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Tips for Trainers: Quoting the issues; Ground rules; Photographs; Fishbowl (PLA 50)

Tips for trainers

Alice Welbourn shares her experiences of a workshop method called Quoting the issues’. It uses a series of quotes from people who have found themselves in disempowering situations to help open up debate among workshop participants about participatory approaches and issues of power and empowerment.

An extract from Reflect’s Communication and Power manual describes how photographs can be used to tell a story or to make people think about issues. What is going on in the picture? What does the picture not tell us? And how can we use photographs as a powerful visual form of advocacy?

Andrea Cornwall and Gill Gordon present their ideas for workshop ground rules, which can be agreed with participants at the start of a workshop to help create safer and more inclusive spaces for people to engage in.

Next, Gill Gordon writes about her experiences of using the fishbowl method. The fishbowl can be used to facilitate groups of both men and women to open up and share their thoughts and experiences, for example about sexuality and sexual health, in a safe environment.

Vicky Johnson and Robert Nurick explain how ranking lines can help people to explore issues such as wealth and health. Participants use the line to rank, for example, how rich or how poor, or how good or bad their diet is. They then can discuss strategies to improve these – or, how to move themselves ‘up the line’.

Participatory Learning and Action (PLA, formerly PLA Notes) is the world's leading series on participatory learning and action approaches and methods. PLA publishes articles on participation aimed at practitioners, researchers, academics and activists. All articles are peer-reviewed by an international editorial board. See: www.planotes.org

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Publication information

  • IIED code: G02112
  • Published: Oct 2004 - IED
  • Theme: Participation
  • Source pub: Participatory Learning and Action 50: Critical reflections, future directions
  • Language: English

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