Workshops in Bristol

As I am now semi-retired I no longer offer workshops run under my own auspices. However, I am happy to consider invitations to provide training run by other groups or organisations. Below you can see descriptions of the various workshops I currently have on offer, however I can design workshops to meet particular needs within my areas of expertise:

Using stories of experience for research and learning

Practitioners are increasingly being encouraged to research their practice: usually this is undertaken at a university as part of a further degree. However, it is possible to learn about how to undertake useful, in-depth, practitioner-research outside of that context with support from a research supervisor.

I offer a day for research students in academic setting who wish to complement their studies, and practitioners (from a range of different settings) who value the use of 'stories of experience' (their own or their clients') as a basis for knowledge creation. Many practitioners are frustrated with traditional methods of research that do not capture the richness and complexity of their practice, so this workshop will focus on 'showing' people how they might do research differently.

The impact of working with trauma and abuse.
If we do not pay enough attention to our own needs whist working with trauma and abuse survivors, we can suffer what has been referred to as 'burnout', 'compassion fatigue' or 'vicarious traumatisation' which can lead to despair and cynicism, and sometimes withdrawal from the field. This workshop explores how to recognize burnout in ourselves and our colleagues, and ways in which we can keep ourselves safe and healthy.

The day will consist of a presentation with discussion, experiential exercises and small group work. It will be suitable for anyone working in the field of trauma/abuse, including counsellors, therapists, NHS staff, as well as those working in education, social work and probation amongst others.

Writing as a Reflective Practice: A creative adventure.
Reflective practice is a dynamic developmental process that enables us to gain a deeper understanding of our work and to grasp 'authority over actions, thoughts, feelings, beliefs, values and professional identity' and the cultural, political and ethical contexts in which we work (Bolton 2005).

By using writing (and group discussion) as a means by which to reflect upon our practices we can move out of our narrow range of experiences and view them from a variety of positions, creating stories, poems, letters, metaphors, or any other form of writing practice that might emerge.

The workshop creates a safe space in which we can experiment with different forms of writing to explore practices and relationships with clients, supervisees, trainees, etc or to create opportunities for playful inquiry and/or receive support.

This will be an experiential day, with some guided opportunities to try out a variety of different writing approaches to reflecting on practice.