Learn all about 'nonviolent communication' at this CityCoHo workshop series - Generocity Philly


Sep. 1, 2016 2:11 pm

Learn all about ‘nonviolent communication’ at this CityCoHo workshop series

The green coworking space in Rittenhouse is teaching people how to interact more compassionately. The program has a pretty cool funding model, too.


(Photo by Juliana Reyes)

Life is hard. We could all learn to interact with each other a little better to make it less hard.

Enter CityCoHo, the city’s sustainability-focused coworking space, which is hosting a six-week workshop series on “nonviolent communication” — that is, the practice of compassionate, empathetic and judgment-free communication.

CityCoHo cofounder Max Zahniser said he believes nonviolent communication “contains very real truths, frames for thinking about our own and each others’ needs, and how we interact that are very valuable to the change agents we’re seeking to serve.”

The series will be held on Wednesday evenings starting on Sept. 14.

Register to attend

Perhaps the coolest thing about the series is that CityCoHo isn’t charging participants a regular fee, but asking them to contribute to a “money pile” reminiscent of the ever-popular giving circles.

Here’s how it works:

  • Participants bring $50 in cash on day one.
  • They get back $10 for every session they attend, which incentivizes them to come back.
  • At the end of the series, any leftover funds (from people not showing up to get their money back) go into a “pile.”
  • The group collectively decides, based on practices learned during the series, how to allocate the funds based on what they feel was the series’ worth.

Therefore, funds might go to the instructor, CityCoHo or somewhere else.

The money pile will serve as “a hands-on, tangible practice of what we’ll learn in the nonviolent communications workshop, how to work through differing communication of how to allocate those funds,” said Jen Hombach, CityCoHo community manager.

CityCoHo is able to offer the series inexpensively because of its longstanding relationship with the instructor, “but we still want people to recognize the value,” Zahniser said. “We feel this is very aligned with our mission of coalescing the entrepreneurship, social impact, and environmental movements, and then cultivating skills and capabilities within it.”

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