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WORKSHOP: #BrandingYourselfBeautiful & Thoughts on Facilitation

May 7, 2015

BYB_know

Today I’ll be facilitating a workshop at York Woods Library near Jane and Finch through Urban Arts all around the theme of Branding Yourself. It’s a workshop for young women to re-envision and re-imagine themselves with the most beautiful lens and decide how they want to be portrayed by create their own media.

Each workshop I find myself pushing the bounds of my comfort zone to offer unique and fresh programming for clients. It’s an exciting process to truly live up to my slogan: creative, quality, custom workshops. The creative part is easiest but it still requires a good hunk of effort to be intentional and unique in the delivery of a solid workshop. And then there is quality, what things can I offer that is different from other workshops? I constantly have to remind myself to be present, mindful, attentive and again PRESENT. Quality boils down to the clothes I wear the day of programming, to the reference sheets I hand out for additional info, to the evaluation questions I craft for the session. Work ethic and professionalism is something I strive for but I also am trying to elevate my game. Being early and taking the extra prep time is one thing, but to actualy carve out a work plan like it’s a polished sculpture is quiet another.

And of course, the most challenging thing as a facilitator is to not fall into the trap of recycling the same workshops, to a point. Yes many exercises, themes and activities are tried-tested and true but the custom is the tricky part. How different does a female empowerment workshop look like for a group of teenagers vs. adult activists? What are the ways in which I incorporate access into my workshops (different abled participants, ASL interpretation, multiple learning styles etc.)? Would a workshop in Toronto’s east end look different than the exact same work plan on a reserve in Kitsumkalum, BC? Customizing programming and considering the diversity within the group you are working with is one area that I am being more aware of and training myself to be more flexible in my approach.

Fingers-crossed that I provide an enriching program for the young women in today’s session but I will also be learning and taking cues from the group. What do they need to get the most out of the program? How can I facilitate in a way that is inclusive but also specialized? My heart is open and my mind is hungry to learn. Wish me luck on my workshop today and all the days to come.

Over and out

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