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Transformative Mediation

The Transformative Mediation programme is being introduced to enhance effective mediation wi thin communi t ies, reaching out to church and community leaders as possible. Introducing the Transformative Mediation programme in Kenya is timely given that there are many underlying conflicts in the communities, and yet no meaningful success is being realized through other kinds of interventions.

To start off, FCPT gathered members of their Counseling and Coordinating Committee from different yearly meetings to equip them with Transformative Mediation skills with the purpose of reaching out to their respective yearly meetings. This year we have done three more in Malava Yearly Meeting, Turbo, and Mt. Elgon because of the great demand in those areas. In total FCPT presented six basic and two refresher courses.

The objectives of a Transformative Mediation workshop are to help participants to:

• understand transformative contact theory,
• be familiar with the concept of empowerment and recognition,
• understand the purpose of third-party intervention in the transformative framework,
• understand the practices a mediator employs to support party empowerment and inter-party recognition, and
• be able to engage in the basic practices of transformative mediation.

Participants included Friends pastors, evangelists, presiding clerks, general secretaries and yearly meeting members. The participants were all literate and informed people, with varying levels of understanding. The gender representation was fair.

The facilitators employed the participatory methods all through: brainstorming, discussion in pairs and small groups, questions and answers, role plays, sharing in a go-round, flip charts and handouts. To enhance active participation there were breaks and in between sessions we had some energizers, ice breakers, light and lively moments.

Before the end of the workshop each participant had time to practice the skills they learned through role plays during the last day. Each role play was debriefed, which was also a learning moment. Each participant pledged to start using the skills back at home.

— From FUM’s FCPT newsletter, Spring 2012