Saturday, 04 August 2018 09:56

Non Violent Communication as a Tool To Transform Society

Members of Local Inter Religious Committees (LIRCs) in Weligama including religious leaders, Grama Niladharis, police officers, government officials and civil society leaders, were trained on Non Violent Communication (NVC) under NPC’s project, Collective Engagement for Religious Freedom (CERF).

The training provided a conceptual overview of NVC as well as practical skills. NVC is a tool for personal and individual transformation that would ultimately change a society. 

The training was facilitated by two resource persons from the Centre for Communication Training. The theoretical overview was complemented by an analysis of case studies. The workshop format combined role playing, flow dances, presentations, group work and reflections. There was an emphasis on the skills and processes necessary for creative NVC strategies.

Participants were taught methods of communication developed by Dr Marshall Rosenberg that encouraged compassionate responses to emotions and fostered empathy instead of blaming and judging one’s self and others.

They learnt about universal needs and that when those needs were met, people had peace, joy, and love. When needs were not being met, there were feelings such as frustration, anger and fear.

The participants were introduced to the four-step process to enable effective empathetic communication to manage conflicts and identified the difference between strategies of communication and stratergies of NVC. They were able to improve their skills on empathetic communication, which created heart to heart connections among people and groups.

The activites helped participants to improve their empathetic skills and clarify the difference between evaluations, story telling, judgements, advice and empathy.