Posted by: Mike Grenville | 31 December 2008

Transforming Conflict Training

Transforming conflict:
A training day for people in the Transition movement

Saturday January 24th 2009
9.30 – 5.00
hosted by Transition Bristol

When you (or others) are in conflict how well do you cope?

Would you like to deal with conflict more constructively and creatively? Does it sometimes seem to be very hard to be true to / stand up for yourself and your values and avoid getting into conflict?

A group can have high aspirations, and yet suffer from internal dynamics that hold it back. We know we need diversity and inclusion, but we can still fall into issues of power and helplessness. Conflicts may float around unresolved in the background and continue to affect the life of the group, and are sometimes only resolved by withdrawal or exclusion. Unresolved conflicts can bring overwhelm and burn-out.

How did this training come about?

At the recent Transition Cities conference in Nottingham, there was a short workshop on Working with Conflict. It was facilitated by Iona Fredenburgh and introduced theory and practice from “Process Work”. There was a lot of interest from participants in having a longer training, so here is the first one, hosted by Transition Bristol.

“Process Work” has been used all over the world to work creatively with conflict and group dynamics, as well as many other applications. (see below for info links) It welcomes all voices, perspectives and experiences as valuable, and offers skills for facilitating the way they all interact.

Who is it for?

This training aims to be relevant and useful for anyone who wants to add to their relationship and group skills, whether in the Transition movement, Sustainable society work or in everyday life. We will focus especially on skills for leadership and participation in groups. We welcome your interest, and want to share our excitement about creating effective collaboration between those who want to make a difference in our society.

What will we do?

There will be some theory and lots of practice. Some of this will be in pairs and small groups, and some as a whole group together. We will share the ‘metaskills’ of respect, curiosity and compassion that make it easier to explore challenging areas.

  • We will share skills for leadership, facilitation and participation in groups. How to work with conflicts that arise internally, in relationship and in groups, organisation and teams. This will include noticing early signs of conflict, talking about it, and practices for working together creatively to find out more about it and learn from it.
  • We will look at how ‘rank’ differences affect the way we relate to each other, how to notice this and use our rank skilfully. This helps reduce power dynamics in groups. We will show how roles emerge in a group and can interact creatively in group process.
  • We will explore some of the specific roles and issues that emerge within Transition, and what we can learn from them to strengthen our resilience and sustainability.
  • Importantly, we will find out how these skills make our practical activities more effective.
  • There will be an opportunity for lots of interaction and feedback, and for people to bring other questions.

Venue and cost

The workshop will be held at Rookery Farm, Shellards Lane, Alveston, Bristol BS35 3SY
Directions and travel info will be sent out to participants, including lift share info.

Cost is £50 (if the cost is an issue, do contact us).
Please send a deposit of £20 by 12th January to Paul Baker at Rookery Farm,
cheques made out to Transition Bristol.

If you have any queries please contact Paul on

Please bring lunch for yourself or to share.

The Facilitators

Iona Fredenburgh Dipl PW.
I am a Process Work Therapist and Facilitator based in Stroud, where I’ve been involved for several years with Ruskin Mill’s work with land, sustainability, therapeutic education and teenagers with special needs. I’ve worked for over 30 years as a group facilitator in various contexts, including team and leadership development, open forum facilitation in organisational settings, ecopsychology and shamanism. I am a Faculty Member of RSPOPUK, the Process Work Organisation in the UK.

Mark O’Connell Dipl PW, Dipl FT.
I am a Process Work Therapist and Facilitator, and a founding member of RSPOPUK, with a private practice in Ipswich. I specialise in working with organisation caring for children, and with young people with Learning Difficulties and EBD. I live on an organic fruit farm from where I co-run The Apricot Centre, an eco-venue for training workshops related to sustainable living I have worked for many years in the field of environmentalism and ecopsychology, having designed and co-run the HNC for Sustainable Environments – The Ecology of People and the Land.

More info about Process Work (PW):

Process Work in the UK:
Arny Mindell, founder of PW:

Examples of PW around the world: and



  1. Distance and time prevent me attending but I’dlike to receive any report that’s produced. With good wishes,Hilda Meers

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