Creating Art of Hosting trainings always involve working with teams of people. Usually there are anywhere from three – ten people that join with a couple of AoH Stewards. Some of those people joining are co-designers, active practitioners. Some are supporters, helping with logistics. Some are apprentices, deepening into the practice of holding the whole (true for all of us at one level or another). Some are sponsors.
People often ask about what kind of sponsorship is possible. With that in mind, Teresa Posakony at The Berkana Institute offered the following clarity. These are good to name up front.
- 1.Sharing the invitation in their network. This is the most simple level of sponsoring. Some who share will be people who hear about the event and are excited. However, even better, some of these are people who join in a call or two with the team to contribute there sense of key questions and issues. Thus, there is a minimum of co-creating a broad framework together. It puts a lot more energy behind the sharing of invitation.
- 2.Bringing people to the event. Including themselves. This involves commitment to bring paying participants and teams to the learning that will occur. Sometimes it is a couple of people. Typically it is four or more. As before, when these sponsors participate in a call or two, they are adding wisdom into the design group with a particularly keen sense of who will be coming to the training. With sponsors like this, it also helps speed the process of preparation, the time between exploring the possibility of a training and actually hosting it, by knowing that registration will be full.
- 3.Offering scholarship support. This has been offered in three ways. First, underwriting the overall costs so that tuition can be reduce for everyone and make it more accessible to many. These are important to know up front and influence pricing information that is included in an invitation. Or second, payment for specific individuals to be in the room. This pays for those people while the cost to other participants remains at a regular price. Or third, payment for specific types of people to be in the room. People from a particular kind of community agency that don’t have the needed resources. Or youth. Or elders. Or parents. The important point is having enough of a system in the room to be able to see each other as a system, hear the voices, and act as a system.