Facilitation is an ongoing relationship to create change.

Facilitation is based in walking with people with developmental disabilities, and their families. It is a working relationship designed to assist people in creating CHANGE that can work for them. Facilitators assist people through developing plans, acting on these plans, and reflecting to learn from experiences that result.

Facilitators are allies of the person with a developmental disability, and their trusted family members. It is a relationship that is designed to support the capacity of people to direct their own lives.

Important parts of this ongoing working relationship of facilitation are:

Listening: Deep listening, with a genuine intent and desire to understand who this person is, and what they truly desire and need, is at the core of the work. Communicating with the person in ways that lets them know that they have been heard and understood.

Building Trust: Developing a relationship with the person that lets the person know and experience that we are “on their side”. It involves deep listening, and communication, but it also involves actions that align with what the person has expressed as important. It involves follow through, doing what we say we will do.

Prioritizing: Since there are so many issues that people need and want to change, the work of facilitation involves helping people to make decisions about what is important to do FIRST, given the vision they have expressed, the needs that are most urgent, and the resources of people, money, and time that are available.

Planning: The work involves planning for ACTION — making decisions about WHAT we will do; WHO will do it; and WHEN it will be done.

Action: The work involves making sure that people FOLLOW THROUGH on plans that have been made. It involves Facilitators following through on what they have said they will do, but it also involves finding out what other people will need to be able to follow through.

Reflection and learning: Facilitators support the learning that can come from experience, making each plan and action build on the capacity of people to be stronger, more powerful, and more capable of directing their lives. Facilitators guide a process of reflection for the person and their trusted circle of support, with the intention of learning that can guide future plans and action.