The Symposium Reaches Africa, Facilitator Trainings Expand Globally

December 15, 2008 | By The Pachamama Alliance

The Pachamama Alliance’s Awakening the Dreamer Initiative has been active in the last months of 2008 with Facilitators offering Symposiums around the world, including Africa, and more than 330 new Symposium Facilitators trained in the last 3 months.

Ghana symposium
At the end of November, the symposium was delivered for the first time in Ghana, Africa.  A remarkable young Ghanese man, Yakubu Mohammed Awal, was inspired to use the symposium to help educate people in the forested northern parts of the country about the danger of continuing the deforestation there.  Awal has been observing this firsthand as part of his Agricultural Studies at the university. He then encountered the Symposium in an on-line conversation with a Symposium Facilitator in the UK and at his request, we sent him the recently developed Presenters Kit designed for people who can not get to a full facilitator training.  Armed with the Symposium, Awal then rented a generator, DVD player and chartered taxi to take he and his companions on a many hour journey to the community he has been studying.  The entire village turned out for the Symposium, and after a lively discussion, the chief pledged his commitment to end chainsaw operations in the area.  Awal funded this work from his own savings and is looking for an ongoing way to bring the message of the Symposium to another 100 or so communities in the same region. If you have ideas or know of partners in Ghana or west Africa that can ally with Awal, please email Jon Symes.

Boulder, Colorado Facilitator Training
A dynamic group of 44 diverse individuals from Colorado, Maine, California , New Mexico, Virginia, and Wyoming gathered together for a comprehensive Facilitator training and development experience from December 3 through 7th, 2008 in Boulder, Colorado, led by trainers Jon Love, Noelle Poncelet and Anita Sanchez.  They quickly discovered a unique alchemy of skills and personalities and became connected as members of our Awakening the Dreamer (ATD) community, using the group name Born4Now. After this profoundly engaging experience, the 44 people are more than ready to facilitate Symposiums. By the completion of the training, they had approximately 40 Symposiums either already scheduled or in the works; from intimate house gatherings, to professional organizations, to large corporations, and in areas as diverse as Washington DC, Boulder, CO, Columbia and Sudan.

Charlotte, North Carolina Facilitator Training
The Charlotte ATD core team was pleased to co-create and host a 1-day Facilitator Training for the Awakening the Dreamer Symposium on Dec. 6th, 2008 in Charlotte, North Carolina, with the partnership and inspired leadership of Tracy Apple, key architect of the symposium, and Chuck Putnam, the Philadelphia-based East Coast Coordinator.  Thirty-two participants, composed of leaders in their fields of ecological sustainability, peace promotion and community organization, as well as eager young people in their 20’s, came together to explore, celebrate, and learn how to take the initiative's purpose of "bringing ecological sustainability, social justice, and spiritual fulfillment to the human presence of this planet as the guiding principle of our time" out into the public domain.  Core groups emerged from several surrounding cities, which fulfills the Charlotte group's goal of spreading this critical message throughout the Southeast, the US, and, ultimately, our beautiful blue planet!