Developing Participant Leadership

Because the goal of a Resilience Circle is that the participants will jointly sustain the group after the initial seven sessions, it is very important to develop leadership as you go through the curriculum. Here are some suggestions for how to do this:

  • Ask volunteers to take on logistical responsibilities. For example, you might ask someone to be in charge of sending reminder emails, another to send links to the homework, and another to be the “food czar” in charge of potlucks or snacks.
  • Designate a “Keeper of the Ideas List,” as described in the sidebar.
  • Ask participants if they would like to facilitate portions of the sessions. Try to ensure that in every session, someone other than you (or your co-facilitator) facilitates at least one section.
  • Invite participants to bring and read the closing readings.
  • Invite someone other than you (or your co-facilitator) to facilitate the Evaluation at the end of each session.
  • And of course, be on the lookout for participants who have interests and skills which would make them good project leaders or facilitators. Encourage these folks to take on leadership in one-on-one conversations.

Identifying “Transitional Leaders”

As your group nears the end of the curriculum, you will be encouraged to identify “transitional leaders.” These folks will be in charge of organizing the group’s next steps, such as scheduling discussions or activities. The original facilitators and organizers should consider themselves “consultants” to these new leaders. Be present to help and guide, but try to let some new folks take the reins.

Next: User’s Guide