Maikwe Schaub Ludwig. Yet few people get much more than a day or two of training in this “way of being.” Many more find themselves practicing it with no training!
A space happened to open up in Heathcote Community’s education calendar. And when C.T. and I considered it for a weekend slot, we realized we had the chance to really help people go deep and get it!
We sprang into action and put together many of the ideas we’d been collecting. Ta dah! Toolbox Camp!
Below is the text of our brochure:
Are you currently part of an organization, activist group, non-profit, Cohousing or Intentional Community that’s having trouble with governance, decisionmaking or communication?
• Does your group feel a time pressure when making decisions?
• In discussions, does everyone speak?
• Does your group accomplish its goals?
• Do some people dominate? Is there burnout?
• Is the workload uneven? Organizational structure vague?
• Does it seem members just don’t hear each other?
C.T. Butler and Wren Tuatha been going deeper into the nature of consensus, how to teach it and how to help groups succeed. We’ve gotten clear that consensus is amazing and transformative, but that it’s a major paradigm shift for most groups. It’s more than just exchanging Robert’s Rules for Butler’s. C.T. isn’t just offering new software, so to speak, but a whole new operating system.
We are offering these skill building experiences designed to help Communities, activist groups, non-profits, spiritual groups, families, etc., succeed in their goals through awareness of the structures of group dynamics—decisionmaking, conflict resolution, mediation, listening, and communication that integrates head, heart and gut.
SOCIAL TECHNOLOGY TOOLBOX SUMMER CAMP
July 15-24, 2011
A 10 day immersion, starting with a weekend workshop called Consensus, Body and Soul. Then, together, we’ll create temporary consensus-based community. The mornings will be devoted to ZEGG Forum and deeper consensus workshops. Each afternoon, we will add techniques and perspectives like Enneagrams, JoHari Window, Spiral Dynamics, Heart of Now, etc. The group will make decisions together at plenaries and participants can offerπ content of their own each evening through Open Space Technology.
Simply, we’re all about finding the voice of the group. After thirty years in the field of consensus, C.T. presents a clear vision of egalitarian freedom through use of structure that brings the common values to life within the group.
Some lessons are collected from other wise travelers, others are plucked from our own experiences in groups. Even as we make our offerings, the paradigm is leaderless and participant generated. We are curious about you. What do you bring?
Request a brochure with the application form at email@example.com. Costs include fixed fees for materials, food and lodging, and a sliding scale for tuition.
Structured programming begins Friday evening, July 15. and ends at noon on Sunday, July 24. Lodging options are camping and the Heathcote Mill bunkroom. Accommodations are rustic and, like most forests, the land does have poison ivy/oak and ticks that carry lyme disease. Heathcote is a vegetarian facility, and drug and alcohol free. Carpooling is encouraged. You will receive a packet with directions, a Heathcote orientation, packing lists, schedules and other logistics upon registration. The packet will include requests for food allergy and other special needs information.
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