As needed, individual or group conversations with participants and/or loved ones can be useful to discuss experiences during a single session or the program as a whole. This is a valuable way to gather feedback for future improvements. From time to time it can also be useful to make individual connections to discuss any difficulties, to allow participants to share concerns, or continue relationship building. As with other interactions, always speak to the participant themselves when discussing questions or difficulties whenever possible, rather than speaking about them to their care partner. There will be times when that person’s support in this process is needed too, but always think carefully about who you are speaking to and why.
If you are co-facilitating with others, or if you work with community partners, a short debrief can be a wonderful learning opportunity. It is a great time to share observations and discuss successes and new strategies to try next time. It is hard to see everything when you are the lead of a program, and becoming aware of things you may not have noticed can help further your own development.
We also recommend a few moments of reflection for each facilitator following a session. Make notes in a journal or document about what you talked about, what questions were asked and how they were answered, and how you felt about the interactions. This will be useful for immediate improvement, and for later as well, when you are planning new programs or reporting on programs. A reflective practice is a successful practice.