Facilitate a Catalyst
Catalysts put Revolve community members in the driver’s seat to plan, implement, and attend high-quality, meaningful, peer-led gatherings. Potential facilitators propose ideas for thematic gatherings for community members to attend. These gatherings will provide space for the Revolve community to connect, inspire and collaborate. Each Catalyst gathering hosts 20 or more Revolve community members for a retreat type event focusing on personal and/or professional development through a Jewish lens.
Meet your 2019 Catalyst facilitators!
Training to lead a Catalyst
Revolve community members apply to host Catalyst programs on an annual basis. Once accepted, the facilitators attend the Catalyst Training, a multi-day training to develop group facilitators and leaders. These facilitators will design and implement thematic gatherings for the Revolve community while learning best practices of adult group facilitation. Skills learned at the Catalyst training will be applicable in many aspects of professional and personal life. Upon completion of the training, which teaches budgeting, logistics, and facilitation techniques, facilitators have three to eight months to plan their own gatherings for the Revolve community.
Running a Catalyst
Catalyst gatherings are content-specific events, acknowledging the diverse set of interests and personal/professional approaches to tikkun olam within Revolve. Throughout the year, facilitators engage in regular check-ins with the Revolve Catalyst Program Manager to review milestones that include logistics, wireframe, and recruitment. Facilitators receive funding from Revolve to host their gatherings, which they may supplement with participant fees and other fundraising or in-kind donations.
Benefits of leading a Catalyst
Planning and leading a Catalyst program is a unique professional development opportunity. At the training, facilitation partners learn the fundamentals of facilitation technique and gathering design from national leaders in the field. By practicing the ins-and-outs of successful group activities, facilitators will build skills to lead teams in their personal and professional lives. Facilitators receive an honorarium at the close of their Catalyst experience. Best of all, facilitators experience the joy and pride of designing and executing a catalytic experience for their peers in the Revolve community.
Attending a Catalyst
Catalyst gatherings are promoted to the Revolve community via social media, email newsletter, and personal outreach. Community members apply to attend Catalyst gatherings once the dates are finalized. Catalysts are open to all Revolve community members. In the spirit of our community of reciprocity, each Catalyst requires some form of participant buy-in, often in the form of travel expenses or a participant fee.
Frequently Asked Questions
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What is the time commitment to host a Catalyst gathering?
A high quality gathering requires 5-10 hours of work per week from facilitators, including regular check-ins with the Catalyst Program Manager and lots of independent work time. The work will ebb and flow – facilitators should be ready to make Catalyst a top priority in the weeks leading up to their gathering. A few key commitments required to participate:
- Attend four days of training (February 15-18, 2019)
- Take an additional four days to execute their Catalyst program
- Schedule planning time with facilitator partner every week
- Check in with Catalyst Program Manager at least once a month
- Adhere to a set of milestones and provide corresponding work products for Revolve Leadership Team review
What should I look for in a facilitator partner?
The team dynamic between you and your facilitation partner is essential to the success of the Catalyst program. Some have described the facilitator partnership as a temporary marriage. As you form teams and submit ideas for Catalyst, you and your partner should:
- Be sure you are on board for spending A LOT of time working together
- Understand each other’s communications styles
- Agree on the time commitment and effort required to put on a great Catalyst
- Have a deep trust in each other’s work and work ethic
How does the application process work?
Each team applies online, submitting one application. Upon review of the applications, the Revolve leadership team invites a selected group of applicants to a video interview. Catalyst applications are evaluated on the following criteria:
- Team Dynamic: Considers facilitator pair’s leadership skills, strength of working relationship, and ability to collaborate.
- Purpose: Demonstrates passion and intrinsic motivation to lead a Catalyst. Understands what they are looking to get out of this experience and what they can contribute. Displays a growth mindset and ability to roll with the punches.
- Impact: Articulates a vision for who would benefit from participating in this Catalyst, and what the impact of the gathering would be on that audience. Aligns impact to the mission of Revolve.
