New beginnings, first impressions and reflections on the facilitation course by Laurie Atterbury

It can be difficult to start a new position. New people, new places and the constant desire to make a ‘good impression’. Not to mention this is my first foray into the charity sector. I have a degree in history and for the last two years have been a production assistant at a bespoke printing company, so I hope to bring a great deal of different experience and skills to this position, but my first week has involved getting to grips with a whole different business model. Luckily for me, the kind people at SEEd have made such a transition easy. After only two days bedding in at the office with Victoria, I was whisked off to Oxford for a firsthand glimpse at a famed SEEd Facilitation Course. SEEd runs only a couple of these courses a year and I was informed others had been waiting months for the opportunity, so this turned out to be fantastic timing on my part. I hadn’t been sure what to expect from SEEd, they’re a Sustainable Education charity renowned for their work with educators and the education system but I was still intrigued as to how this worked at a grass roots level. Having spent time volunteering in Nicaragua I have seen the need for sustainability in communities and I’ve returned to the UK with a desire to understand the processes of affecting change at a cultural and political level. To this end, the Facilitation Course was a fascinating start to my SEEd career.

Set in the heart of Oxfordshire at the Earth Trust, a fantastic organisation with huge amounts of community involvement, it was the perfect environment to learn more about minimising our own ecological impact and how to teach others to do the same. Over the course of two days we learnt about best practice and different methods for group education on a variety of sustainable issues and I left with a much clearer idea of the ethos and direction of the charity and how I could help within that.

I’ve enjoyed my first weeks at SEEd and would encourage anyone interested to take part in the course. This charity is set up around creating awareness of the way our lives impact others and I don’t think the importance of that can be understated. I know that I’m learning new information and skills every day working here and I hope to gain even more. A sincere thanks to Ann and Victoria for giving me this opportunity, hopefully this will be the first blog post of many.

Laurie Atterbury

SEEd Intern