Dr. Dan Buttry to lead Trainers for Change Training


Conflict. It’s a word we read in our newsfeeds daily. It’s often combined with grim words like long, bloody and violent. Sometimes it’s combined with “resolution,” which implies that a way was found to mollify all parties enough to halt the conflict. But the best possible combination is with “transformation.” Conflict transformation, turning the conflict into something else.

Dr. Dan Buttry, is a global consultant for peace and justice with the American Baptist International Ministries. His mission is peace, and he travels the world to help others in regions of social and political conflict and within church communities create it. This June, Detroiters interested in learning the tools Dr. Buttry uses in this work have the opportunity to participate in a three day workshop with Dr. Buttry and co-facilitator Erika Thorne of Training for Change.

The purpose of the workshop, says Dr. Buttry, “is to teach people to do what I’m doing on their own, turning conflict from negative to constructive.”

“One of the foundational principals is that a group has everything it needs to meet its challenges. It has the wisdom. The question is, how do you bring that out?”

Rather than a traditional method of teaching principles and then applying them, this is an experiential process, starting with the experiences of the individuals or groups.

“We unpack what was in there, in that experience, and then draw generalized learning and then apply it back to our context,” explains Buttry. “It kind of opens up those channels to those experiences that are already present in the group. People learn far more from what they discover for themselves.”

“One of the things I love about this kind of education is that it’s not oppressive. It respects the culture.”

The June training is designed to help participants learn to create their own tools and design their own methodologies to bring groups into this experiential process.

“One of the things I’m excited about is how quickly you can do profound and significant stuff,” says Buttry, who has been a participant in the workshop three times, and uses the methodologies in his own work.

“It’s something people can go through more than once because the participants are different and you’re at a different point in your education. My toolbox is always growing. I’ve done it three times not because I’m a slow learner, but because I want to peel the onion and go a little bit deeper and that gives you a chance to do that.”

The workshop is designed for facilitators, consultants, trainers, and activists and organizers wanting to use training more effectively in their work, as well as teachers, community leaders, consultants and others who want more experiential tools.  It will be held at the International Hope Center in Hamtramck, beginning with dinner and registration at 6 p.m. Friday, June 5, 2015 and running until 5 p.m. Sunday, June 7, 2015.

Workshop Outline and Details

Training for Social Action Trainers

Join us for an intensive training designed for experienced facilitators wanting to revitalize their work, new trainers wanting to inspire, teachers, community leaders, activists — anyone wanting to take their skills to a new level and learn how training can be used more effectively.


Training and facilitation skills are a key element to successful organizing and movement building. People who have these skills support the groups they work with by developing new leaders, transferring skills and knowledge between generations, creating more participation within their groups, introducing new and transformative concepts, educating and engaging constituents, supporting meetings and decision making, resolving conflict and providing training for successful, creative and disciplined actions. Yet, few people who play the role of educator, trainer or facilitator in their work are offered an opportunity to learn a framework for training that supports their experience or a chance to hone their skills among other trainers. Few organizations commit the time to helping their leaders learn the craft of training. With this in mind, The Training for Social Action Trainers (TSAT) is designed to give people the opportunity to develop a stronger sense of the training tools, approaches and choices that will work for them to be most powerful and useful in their trainer role.


  • Gain greater awareness about yourself and your strengths as a facilitator;
  • Get a chance to take risks, experiment and refine skills in a safe and supportive environment;
  • Get the stimulation of fresh approaches and increased options;
  • Receive personal guidance from experienced trainers in a small group setting ;
  • Learn new tools that are easily adapted, principles of workshop design, skills for working with diversity and a better understanding of how to use experiential education methods effectively.


Experienced and less-experienced facilitators, consultants and trainers…Activists and organizers wanting to use training more effectively in their work… Teachers, community leaders, consultants and others who want more experiential tools. The TSAT is a great way to get introduced to Training For Change’s training style if you are considering bringing TFC trainers to work more closely with your organization or if you may be considering taking other trainings that we offer. Anyone who takes the TSAT is then qualified to be a participant at TFC’s Advanced Training of Trainers, an extended 6-day intensive the delves more thoroughly into group dynamics, conflict in groups, and working cross-culturally.


  • To enhance workshop facilitation and design skills
  • To increase the training tools you can use effectively
  • To gain greater awareness of yourself as facilitator
  • To meet and receive support from other trainers and learn about new developments in the field


The workshop begins with dinner and registration at 6 p.m. Friday, June 5, 2015 and runs until 5 p.m. Sunday, June 7, 2015.  The workshop hours for each day are as follows: Friday, start 6:00 pm, end between 9:00-10:00 pm dinner provided.  Saturday, (8:00 am breakfast) start 9:00 am, end between 9:00-10:00 pm lunch and dinner provided.  Sunday, (8:00 am breakfast) start at 9:00 am, end by 5:00 pm with lunch provided

Though the hours of this workshop are long, we’ve found that our experiential style helps keep people engaged, alert and energized through the weekend. We also provide time for short and extended breaks within our agenda and encourage participants to take care of themselves so that they can stay fully present. Please contact us in advance if you have questions or concerns about the long hours of this workshop. The workshop is designed as an experiential package with each session building on the previous session. We want to create the best learning environment possible for participants to absorb the combined learning of each session, and therefore WE DO NOT ALLOW PARTIAL ATTENDANCE!  You must commit to taking the entire workshop.

The central components of this workshop help participants build their skills in the areas of creating safety and cohesion so that a group can do its best work together, using experiential activities to ellicit the wisdom of the group and guide their learning, working with diversity within groups, and principles of design that support stronger workshops. Throughout the workshop there are multiple opportunities for discussion about specific questions or challenges that you may want to explore in this workshop. The TSAT is a fun but rigorous workshop and as participants stretch themselves to become better trainers, strong emotions can surface. We do our best to support you to take care of yourself in this workshop and get the most learning out of challenging moments.


The TSAT will be held at the International Hope Center, Hamtramck, Michigan (12101 Joseph Campau St).  Parking is available in the IHC parking lot as well as on the street.


You can register for this workshop with Dan Buttry at:  dbuttry@comcast.net.  The registration deadline is 15 days prior to the start of the workshop, May 21th. If the registration deadline has passed, you can still contact us to try to register but you may be added to a waiting list if the workshop is full.  There will be a maximum of 24 participants allowed in the workshop.


This workshop costs $200 US-$650 US, sliding scale based on income. The fee includes over 23 hours of training, meals during workshop hours, and simple lodging for people who request it. To determine your fee, use the chart below.

If your income is… You pay…
under US$15,000 $200 US
$15,001-$25,000 $270 US
$25,001-$35,000 $350 US
$35,001-$45,000 $425 US
$45,001-$55,000 $550 US
over US$55,000 $650 US


Are you being sent to the training by your employer? If so, don’t use your income to determine the fee — use the annual budget of the organization. If you are being sent by an organization with an annual budget over $200,000, the fee is $700 US.

Checks should be made payable to “International Ministries” with “Detroit TSAT” on the memo line.