Coaching circles

Hefyd yn Gymraeg

Those of us who are working to change the food system in Wales are part of a powerful movement. Food is the source of life, and if we are able to see it as that rather than simply as a commodity, we can align with our values and work effectively to benefit others. However, we often lose sight of this, and become lost in short-term crises and limiting beliefs. We may take on too much, lose focus, or find that our plans are frustrated by external factors we feel unable to change.

That is why it is so helpful to have a peer support group, where we can reconnect with our inspiration and power, and find more skillful ways of working. There are many ways of doing that, such as Action Learning Sets and co-coaching circles, and this Case Clinic model which is taken from the Presencing Institute website (read about the food system and Theory U here).

Groups such as these are being actively promoted by Welsh Government, which is also working with Audit Wales to provide support to a wide and growing range of action learning sets and co-coaching circles and other peer support groups across Wales.

My proposal is that we set up a number of circles for food activists in Wales, using the case clinic model. Additionally, and optionally, the circles could be supported by me and by Diana Reynolds at Welsh Government, who will join me for ‘meta’ sessions which will enable us to draw on the Welsh Government’s insights into the behavioural sciences and Audit Wales’ analysis of innovation in response to the Covid pandemic. There will be no charge.

Interested? A first introductory session on Zoom was a success and there will be two more on Friday 5 March at 11-12.30pm (note change in time), and Friday 26 March at 11-12.30pm. You can come to just one, or both. Please contact me (jane [at] for more information and to get the Zoom link. I look forward to hearing from you!

“I just wanted to let you know how incredibly useful I found today’s coaching session. It has really reframed the way I experienced the meeting I found so difficult and provided me with so many constructive tools with which to approach and handle it differently.”

Community Gardening Volunteer

“Participating in a coaching circle made me feel less alone and isolated with my own problems. It reminded me of the need to connect and talk and that the power of just listening is huge. ”

Youth Project Officer

“My first coaching circle has permanently changed the way I listen, which has had a profound impact on my productivity at work and confidence to deal with the hard conversations that are part being a leader within food activism.”

Organizer of county food strategy