In February 2016, our friends from the group of « Amitoyens » in pays de Gex called us again in order to further extend the Amitoyen’s idea through application of CLCP and SALT with more people as their project is about to scale up. After a brief accompaniment of a small group in 2014, the project successfully grown and moved a few steps ahead with administrative issues - owing to the power of SALT. Their enthusiasm allowed them to identify around 60 more families interested with their project of cooperative housing. They also decided that CLCP/SALT was the way to create  a  common dream and strengthen ownership around the project by all new and old group members.

The preparation of the session was a nice joint collaboration between Constellation coaches and Amitoyens

On the 12th of March the Amitoyens welcomed around 40 people (individuals and families) to participate to the initial steps of getting to know each other and the idea Amitoyens . On the agenda: « who are we ? » and dream development. Participants presented themselves through the choice of pictures. Everyone, also the children, chose a picture that spoke to him. A round of 'why I chose this picture' allowed to get to know each other. "It was really reassuring that the gathering started from who we are as human beings, instead of presenting us with an existing plan" said one of the participants.

A collection of the pictures added in a 'house' on the wall allowed to see and feel how it would be to bring all individuals together under one roof. Loli said: "Look, who is living here together in the house of the Amitoyens. Those are all human beings, with their hopes, concerns, strengths and weaknesses. This is YOU!"

Then the ground was ripe to explore together how we could imagine a ‘chez nous’ (our place) rather than the current ‘chez moi’ et ‘chez toi’ (my place, your place)

 

In 4 small groups all participants explored their common dream. This session was facilitated by 4 Amitoyens members with support from Marlou and Loli. Although the timing did not allow for the development of one common dream, the participants closed their eyes and nodded when Stephanie read aloud the story of Amitoyens in ten years time - that brought flavor, color and feeling to what is possible.

Participants were transformed by these two first steps and at the end of the session, the Amitoyens group registered 14 new memberships.

Another session will take place on the 2nd of April. The new adherents will then join the first circle of Amitoyens in facilitating the session that will bring in again a new set of interested Amitoyens… And so the virus has started to spread!

Then following sessions are planned to continue the process with interested members. The group has entirely adopted SALT and CLCP to create a real ownership of the dream of cooperative housing and strengthen the capacity of the group to face the numerous challenges which are still ahead. 

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Comment by Rituu B. Nanda on March 20, 2016 at 7:59pm

A beautiful example of how not to intervene to tell but to facilitate local response. Please would you share a picture of the 'pictures'!

Congratulations Luc and Loli!

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