Beyond what we see
MARCH TO MAY, 2024
“The more beautiful world our hearts know IS possible”
Alongside 18 curious fellows, Nicola and Peter from Befriend are hosting their third installment of ‘The Possibility Fellowship’ this March – a 12 week adventure exploring and learning together.
How we see the world determines how we act, think and feel. It even affects the language we use to make sense of our world.
If we see life as limited, we’re likely to grab what we can and hold on tight to it. If we see life as abundant, we are more likely to give and share with others.
If we see strangers as some form of threat, we’re more likely to be fearful and keep our distance. If we see them as human, as a neighbour, brother or sister, we’re more likely to find meaningful ways to connect.
How we see ourselves also affects how we act and what is possible for how we contribute. If I see myself as inadequate and unworthy, I will feel stuck. If I see myself as unique and full of potential, the possibilities for contribution and connection become infinite.
This is where The Possibility Fellowship comes in. It’s a space to explore and learn how to think differently about the world and yourself, and in turn, act with heartfelt intention, hope and possibility.
WHAT IS THE POSSIBILITY FELLOWSHIP?
The Possibility Fellowship was dreamt up by Befriend team members Nicola and Peter back in 2020. They wanted to provide a safe and nourishing space for people to learn more about life, about community, about each other, and to discover what they most care about.
And so, The Possibility Fellowship was born! A 12-week program where together, we explore new ways of looking at the world, with all its complexity!
This course is filled with both creative practice and theory. Some of your presumptions might be challenged, and you might be stretched. It’s personal, interactive and a little wild… there’s a danger you could become more cheerful and want to dance!
WHAT WILL YOU DISCOVER?
- Gift Discovery (Discover what’s uniquely meaningful to you, and why giving your gift is key to a fulfilling and connected life)
- Storytelling (Grow bridges of empathy between you and me, us and them)
- Complexity (See living as opportunity for creative adaptation in every moment)
- Warm Data (Appreciate information that is alive, can’t be measured and is very real)
- Social Entrepreneurship (Explore how to creatively meet the double bind of doing good in the world while providing for yourself and your family)
GROW YOUR OWN POSSIBILITY (PROJECT)
It’s possible you may want to grow a project throughout the course of the Possibility Fellowship.
Perhaps you already have an idea, or you’ve started a seedling project that you’d love to develop. Or perhaps you’ve been involved in different community contexts or employed in a helping profession, and you care deeply about people.
The focus is on you – your stories, gifts and passions – whatever it is that lights your fire! And if you have no idea what that is (and many of us don’t!), something might emerge for you when ready.
Our last gathering in the Fellowship is a mini-showcase of all that we’ve learnt. You’ll be able to share a ‘glimpse’ of your journey with friends, family and fellow graduates and to share your emerging possibilities.
IS THE POSSIBILITY FELLOWSHIP FOR ME?
You will likely get a lot of value from this program if you:
– Are already working or volunteering in community spaces (or you’d like to!)
– Are troubled by all the complex and ‘wicked’ problems our society faces
– Are at a pivotal point in your life where you’re looking for ‘the next thing’
– Are deeply committed to exploring a life of belonging, meaning and purpose
Peter and Nicola always have a friendly conversation with anyone who expresses interest in participating in the The Possibility Fellowship. This will allow you to make sure it’s a good fit.
“I feel like a trampled blossom that has suddenly been revived with so much nurture. You and Nicola gently beckon me to show up as I am. And actually find value in my journey.” – Sharon Soares
“Your endless creativity during this Course has given us surprises all along the way. This was a course without a detectable rudder, steering us unerringly toward our own greater identity and therefore our greater inspiration.” – Carla van Raay
“When I started I was in limbo. Do I walk back on the path I was going on, or do I try to find something different, something new? I learned that my community work doesn’t have to be grand, that it can start from the people all around me. The Fellowship experience gave me clarity about my gifts and confidence to give them.” – Leo Wu
MEET YOUR HOSTS
Peter and Nicola-Jane le Breton are Befriend Hosts and Thinking Partners at Befriend. Together, they nurtured the idea for The Possibility Fellowship into being, launching it in 2022 and offering it again earlier this year. They’re excited to invite you to join us for the next round of the Fellowship, 2024! Both Nicola and Peter are Warm Data Lab Hosts certified by the International Bateson Institute in Sweden, and in the last couple of years, have introduced the Befriend community to a number of Warm Data Lab conversations.
Peter le Breton
Peter has experience in business, government and academia. He is a warrior for social justice, freedom and human potential. He has a PhD in Transformative Studies from California Institute of Integral Studies and awards from Murdoch University and the Australian Government for outstanding contributions to student learning. Peter is a Core Gift Discovery Master Facilitator.
