At their best, group events can serve as bridges between participants and promote learning through community building. They can reinforce the need for communication, co-learning, and collective action.
At their worst, group events can actually be tools of oppression and alienation and serve to support vertical practices that isolate people from each other everyday. As Paulo Freire wrote, “A real humanist can be identified more by his trust in the people, which engages him in their struggle, than by a thousand actions in their favor without that trust.”
In this sense, excellent facilitation requires that we all become humanists who engage participants with each other, followers with leaders, and teachers with students.