Purpose of Forum Series
This series is meant to provide a forum for people to discuss their commitments to environmental sustainability in tension with other economic and social concerns. As facilitators, your role will be to help people understand, clarify, and deal constructively with these tension they feel between their ethical commitments to environmental health and their commitments to economic and social health using their exiting religious or philosophical views. Part of the facilitator’s role is to teach participants about historical and current environmental trends, and part of the facilitator’s role is to facilitate discussion as participants bring together newly acquired knowledge about environmental sustainability with their existing religious or philosophical values in conversation with others in the room who may agree or think differently. The aims of this Forum Series can contribute to larger goals that you, as a facilitator, might have for your group. For example, you may be here because you want members of your church to be more comfortable talking about money and environmental values because you’d like the board to consider LEED building standards in a new building project. Or perhaps you want your division’s environmental performance to align better with the company’s sustainability goals, or you want your charity to pursue environmental goals in a more business savvy way. This Forum Series can help prompt such conversations within each of your contexts.
Before you begin teaching, take a moment to reflect on what overarching goals you have. Ask yourself these questions:
• What larger purpose might this Forum Series serve for my context?
• What do I hope to achieve by facilitating this Forum Series in my context?
• How can this Forum Series help promote environmental sustainability in my context?