Nicola le Breton
Nicola has a passion for nurturing authentic relationships and safe spaces in which people can open their hearts and minds and reflect together on what matters. She has Diplomas in Community Services and in Conservation & Land Management and is a graduate of Storytelling Beyond Words, at Emerson College in the UK. She is a Certified Trainer and Advanced Master Facilitator of the Core Gift Discovery™ process.
The first weekend brings the group together and lays a foundation of shared stories and meaningful connection among us.
On the final weekend we celebrate our journeys and we share our inspirations, and we graduate the Fellowship. You will receive a certificate at the end.
There are four half-day gatherings fortnightly between the opening and closing weekends.
Connecting & Imagining — First weekend
Sat 9th March (9.30 am to 4.30 pm)
Sun 10th March (midday to 6 pm)
Four Gatherings — Saturdays 1 pm to 5.00 pm
* 23 March (29 March is Good Friday)
* 6 April (3 week break)
* 27 April
* 11 May
Presenting & Celebrating — Final weekend
Sat 25th May (9.30 am to 4.30 pm)
Sun 26th May (midday to 6 pm)
Our intention is to create a genuinely inclusive space in which any ‘possibility enthusiast’ can flourish, irrespective of their financial circumstances. Whilst the course is valued at over $2,000, we invite you to pay-what-you-can, to utilise our scholarship options, and/or offer an exchange of your skills and passions!
Your offering will not affect your chances of being accepted onto this course. Instead, we will look at your application and talk with you to better understand your passion and alignment with what the Fellowship offers.
You will need to purchase a copy of Combining by Nora Bateson. The book gives you access to themes and activities throughout the course. Combining has something for everyone. A blend of essays, stories, poetry and graphic art, an invitation to nurture genuine connections and explore “Warm Data” – the interrelationships that integrate elements of every complex system.
Buying the book won’t be an additional cost, as you are welcome to deduct the price of the book from your course fees and/or any exchange arrangements.
WHERE IS THIS TAKING PLACE?
The 2024 Fellowship is taking place in The City of Swan this time.
65 Yule Avenue
Set in beautiful countryside between two rivers, Minchin Centre is a peaceful retreat site, a perfect gathering place for The Possibility Fellowship.
The venue is not easy to access via public transport. However, we are happy to arrange pick up and return from Midland Station or elsewhere if that makes it easier for you. Travelling together has the added bonus of connecting with other Fellows.
If you are keen to join 18 fellows for the third installment of The Possibility Fellowship, or curious to find out more, then click below to head over to Google Forms where you can submit your application.
Peter and Nicola will then be in touch to arrange a conversation, so you can make sure this course is a good fit for you.
Alternatively, reach out to Peter and Nicola via their contact details above with your questions!
Our vision is an inclusive, connected world. We exist to spark human connection between people from diverse backgrounds, to grow inclusive communities in which all people are valued and belong.
And if you still can’t find what you’re looking for, please do get in touch!
“Would the Fellowship be suitable for me if I don’t have a particular project in mind?”
Absolutely. The most important attribute is that you care for others and are passionate about community, by which we mean living well together. Previous Fellows ranged from those who were uncertain of their direction and what to do next, to those who have been involved with a project for a long time and looking for new possibilities within their field.
“Forms aren’t really my thing… how in-depth do you want my application to be?”
Your application serves two purposes. It gives us a taste of who you are, what you have done, and what you care about. And it gives you a chance to reflect on how the Fellowship might benefit you. We highly recommend you keep your responses as brief as you like. The last thing we want to do is make it hard for you to apply for the Fellowship. We’re also super-happy to fill out the form on your behalf during a phone chat.
“I love this, but money is SO tight right now and I can’t afford it...”
We know that money is tight for many people. Fortunately, the Fellowship is a partially funded course, and we can offer deep discounts. We’re also open to periodic payments, exchange arrangements and in-kind contributions. We ask you to offer what you want to and can afford. We will always do what we can to make it possible for you to join us if you are passionate about living with integrity and generosity and learning together.
“What sort of time commitment is involved? Is there homework?”
You do you! We strongly encourage you to attend all sessions of the Fellowship, and we also understand that “life happens”, and occasionally you may need to miss a session. How much time you spend nurturing your ‘possibility project’ between sessions is totally up to you. We suggest allowing a couple of hours per week to meet up with other fellows (online or in person), to deepen your connections with each other and dive deeper into some of the creative and reflective activities we will share with you. We will offer a rotating roster of triads to support diverse connections throughout your journey.
“I’m a bit nervous about having to do a presentation at the end…”
We get that public speaking is not everyone’s jam, and we want to assure you that the final glimpse sharing is fun, playful and low-pressure! It’s just a bunch of friendly people coming together and sharing what each feels passionately about… perhaps with a story, a game, an activity or even (if you’re so inclined) some slides. And you can always team-up with another fellow or opt-out. It’s your journey and your choice.