Conflict Transformation Spaces
Conflict in communities is inevitable because humans make mistakes, care about different things, and are not always skilled in navigating their differences.
Conflict may be:
the result of a harmful act, the facts of which are not in dispute
associated with a series of unresolved disputes
associated with an issue of shared concern
associated with a history of institutional betrayal and trauma.
When conflict and/or harm occurs, it is very difficult to move forward unless the conflict can be named and transformed.
Restorative practices are a range structured processes through which conflict can be transformed into cooperation (or other appropriate resetting)
The conferencing format enables everyone affected to consider:
who has been affected and how
what is needed to put things right (repair harm; prevent recurrence; reset relationships).
(Australian Association for Restorative Justice)
A team of 15 people was experiencing stress due to the change and workload associated with COVID-19. Relationships were suffering and people were getting sick.
The team came together to refocus on what they were doing well (Appreciative Inquiry), refocus on core priorities, and commit to some simple strategies to improve their mutual support of each other.
The team leader reported in subsequent weeks that the workshop had been ‘transformational’ for the team.