Author Archives: jofacilitator

About jofacilitator

On Sept 1, 2020, I will celebrate 50 years of work with the Institute of Cultural Affairs, facilitating meetings, groups, communities, and organizations, making it possible for ordinary people to have a voice in decisions that affect their lives.

Fifty Years of Facilitation

September 1, 2020 marks 50 years since I first started working with ICA. At the end of this calendar year, I will be wrapping up my career, but not my vocation. I’m still working on what that looks like — … Continue reading

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Recognizing Unconsious Bias

I have a degree in Education and Anthropology, from the University of Iowa in 1970.  Not only did I study cultures for my Anthro major, but I was active in the university’s International Centre and was good friends with people … Continue reading

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Making Clustering Ideas Easier Using a Puzzle Image

The clustering stage of the Consensus Workshop Method is often really challenging, especially to those (most of us) who have been deeply trained to sort and categorize ideas: “Which of these is not like the other?” Somehow the capacity to … Continue reading

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A Summary of My Professional Pathway as a Facilitator

I am declaring 2020 as the last year of my career, but not of my vocation! This essay was written as a submission for IAF “Facilitator Emeritus” certification. It was limited to 1500 words, so there is a lot of … Continue reading

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Ordinary People Making a Positive Difference: Last Two Stories from the Party!

Everybody Welcome Story Immanuel Mennonite Church, Harrisonburg, Virginia, Rev. Matthew Bucher, August 2016 On the invite to the birthday party there is an image of a sign saying “Everybody Welcome”, from East Enders Against Racism.  The sign recalls the ones … Continue reading

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Virginia Kanyagonya’s Story: Ordinary People Making a Positive Difference

Virginia Kanyagonya’s Story Pidia Joseph Allieu has made it his life’s work to eradicate sexual violence in Sierra Leone. Although the precise figures are impossible to confirm, it’s estimated that more than 200,000 women were the victims of gender-based violence … Continue reading

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Vicki Ziegler’s Story: Ordinary People Making a Positive Difference

Vicki Ziegler’s Story A year ago last summer, some of us neighbourhood acquaintances were chatting as we rolled up our mats after a pleasant, early morning yoga class in the local park with which we are all loosely associated as … Continue reading

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Susan Reynold’s Story: Ordinary People Making a Positive Difference

There is a trio of singer/songwriters in Hamilton who call themselves the Ladybird Sideshow Project. The women of this group have been friends for a decade and regardless of the changes in their lives, their love of music remains a … Continue reading

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Staci Kentish’s Story: Ordinary People Making a Positive Difference

I like to check out reddit.com every day. It’s a site where anyone can post content, readers up or down vote each post and you see content in order of what’s been upvoted the most, so readers play a role … Continue reading

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Scott Russell’s Story: Ordinary People Making a Positive Difference

One story that I heard not long ago speaks to me in a profound way about the way people impact others through small gestures – ones that acknowledge what is good and offer encouragement. This is a story about a … Continue reading

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