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Is it a Club?

In 2008, I joined the ORNCC Board to participate in the planning of the “Leading a Non-Violent Life” 3-day conference at the University of Oregon. It featured Marshall Rosenberg, Rev C.T.Vivian, close colleague of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr, and Julia Butterfly Hill. My role during the conference was to assist Julia Butterfly Hill, a pleasure and a privilege. Mostly I made sure she had plenty of best quality drinking water in her glass jar.

I left the Board about a year later and returned in 2012. I’ve been the secretary for the last 5 years. Questions about meeting minutes? Check with me. My purpose in joining was simple. I want to encourage the learning and practice of NVC in Oregon.

We, the ORNCC Board, are a group of 5 people, 2 men and 3 women from Salem, Bend, Eugene and Ashland. Two are Certified Trainers, 3 are not. We meet once a month by videoconference, usually the last Friday morning of the month, for about an hour and a quarter. Once a year, we have an in-person meeting for 4 hours.

To my surprise, I don’t moan and groan to my friends “I have an ORNCC meeting tomorrow.” This is unusual because in general, I dislike meetings. I resent having to listen to someone drone on and on about their pet peeve or pet project, I don’t like others’ petty conflicts (somehow mine aren’t “petty.”) Most importantly, I really don’t like entertaining a judgment about how “that was a waste of my time!”

This leaves me with the surprising realization that I enjoy the ORNCC meetings. In fact, the common check-out includes comments like “I appreciate how much we accomplished in so little time.” “I enjoyed our collaboration.” “I liked how safe I felt.” “I love our efficiency.”

As with most Boards, raising funds for the organization is usually on the agenda and usually not the topic we anticipate with joy and excitement. Last year, we decided to offer trainings as a way to raise funds. Why not? We donated our time and energy doing what we most love to do. Having spent too many hours sorting through funky old clothes in advance of a yard sale, or begging people to buy the very healthy, dense gluten free muffins or the cookies topped with M&M’s to raise funds for a cause, I found it to be a brilliant strategy.

Offering workshops together gave us an opportunity to get to know each other as teaching colleagues, as supporters and organizers and as fundraisers too.

We’ll be offering more workshops, watch for them.

Because it’s such an enjoyable and easy experience, I don’t think of the ORNCC Board as a stuffy “Board of Directors,” and it’s not really a work group –too much fun- so I wonder how to describe this group of people who care about encouraging trainers and practitioners of NVC in Oregon and Southwestern Washington.

Privately, I think it’s more of a club that I’m part of. A fun NVC club.

You can join too.

s h a r e