Re: Hiring outside facilitators/professionals
From: Elizabeth Magill (
Date: Thu, 15 Oct 2020 12:21:26 -0700 (PDT)
We have had one issue where we needed to do this, and in the end we just
didn't. We couldn't get enough buy-in from the parties engaged to agree to
a facilitator/mediator.

We have had less contentious issues that happened to coincide to when we
were having general process workshops, and we have used those as examples.
Thus we worked with an outside facilitator but their purpose was more about
overall process education.

Our most contentious community decisions were solved by stopping discussion
and waiting a few months and then restarting by trying to be clear about
what the issues are. We then have had one or two people go and meet with
the most vehement voices to give them space to share. Often, someone
manages to trace the outlines of an agreement between the strongest of the
extreme edges of our views.
Other times we just never come to agreement.

I also suggest being careful to determine if it really is a "community
conflict" or if it is actually lots of interpersonal conflicts that some
are pushing for the "the community" (as in, "not me") to solve.

Liz Magill
Mosaic Commons Cohousing, Berlin, MA

On Thu, Oct 15, 2020 at 2:45 PM Therese Kunzi-Clark <studiotkc [at]>

> I would like to get some information on how other Cohousing Communities
> deal with difficult issues or conflicts that need to be discussed with the
> whole community.
> 1. Do you deal with it internally or do you hire an outside
> facilitator/professional.
> 2.How often and for what kind of issues or help do you hire outside
> facilitators?
>  3. If you deal with it internally, can you recommend "best practices"
> Thank you for your input.
> Therese Kunzi-Clark
> Winslow Cohousing
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(The Rev. Dr.) Elizabeth Mae Magill
Pastor, Ashburnham Community Church
Minister to the Affiliates, Ecclesia Ministries

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