5-day Enspiral workshop - through the eyes of a participant

"One week ago, we came to the end of our 5-day Enspiral themed programme at YIP, but the fun didn't stop there. It's a really unique pleasure to be staying longer term at a community as a resident facilitator/mentor, as I am also being given the chance to hear feedback and grow/develop during the weeks here.

It's rare that you get to hear from workshop participants in detail about what worked for them, what didn't, and what they'd like more of next time. In the situation I am in, I also get to continue the work and continue offering sessions to draw out the impact and allow participants to keep practising skills and using tools they have picked up during our week.

Below is a short article written by Robbie Solway, one of the YIP participants, about his experience of the week. He in particular really took on a lot of the skills and tools we offered, and is now working on a fantastic project to build a network of solidarity projects in Toronto and its surrounding area... As well as taking an active role in building the online YIP Alumni network.

Thank you Robbie!


"What is Enspiral? This question [en]spiralled chaotically around our course last week... alongside our freely moving understandings of social enterprise, money management, network, project incubation and community culture. Regardless of the answer, we learned a lot from the Enspiral course contributors, Silvia Zuur and Phoebe Tickell, about working with each of these themes.

For the week, we each 'dated' one of our projects. These initiatives became the case studies on which we applied Enspiral-y practices, as well as the lenses with which we listened to Silvia’s stories of entrepreneurship. We envisioned our initiatives as social enterprises through the Social Lean Canvas, exchanged our rapid-fire pitches and created financial roadmaps. I noticed my plans becoming increasingly grounded: specific & realistic ideas formed for a series of events to bring together the people, families and communities of Toronto.

What makes Enspiral truly unique, it seems, lies in the eye of the beholder. From my perspective, one particularly unique quality is their jargon: the Enspiral community applies software development terminology like ‘refactor’ and ‘fork’ to projects way beyond their computer screens. I haven’t been quite sure how to fit my computer science background and my YIP experience together thus far, but last week I felt at home when Silvia started sharing her challenges with “merging into the master branch.”

Many of us took the opportunity to learn from the Enspiral network for reflecting on what the YIP network can also mean. In smaller discussions, we shared excitement around the August gathering, the alumni map, and the possibilities of how as YIP10 we want to enter the space of being YIP alumni. In the Brosbe check-in group, we’re experiencing a taste of what it means to open the relationships we’ve formed over 10 months to the wider community. Our name amalgamates those of Rose, Bruna, and Pheobe - the amazing people who have stepped into the rotating role of the Brosbe OT throughout the year.

We've been with each of them in spaces of deep sharing as well as learning from their work. Rose invited us into the world of Moral Technologies, Bruna brought her care for education & nature with the Amazon Summer School, and now Phoebe has opened us up to the world of collaborative networking through Enspiral. Phoebe’s role as both Enspiral Member and YIP OT invites possibility for how we can all connect even better together. Having Phoebe around as a friend, mentor and visionary brings a lot of excitement to our remaining time in Sweden."