4 12 2009

Facilitation skills:  The key to successful training

At a recent facilitation training workshop organized by AWARD in Nyeri, Kenya, 20 AWARD Mentors, staff and trainee trainers enhanced their facilitation skills.  As part of its capacity-building mandate, AWARD is currently running a training of trainers (TOT) program.  The current AWARD trainers share their skills with trainee trainers drawn from across the continent.   

The workshop was led by facilitation experts, Community at Work.  Much as most participants had facilitation experience, they still took home valuable lessons.  This was a practical course that had all participants engaged.  They learned how to deal with group dynamics and incorporate all participants in the session.   The skills gained at the workshop, such as active listening, are useful in day-to-day communication, such as meetings and workshops. 

Margaret Kroma, Dorothy Mukhebi and Pauline Bomett are already sharing the skills gained at the workshop with other staff members.  During a recent AWARD retreat, staff shared skills such as chart writing and giving feedback.  

AWARD is explicitly designed to empower African women in agricultural research and development to serve as champions of rural women and to increase their visibility. Through its specially tailored leadership training courses, AWARD Fellows learn to navigate organizational gender issues, leverage team talents, manage conflict and use influence appropriately. Fellows also put their leadership skills to practice while serving as role models to inspire girls and younger women to take up a career in agricultural science.

“You have made a significant contribution to my life, career and science.  You have empowered me with group dynamics, leadership and facilitation skills.  I am grateful for all that knowledge that I have acquired.”
Eric Chilembwe, AWARD Mentor, Participant at facilitation skills course             

 Feedback from previous AWARD training sessions

“I am still reeling from the impact of the Women’s Leadership Course. The training was so practical and helpful. I wish there could be a system of passing this knowledge to the young women, aged 25-30 years, as early as possible. They will grow challenged to create impact in their lives without loss of time.
Dora Kilalo, AWARD Fellow, Kenya
“I enjoyed the leadership course and I left Nairobi feeling empowered. The 360 degree survey was revealing. At the final evaluation, I said to myself, ‘It should have happened ten years ago.’  It is never too late! I believe my life has just started.”
Grace Bolfrey-Arku, AWARD Fellow, Ghana



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