Before beginning work with an independent facilitator (see definition), OIFN encourages people, along with their loved ones (family members, friends, support circles, other people you trust), to take some time to learn about the facilitator and decide if you think that the facilitator will be a good fit. To assist you to decide if a facilitator has the experience, values, and qualities that are important to you, OIFN offers the sample questions below. When first meeting with a facilitator, you may consider asking some or all of the questions, in order to learn if the facilitator meets your needs before beginning the relationship and getting started on the work.
In some parts of the province, facilitators work within non-profit Independent Facilitation Organizations (IFOs). If you engage with a facilitator who works for an IFO, your relationship is with not only the facilitator but also the organization. These organizations look after hiring of and/or contracting with facilitators and support facilitators to engage in reflective practice. Oftentimes, Independent Facilitation Organizations will partner with people and families and supportive community allies, such as Family Networks and People First groups, to provide opportunities for mentoring, training, evaluation, and community capacity development.
However, many facilitators are self-employed and are not working within and/or are not connected in any way to an Independent Facilitation Organization. In these instances, it is very important to carefully screen and interview facilitators, in order to choose the right person and to ensure that the facilitator works separate and apart from direct service delivery.
Whether you engage with a self-employed facilitator or with a facilitator connected to an IFO, in most cases, Independent Facilitation is offered on a fee for service basis.
Before thinking about the questions that you might want to ask of an independent facilitator, we suggest that you take some time to reflect on what you and your loved ones are looking for in the person:
- Why are you looking for Independent Facilitation?
- What is most important to you about an independent facilitator’s role?
- What are the key values, traits, and capacities you are looking for in a facilitator?
Questions to Ask…
You may also want to ask for a Criminal Records Vulnerable Sector Check.
We suggest that you speak to people and their loved ones who the independent facilitator has worked with before, to ask them questions about their experiences with Independent Facilitation.
After selecting a facilitator and beginning the work, you may wish to reflect on how the work is proceeding and whether a beneficial relationship with the facilitator has begun.