- Organization: Provides examples that demonstrate strong follow through, organizational skills, time management & work ethic.
- Overall Quality: Engages in the application process with thoughtful effort and professionalism.
Facilitators are selected based on the strength of their application and fit to the following values:
- Catalyst facilitators should reflect the diversity of the Revolve community
- The slate of Catalysts should meet a wide range of community needs and interests
- Catalysts should develop leadership across a broad base of Revolve community members
How many people can be on a team to submit an application?
All applications must be submitted in teams of two. Each Catalyst program will have two facilitators that manage a team to successfully design and run a gathering. All Catalyst facilitator duos will bring on at least one additional team member to run logistics at the gathering and should consider adding additional community members to their team.
How many Catalyst facilitators will be accepted?
Our goal is for the Catalyst program to create 150 participant spots across programs in 2019. The number of facilitators selected will depend on the estimated size of gatherings. Revolve will accept up to 10 facilitators (5 teams) to create Catalysts for the community.
Do I have to attend the Catalyst Training in order to host a Catalyst gathering?
Yes, all facilitators must attend the facilitation training February 15-18 in Detroit, Michigan. They must be there for the duration of the experience. Programming begins early Friday morning and closes Monday afternoon. Participants who have work or school should expect to request a full day off on Friday, and on Monday if their organization does not have Presidents’ Day off. Participants may need to travel the evening of Thursday, February 14 depending on their origin location.
Revolve will work with all selected facilitators to make accommodations for needs they might have to fully participate in the gathering, including dietary restrictions, childcare options, religious observance and accommodations for any disabilities.
What types of gatherings are you looking for?
First and foremost, all Catalyst gatherings should reflect the mission of Revolve. Revolve’s mission can be found here:
Revolve is a community that seeks to catalyze the passion and enhance the leadership skills of exceptional educational advocates to effect positive change and realize their potential through personal and professional development grounded in Jewish values.
Catalysts should also reflect the diversity of thought and interests within the Revolve community. Gathering topics should be meaty enough to spend 3 days learning and universal enough to attract interest from about 20-60 people from the Revolve community. Applicants should be extremely passionate about the topic of their proposed Catalyst gathering.
Where can Catalyst gatherings take place?
At this time, Catalyst gatherings must be located within the United States, for reasons of liability and logistical limitations. During training, we encourage facilitators to consider how location can impact programming and participant access to the Catalyst.
How fleshed out should my Catalyst topic be when I apply?
Facilitator teams should plan to establish a strong vision for their Catalyst before submitting their applications. Although facilitators can expect to continue to develop their Catalyst program at the Catalyst Training, it is important to have a clear vision for how your Catalyst will professionally and/or personally develop the participants in alignment to Revolve’s mission. Strong applications include a clear alignment to Revolve’s mission in addition to the demonstration of the leadership capacity of your partnership.
What size gathering should I apply to create?
The ideal number of participants for a Catalyst depends on the topics covered at the program. For example, a Catalyst designed to have creative community members unleash their inner artist may appeal greatly to a small, niche group. On the other hand, a Catalyst designed to sharpen communities members’ vision of racial justice in their work may appeal to a broader cross section of our community. Ultimately, you should select the anticipated size of your gathering based on how many people you believe the program will serve.
- Small: 20 to 30 participants
- Medium: 30 to 50 participants
- Large: 50+ participants
Is the time commitment or funding different depending on the size of program I want to plan?
Planning a small gathering will require the same time, energy, and work as planning a large gathering. The time commitment for all programs is outlined above. Funding is allocated to each gathering on a per-attendee basis.
I have already led a Catalyst program. Can I apply to lead another program?
Yes. Given the unique professional development opportunity and limited resources, community members who have not yet led a Catalyst gathering will be given preference over those who have led one. A Catalyst program can occur again, either the same topic or the same theme, with new facilitators.