Session 1 – Our House is on Fire! Exploring our responsibilities as facilitators in this climate emergency

Date:  Tuesday 6 October & Friday 9 October 2020                           Time:      12 noon AEDT
Length:    2 x 90 minutes sessions


  • Ross Allen – Three Seeds Agency
  • Laurel Freeland – Earthed Wisdom & Zenergy Global
  • Dr Hedy Bryant – University
  • Angela Andrews – The fourth R
  • Julia Curtis – The Social Alchemist
  • Simone Maus – Collective Insight & Zenergy Global
  • Pru Gell –
  • Cassie Wright – Nature Matters.

This session is designed for:
Emerging facilitators                      Still developing                   Wisdom Keeper                  Everyone

Will this session be recorded?
No(some experiential processes used do not lend themselves to recording)

Important to note:
This session has two parts; it is preferable that participants of the second part have attended the first.

Session Outline

The purpose of this session is to engage with our responsibilities as facilitators given the climate and ecological crises we are in. 

Irrespective of who our clients are, the sectors they work in, and the challenges they face, all decisions and actions impact on the natural systems that sustain life. These decisions and actions influence whether we collectively move closer to, or further from, a life-sustaining way of life. 

What responsibilities do we have as facilitators given the climate and ecological crises we are in? 

How can we authentically and constructively engage with these issues through our work? 

In this workshop we will explore our responsibilities as facilitators, and how we might co-create climate actions in self and others. We will: 

  • acknowledge the climate and ecological crises and implications for humanity
  • discuss the notion of ‘neutrality’ in facilitation in relation to this climate emergency
  • share our ‘Facilitators Declare’ statement and the stories of its creation
  • explore how you could use this statement to bring a climate lens to your facilitation work. 

The session will include interactive processes and activities that enable experiential insights to inform your facilitation practice. We will also explore ideas about how we can continue to advocate for climate justice – both via our network and through our work. 

I am, because you are – Ubuntu – recognises that we are all bound together; that we achieve ourselves by sharing ourselves with others and caring for those around us. Exploring our responsibilities – individually and collectively – as facilitators in this climate emergency is fundamentally about our shared humanity; it is about who I am, and who we are. 

We can facilitate greater awareness of this climate emergency and support decisions and actions that positively contribute to our shared future. We feel this is our responsibility. Please join us.

Key Learning Objectives

At the end of this session participants will have: 

  • considered our responsibilities as facilitators given the climate and ecological crises we are in
  • discussed and (possibly) committed to co-creating climate actions in self and others
  • an understanding of how to use and/or adapt a Facilitator’s Declare statement in their work
  • a deeper understanding of some approaches to facilitating climate discussions in their practice
  • connected with other facilitators on this learning journey – I am because you are!

How this session contributes to the AFN Community of Practice

The presenters are part of an emergent group of facilitators within the AFN community who are exploring how to co-create climate actions in self and others. We have formed a community-of-practice and wish to connect with and share practice with others in the AFN. We seek wider engagement within the AFN community and invite those who attend our session to consider becoming part of this community-of-practice and/or use our Facilitator’s Declare statement to integrate a climate-reality perspective and practice as a facilitator.

The session will include the following facilitation processes and activities:

  • storytelling vignettes about how we got here and why we were drawn to be a part of this work. This process helps demonstrate the power of storytelling and diversity as a facilitation practice, connecting to people’s hearts and minds
  • heart-space facilitation, exploration of the bigger picture of our climate-reality, our place in it, and how to shift from business as usual to a life enhancing society
  • co-facilitation (participatory presentation processes), moving beyond ideological battles of believers and deniers to informed discussion about how we speak about the climate and ecological crises and engage with the spectrum of viewpoints
  • an invitation to adapt/adopt the ‘Facilitators Declare’ statement to inform your facilitation practice from a climate and ecological perspective
  • whole-group and paired discussions about facilitators relationship to their own work and clients needs in the context of our climate emergency
  • experiential activities based on Deep Ecology (Joana Macy) – an invitation to be involved in the broader climate group – graphic recording to capture the essence of the discussion and insights.

Toolkit takeaways

    • Facilitators Declare statement
    • a multi-dimensional circumplex (graphical model) of key climate issues
    • a summary of the six main perspectives on climate and how to work with them
    • Active Hope context and links
    • a range of ideas, from the simple to the sophisticated, about how to weave
    • climate change issues into your everyday facilitation practice
    • links to accredited information and resources about this climate emergency.

Will this session be recorded?

No – The session won’t translate well as a recording (eg: movement rather than verbal).

Speaker Biographies

This session will be co-facilitated and presented by individuals from an emergent group within the AFN community who are exploring how to co-create climate actions in self and others. We come together to authentically and constructively engage with this climate emergency and the underlying causes of the climate and ecological crises that we face. We draw on the collective knowledge and insights of the group, and the wisdom of those who’ve come before us.

We are involved in facilitation, engagement and training across:

  • social ecology
  • social justice
  • leadership and governance
  • social impact
  • workplace culture and interpersonal relationships
  • environmental education
  • urban ecology
  • land management and conservation
  • natural resource management
  • walking together / reconciliation.