SFL Prairie School for Union Women 2016
From April 18th – 22nd, 2016, I attended the SFL/CLC Spring School at Elk Ridge, SK. This was the first SFL/CLC Spring School that I attended and I can’t think of a more beautiful location to have it than at Waskesiu, Saskatchewan! The course that I was enrolled in was the Labour Community Advocate course. I’ll be honest in that this course wasn’t my first choice when I had signed up for the school, but looking back on it, I’m very glad I enrolled in it. The instructors, Andrea and Kurt, were very knowledgeable, approachable, and friendly. They were able to keep the class engaged by incorporating humor, group activities, and role-playing throughout the course. One of the most important concepts that you take away from this class is that the member is the one driving the bus. To me, that means that as a labour community advocate, you are there to provide the support, resources, and tools that the member may need, but in the end, the member is the one that has to take the first step. We also discuss topics such as harassment, mental health, stress, equity, privilege, understanding violence, and community services. I learned that there are many community organizations & resources available to our members, some of which I wasn’t even aware of. This course provided me with the knowhow to be able to go back to my work and personal life confident in my ability to apply the skills and knowledge learned and to seek out the resources that I need. I would recommend this course to any individual that is interested in becoming more involved in their union, but perhaps isn’t comfortable in a steward role. It is also a great course for individuals already involved as stewards that want to improve their communication and advocacy skills.