Understory Collective

Growing a community of empathic facilitators to meet the needs of our time

A key way we intend to grow toward our mission is by supporting the development of new facilitators. We wanted to scale to meet the needs of our clients and do it in a diverse, equitable, and inclusive way but we needed a structure. 

For this we turned to nature, specifically, the mycorrhizal network. This is a network of fungal threads that connect tree roots through the soil. It’s also known as the “Wood Wide Web” and the discovery of this network was made by Suzanne Simard. You can learn more about it here. The name came from inspiration found in the book The Overstory by Richard Powers.

We took this model and applied it to new members of our community, our saplings. We thought about what they might need, what they might gain through connection with more experienced “Mother Trees” and what the community might gain from this collective connection. Soon a structure materialised that has allowed us to scale in line with our values and expand our portfolio through partnerships and referrals. We’ve vetted facilitators expertise by guiding them through a course on difficult conversations, observed their workshops and provided constructive feedback, and paired them with a Mother Tree to provide ongoing development and support. 

Meet the Understory Collective

Next steps

Book in a call with Sophia to discuss your needs and aims for yourself or your team.
Together we will identify if we’re a good fit and map out the right program for your organisation.