Planning and facilitating training requires a number of tasks that a number of people should share. Campaign organisers should be aware of when and what the relevant training should be at any given time in any given aspect of your progress as a group. The requirements of the group will be constantly changing and need to be regularily revisited to ensure that your group are fully armed with the current facts to support their campaign. Basic needs may include strategic campaign development, gender sensitivity, policy updates and numerous other aspects connected to the cause. If you have a sub group running from your initial umberella group the umberella group could be very instrumental in making sure the needs of their subgroups are met at all times throughout the campaign, however this can not be sustained without regular and efficient training to keep the key group armed with the facts to pass down to their sub groups. Every group should always be open minded to new skills and progress. Training can be delivered by either trainers brought in specifically to meet the needs of the groups or by a designated and dedicated team of co-facilitators adept in the workings of the group and the aims and objectives of the group. Here is a check list to help organise, plan and facilitate training.
- Mkae sure that all organisers and trainers meet well in advance to plan the training and how to execute the training. Mkae sure that the training has been discussed within the group and meets the needs of the group, being based around the conscience of the groups requirements. Constant contact between all involved is a must ot make sure that all aspects of the groups needs are met fully and effeciently and vice versa. Some conversations between the trainers and the organisers may raise options that could be taken back to the group. This in itself can be a valuable and informative process.
- Work out your time scale and allow ample time to accomplish the goals of the training. include time for genaral feedback and questions from the floor. Training must be done in accordance with the groups progress and development. If there is a series of training needs to support thr campaign, check that these needs are specific and direct at teh end of each session by giving a brief overview of the next session and be prepared to adapt your training to meet the needs of the group feedback at the end of each ensuing session.
- Trainersbrought in from outside source need to do extensive research around the participants they will be delivering to as well as the subject matter of the nature of the training. Some things that may be covered here are the fundamental set up of the group, are they coming together for a one off event or are they an ongoing group of activists in longstanding activity. What level of experience do the group have individually and as a collective. What level of training has already been reached.
- Discussion around the groups ethos and directive and their chosen approach to training delivery should be done prior to any training and discussion around any quidelines that may already be in place should also be discussed. A good trainer facilitator will adapt to suit the needs and guidelines already in place.
- Campaign organisers should be present to deliver specific information at the training. Scenario plans, campaign backgrounds, etc. Be clear and direct around how much time should be dedicated to this task.
- Identify in advance what handouts are needed, and use evidence based resource material to support your training and delivery. make good use of all available assets and materials.
- Make your training as interactive as possible. People are more likely to rememeber an action rather than a talking to. Where relevant make it fun.
- Be clear as to who is bringing what to the training and make sure all who are involved are aware of their roles and responsibilites.
- Make sure your venue is adequate for your needs. Is there enough room to carry out your training effectively and efficiently. Enough room for for role play, excercises and any other relevant activities that you may be looking to incorporate into your session.
CHECKLIST FOR FACILITATING TRAINING.
- Facilitators should be aware that it may take longer to prepare than to deliver. It is important that co-facilitators work together to build the agenda and are clear who is responsible for what and how they will work together.
- Be realistic about the ammount of time alloted for each section of the training. Don’t rush the training and make sure there is enough time to deliver and for those you are trianing to digest.
- Start with introductions and icebreakers, introductory excercises. If teh group members know each other well it might be an idea to ask a question that may help each member of the group to learn sonething new about each other.
- If you require more information about peoples experiences use a non-competitive way to ask. Set a tone, explaining that the trainers need the information but that it is not an excercise to see who is ‘better’ within the group.
- Early on in the training, set excercises that encourage group interaction and full participation.
- Always maintain a balance between individual, pair and full group participation.
- Find a comfortable balance between moving excercises and discussion. Ensuring regular breaks at regular intervals.
- It is sometimes a positive move to mark specific items in your training package that can be removed should you run into overtime due to an unforeseen circumstance.
- Always leave time for group evaluation and use different forms of evaluation. This could be done by writing on a wall chart, what went well? and gathering feedback from the floor. It could be accomplished by a series of questions designed to solicit comments, it could be brainstorming excercise. Written evaluation forms are handy if the training was a long session.
- If you are regularily delivering to the group, explain the next session anf training package and always be willing to adapt to the needs of the floor within reason to tweek up your training backage.