The people of AVP
Baroness Vivien Stern, CBE, Crossbench Peer House of Lords
Tim Newell, Former Governor of Grendon and Spring Hill prisons, restorative justice practitioner, consultant and author
Jane Harries, chair
Marie Walsh, treasurer
Meet some facilitators
Being involved with AVP has meant so much – it has given me a set of skills which I can practice and use in everyday life. This means that I handle conflict better than I used to. I can express how I feel without getting confrontational and express my needs in an assertive way. It has also improved my listening skills.
AVP workshops give me the chance to pass on these skills.
My first AVP workshop was a turning point for me. I came away knowing that I was OK. The other participants told me so. It was the greatest gift anyone could have given me. As I became a better listener I learned how I needed to change to improve my friendships. As I understood my anger I became better at using the energy to make positive changes. As I understood more about behaviour I could watch what I was doing and appreciate how others were seeing me. I could take control of my life and achieve my goals. I think ahead a lot more now and I like myself much more than when I did my first workshop all those years ago.
I became a facilitator 10 years ago, after hearing about how AVP had turned someone’s life around. My life was comfortable and I didn’t have massive problems, but AVP helped me think about the way I viewed conflict. Issues with my growing children became opportunities for growth and learning - for us all as a family - rather than fear and failure. I found new ways to tackle problems in a constructive way, rather than just getting angry or frustrated and it helped me to express myself more confidently. Most of all, facilitating workshops allows me to enjoy meeting new people who are courageous enough to want to make changes in their lives.
I began my AVP journey in 2013 when I attended a workshop at my University. As a Peace Studies student, I wanted to learn about the ways that I can find solutions to conflicts that allows everyone involved to benefit in some way. I wanted to learn skills and tools to be able to achieve this. What I love the most about AVP is the way that I feel accepted as part of a supportive community, and I’m encouraged to explore ways I can change myself for the better in a very safe environment.