what participants say about the Masterclass

MasterclassAbouticon.png“The Masterclass has given me a fundamental change in headspace about my work in the community.”

“I definitely feel more empowered. I don’t feel so persecuted by different agendas, and instead I am asking, What’s got my name on it?, and thinking, I can make a difference here.”

“It was great to be exposed to different parts of the community that I'm not usually exposed to.”

“I felt very inspired, brave, incredibly powerful, and have left the Masterclass with a clear direction.”

“The Masterclass has influenced the way I engage with families in my work.”

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“It has given me the courage to do something I have wanted to do for years …”

“The resources are great. They should be essential reading for anyone who is leading in our community.”


“I will now approach my group work much slower. I won't rush in and fix the problem, instead I will try to think outside the square and use a more inclusive approach.”

“The diversity of the group is a real asset. I valued the opportunity to hear other people's stories that I don’t hear in my normal community connections.”

MC3.png“The appointments are a ‘genius’ part of the design. I want to keep that going now that the Masterclasses are finished.”

“The Masterclass really made me stop and re-analyse all my work, particularly the place of social services versus real community engagement.”

“A central message of the Masterclass is around the commitment you make to your peers, rather than just to the leaders of a community. That's something we have really taken on board here, and that's been a great shift.”

MC4.png“The ‘Above and below the line’ tool has become a special favourite for me, and I use that in my work with whanau.”

“The Masterclass is in giving people a shared language to talk about community approaches to development. And if we don't use this language, we will lose it.”

“It has made a great difference in all my conversations. I now ask harder questions, and push harder for community-based perspectives.”

“There is tremendous knowledge held within the group and people were extremely generous in sharing their wisdom.”

MC5.png“It gave me permission to step outside my own community ‘bubble’.”

“The non-rigid process really worked for me and I liked having lots of opportunities to talk in smaller groups.”

“I am more aware of the nature of conversations now, and more conscious about my efforts to steer them away from trivial matters towards something more meaningful.”

“The material from Peter Block and John McKnight has opened up for me a fundamental rethinking of the place of services in the community – compared to a deeper focus on citizen, family and community development.”

MC6.png“It's put a fire in my belly and reminded me of how I could be again.”

“I enjoyed the bi-cultural aspect of the workshops, and felt that the Maori leadership was particularly inviting, generous and respectful in opening up windows to Te Ao Maori for the non-Maori in the group.”

“I wondered if I would be out of my depth, and I definitely expected that I would be well out of my comfort zone. But this feeling of anxiety passed after the first meeting.”

“The facilitation was really good, focused and helped participants become comfortable with the material and opened up the space for reflection.”

MC7.png“The Masterclass has re-awakened a desire to do something more in the community ... reminding me of how I felt about things when I was younger and perhaps being more ready to challenge things.”

“Some light bulbs have come on about revisiting the bigger picture again, and raising my head above the daily grind of parenting and other study.”

“I was stunned by the amount of material on the plug-in drive, and I have been cherry-picking it for inspiration.”

“I feel I am now more able to sit back and look for possibilities in some rather negative situations, also make more of an effort to think differently when conflict occurs.”

“The small group discussions were the key to the Masterclass process, as there was a lot of space which gave room for everyone.”

MC8.png“I felt challenged about just how well I include diverse opinions and ways of working in my projects, and how to draw other people into a real community process.”

“A brilliant and important initiative that brings together different strands of the community, I was fortunate to take part in and would highly recommend participating.”

“It was well balanced with different delivery styles and different people involved in leading the thinking. The structure of Masterclass meant that everyone had the ownership of participation, and after the keynote speeches there was sense of achievement.”

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“The Masterclass has been an opener for my own voice. I've realised that no matter how old you are you can still be introduced into new things.”

“The facilitation was really well prepared and I could feel the love and compassion for everyone. It spoke of small beginnings, but with a wider view and scope.”

“I have applied the Masterclass knowledge to my work environment and integrated it into team meetings where everyone speaks and is listened to. I have also taken the time to welcome new families to our street, and welcome them to our community.”

“The Masterclass has made me ‘feel more like myself’ than I have for a long time.”