Stories of Independent Facilitation: Talia’s Personal Network of Support

In the first of our video series of stories about Independent Facilitation, Talia’s mother, Amy, talks about how Talia’s personal support network has been nurtured and grown. Click to see more of this inspiring story!


My name is Amy. My daughter’s name is Talia, and Talia is 24. And we’ve always been interested in Facilitation since my daughter was 18, and she began aging out of a lot of activities and supports for children. So we were looking at ‘Where do we go from here’.

And she’s always been very involved in the community as a child, and we thought, how do we keep that going for her as an adult?

How does Independent Facilitation contribute to what Talia wants?

Let me take you into a circle meeting when my daughter was leaving school … so, my daughter was 21, and we went with our facilitator Joanna, and Talia met with her too, and really spent some time saying what she wanted to do …

Our daughter was very clear that she wanted to be doing regular things in the community.

She has a closed Facebook group, and there’s about 30 people on there, so people who leave the circle are still communicating with Talia.

And I say there’s about 15 people now that are a core, and at a typical meeting maybe 10 people show up, but it constantly changes.

What are the benefits of the relationships you’ve build through Independent Facilitation?

For example, my daughter loves to sing, and someone in our network said there’s this fantastic new drop-in choir, in a bar that meets Tuesday nights and I love to sing too, and I’m going to go with you.

And she’s there as a singer, not as a person with a disability…

It really becomes a community, people get to know each other. An example is someone in the circle said, ‘Hey I’m looking for an apartment.’ So everyone’s brainstorming … I found a job that would be perfect for a circle member, so I told her about it and gave her an incredible reference, she got the job

We had a roomful of people and Talia said for example, you know, I go to the Y, I exercise there, and wouldn’t it be cool to volunteer there, and someone in the circle said ‘You know what? I actually work for the Y and I know all the people there and
I know the volunteer coordinator and let me hook you up’. And so what do you know, six years later and Talia’s been volunteering there once a week and also gets a free membership.

It takes a lot of work, it’s not like we just snapped our fingers and all these things happened. But that’s very different than ‘Oh here’s a program, there’s the wait list, here’s the funding…’

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