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Training of Conflict Transformation Trainers

from Dan Buttry


August 20, 2015

Training of Conflict Transformation Trainers

In June 2015, BPFNA ~ Bautistas por la Paz sponsored a 10-day Training of Conflict Transformation Trainers at the International Hope Center in Hamtramck, MI. The training was led by Dan Buttry and focused on conflict analysis, conflict resolution, personal conflict styles, diversity in conflict, power issues, and more. Below are "Trip Notes" from Dan Buttry about the training.

You've heard a lot about the 10-day Training of Conflict Transformation Trainers programs that I've been doing. The most recent one was in Kiev, Ukraine this past May bringing people from 9 countries: Kyrgyzstan, Azerbaijan, Israel, Lebanon, Zimbabwe, Italy, Georgia, Ukraine, and the U.S. This is the first year I've done two of these demanding events, the second here in Detroit where I live. But it has turned out to be international as well.

We had 12 participants for the core training. Besides those from the U.S. we have participants from Syria, Sri Lanka, and Holland as well as a Chin leader from Burma/Myanmar who currently lives in Seattle and will return later this year to do peacemaking work back in his homeland.

"I just came back from my two week intensive training of TCTT in Detroit. It was a remarkable experience for me, and thank you very much for kindly offering me the necessary scholarship for this training. Dan and his colleague, Murphy, are phenomenal trainers. I learned a lot from them. I look forward to using all the materials they shared with us when I go back to Burma. Again, I just want to say thank you very much for your support."  -Hrang Hlei

I was also delighted to have my International Ministries (IM) missionary colleague Ray Schellinger in the training -- just last September Sharon and I were with Ray and his wife Adalia doing workshops at Deborah's House (a refuge for victims of domestic violence in Tijuana, Mexico) and with the pastors in Tijuana. Ray hopes to incorporate much of what he gathered from this training in his future ministry dealing with issues of domestic violence.

My co-facilitator was Murphy, a member of my MissionPartnership Team. Murphy attended the 10-day training Sharon and I facilitated in Kenya back in 2013. She has done a lot of training, counseling, and peace work in Roscommon, Michigan where Markey Community Baptist Church has been a strong supporter of my peacemaking mission. God used her in a powerful way not just in the training but with many participants as they worked through their own personal journeys in relation to the content in the training. We made a great team with complimentary gifts.

Jude is a Tamil from Sri Lanka. The Tamils had an insurgent group, the Tamil Tigers, that were often called "terrorists" as they led a struggle for independence from the dominant Sinhalese majority. In the conflict the Tamils experienced brutality that many call genocidal. Jude lived through all that and has recently come to the U.S. to study. He plans to go back to deal with the short-circuited reconciliation process -- the peace agreement was merely an end to the fighting but hasn't addressed the deep issues behind the conflict. He was trilled to be in the training gaining the kinds of experiential tools that he wasn't getting in his other studies.

We had participants from BPFNA ~ Bautistas por la Paz and local community activists. We also had a woman heading to Egypt to do conflict transformation training with a leadership development organization. She was ecstatic about the content and tools she could immediately put to good use.

In the middle of the training we did a workshop with Training for Change based in Philadelphia called Training of Social Action Trainers (TSAT). The TSAT focuses on the methods, tools, and design of experiential learning workshops. Our core group was joined by 11 other activists including people from environmental groups, Black Lives Matter organizations, and urban education activists.   

The training was intense -- just as we advertise! I'm recovering, taking naps between doing the financial follow-up and working in the garden. But what a rich time.

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