Facilitator Training FAQ

  1. Read over the Volunteer Agreements, which express OCTEVAW's values and expectations for MANifest Change volunteers. If your values are aligned with ours, continue on!
  2. Submit the Volunteer Application Form, which includes two references.
  3. A staff member contacts you to set up an informal interview, usually by phone, lasting about half an hour. This is your chance to ask questions about the project, and our chance to get to know you a little better.
  4. Attend all training sessions.
  5. Bring an original Police Record Check for the vulnerable sector to the final training session. It must be no more than two months old, i.e. it must cover outstanding charges and criminal convictions.
  6. After completing the training, you check-in with a staff member. Are there any concerns from either party? We want to make sure that everyone feels comfortable in their role. With these questions settled, you are invited to become an official Male Champion/facilitator.
  7. Begin co-facilitating workshops in the community. You are supported by OCTEVAW staff and experienced facilitators.

Our idea of a Male Champion is a male-identified person who has the ability to connect with young men as a positive role model. By connect, we mean you listen respectfully to younger people, have clear personal boundaries (you share enough to be a real person, but don't over-share), and can hold a conversation on sensitive topics. You share OCTEVAW's understanding of how people of all genders can heal from violence together, and will be asked to sign OCTEVAW's Volunteer Agreements upon completing the training. We're looking for men who share a positive vision of a world in which we can all live our lives free of violence.

You are available to attend all training sessions. You commit to co-facilitating workshops in the community as opportunities arise and your schedule allows. We recognize that volunteers have busy schedules and we expect that some people will be available occasionally, while others wish to commit more time and energy. Daytime availability is valuable, though we also get calls for after-school programs and evening events. Workshops are generally booked at least 2-3 weeks in advance, allowing you to schedule ahead. You can always decline when invited to facilitate a workshop if your schedule doesn't allow for it.

If you cannot attend one of the sessions, contact the MANifest Change Coordinator as early as possible to discuss how you might gain the necessary experience.

Ensure that you get a Police Record Check for the Vulnerable Sector - this is a requirement for both OCTEVAW and the school boards we work in. We require a Police Record Check that is no older than two months. The original will be returned to you once we have verified it. You can get a Police Record Check in person at 2670 Queensview Dr., however, we recommend you try the online system first to avoid long line-ups.

OCTEVAW's Human Resources Policy states: "Should a criminal reference check reveal a record for which a pardon has not been granted, the Hiring Committee will review the nature of the offence and will render a recommendation on the employability of the candidate or the prospects of volunteering. A positive reference check should not necessarily preclude employment or volunteering. The nature of and circumstances surrounding the charges and convictions shall be considered."

You will experience the workshop as a participant; discuss the issues explored by the workshop (continuum of violence, consent, masculinity); and, practice some of the skills necessary for facilitating a workshop and addressing VAW and GBV in daily life. The training is a chance to learn from each other, taking the issues seriously and ourselves not so seriously! We invite women and LGBTQ+ experts to join us at certain times in order to expand our understanding of GBV from these essential perspectives.

Whenever possible, we facilitate in small teams of 2-3 people. This allows us to learn from each other as we go, and brings more than one perspective to the workshop. Creating a safe space for guys to talk about gender and violence can be challenging, and it's better when we do it together. Often, an OCTEVAW staff member will be available to co-facilitate or support from the sidelines. Every workshop ends with a facilitator huddle to reflect on how things went down and what we can change for next time.

The training is free.

Current wait times for Criminal Records Checks in Ottawa are 8-10 weeks so you must pay for same-day service ($53). If this is a financial barrier for you, let us know. Once you are delivering workshops, it is your responsibility to get to the workshop locations (e.g. bus fare, gas for your car, new soles for your shoes :)