Train-the-Trainers

Introducing: Safe Zone Train-the-Trainer Retreat Guide

Meg Bolger Sam Killermann

Getting a Safe Zone program off the ground and training new facilitators just got a tiny bit easier. Don’t get us wrong: we know it’s still a Herculean task.

Today we are really excited to introduce you to our newest curriculum: The Safe Zone Train-the-Trainer Retreat Guide.

This guide is meta-tastic: it’s a guide for trainers who want to train other people on how to be Safe Zone trainers for other people.

Put in a less 🤯 way: if you want to help prepare a group to lead Safe Zone trainings, this is for you! You can get started over on the Train-the-Trainer Toolkit Page, or keep reading below for more information.

what’s in the Retreat guide?

This guide is a step-by-step, activity-by-activity walkthrough to plan, prepare, and run a two-day train-the-trainer retreat.

Weighing in at over 75 pages, it has everything you need to know:

  • All the individual activities we’d recommend for a TTT, from the LGBTQ+ content knowledge to the facilitator skills
  • Advice on logistics, participant selection, supplies, prep, etc.
  • A retreat schedule with detailed walkthroughs for every step

And a whole lot more.

Like with our Foundational Curriculum, we offer this to you as editable Google Docs for your customizing convenience.

WHo is the retreat guide for?

The short answer: it’s for folks who have some Safe Zone training experience themselves, who want to train new SZ facilitators, and who are looking for help in doing the latter.

We have a longer answer in the guide itself if you’re curious.

This guide is not, however, for training Safe Zone participants (i.e., it’s not a new LGBTQ+ 101 type training).

Why we stopped running Train-the-trainers

For years, we facilitated Safe Zone Train-the-Trainers as a service. We do not do that any more for a few reasons.

The first is that our goal for the Safe Zone Project has always been to be a free online resource first and foremost. When we were traveling around conducting Train-the-Trainers, we were spending more time doing the trainings than creating resources that could empower you to do your own.

The benefit of doing dozens of Train-the-Trainers with a ton of different types of organizations, however, was that we learned a lot of lessons. We did enough Train-the-Trainers to test out new activities and schedules, tweak our prep and goals, get a solid sense of what works well for most groups, and what doesn’t.

We realized we were at a place where we could literally write down all that stuff we had learned, and translate it into a guide for others to follow. And that’s exactly what we did with this guide. We stopped accepting Train-the-Trainer requests, and started planning out the Safe Zone Train-the-Trainer Toolkit.

And the final reason we’re happy to have worked ourselves out of a “job” by providing these resources to empower you to do these trainings yourself: this is way more sustainable!

At least in terms of gas, dollars, logistics, and the ability for an organization to keep improving their Safe Zone Program, running it all internally is the best way to go. We’ll count on you to print responsibly, and we can add some sustainability points on that measure as well.

From Us, To You: Use it to do some good.

We’re really excited to share this with you.

The Train-the-Trainer Retreat Guide is uncopyrighted, like all of our other activities and curricula, and you can use it in whatever ways you want to advance the goals of LGBTQ+ inclusion, understanding, and respect in your community. And we hope you do just that.

We truly appreciate how much energy, effort, and labor goes into a train-the-trainer. While this guide won’t make all the chaos disappear, we hope it helps you identify a walkable path forward to getting a Safe Zone program up and running.

You can get started now.

As always, let us know how we can help!

❤️ Meg & Sam