Companionship 'Train the Trainer' Event for Fort Wayne's African-American Faith Leaders

Friday, Aug. 19 & Saturday, Aug. 20
at The Lutheran Foundation, 3024 Fairfield Ave.

The Lutheran Foundation will host a two-day Companionship Workshop "Train the Trainer" event for Fort Wayne’s African-American faith leaders, led by Rev. Jermine Alberty, Executive Director of Pathways to Promise. As a participant, you will have the opportunity to experience the 4-hour Companionship workshop firsthand during Friday morning, and then go through the 1.5-day long "Train the Trainer" portion to learn how to lead the Companionship workshop in your church and community.

Rev. Jermine Alberty

Rev. Jermine Alberty, M. Div., is the Executive Director of Pathways to Promise. He has 25 years of experience in the human service field, having served in nonprofits, faith communities, mental health organizations, and city government. He has also worked in the mental health field as a program director and educator trainer for 12 years. He is a national trainer of the Companionship Movement and Mental Health First Aid USA.

Friday, August 19:
8 am-12 pm Companionship Workshop
12-1 pm Lunch
1-4 pm Train the Trainer, Part 1

Saturday, August 20:
8:30 am-3:30 pm Train the Trainer, Part 2 (with a working lunch included)

*Note: You must participate in the full training both days to receive trainer certification.

Cost: $250 per person (The Lutheran Foundation is covering more than two-thirds of the total cost per person for this training). Snacks and lunch will be provided both days.

Why be trained as a Companionship Trainer?
Being trained as a Companionship Trainer will allow you to lead Companionship workshops in your church and community to help reduce the stigma of mental illness and build a more caring community within your congregation through a model of relational engagement that is supportive of mental wellness.

What is Companionship?
Companionship is a practice of presence. Rooted in our natural capacities as humans to act on our concern for another person, companionship is a relational response to isolation and distress, supportive of healing and recovery. Companionship is not about “fixing” but instead welcomes the stranger, building a circle of care with individuals who are facing emotional and mental health challenges.

There are 5 basic Practices of Companionship:

  1. Hospitality: Creating safe space and respecting the dignity, humanity, and agency of the other
  2. Neighboring: Leveling power dynamics to walk together on the same plane
  3. Side-by-Side: Respecting the agency or capacity of the other by walking alongside them without confronting, pressuring or taking over their situation
  4. Listening: Listening with openness and the belief that we each have something to learn from the other
  5. Accompaniment: Helping the other in specific ways without overstepping our limits

Often, people want to help where they see need; however, it can be difficult to approach or relate to a person in distress. Some feel more comfortable to act on their concern for another by giving a donation or providing food. Our 4-hour Companionship Workshops are designed to help individuals gain the knowledge, skills, and confidence to move beyond the serving counter and into genuine relationships with people in need. Participants will learn ways to embody the 5 Practices of Companionship, how to honor your own limits throughout such work, and to understand the depth at which Companionship has the power to shift a person’s perspective and life. Our goal is to provide communities with the tools to listen consciously to the stories and difficulties of others, to enable at least a momentary reprieve from adversity, and to encourage strengthening for the journey ahead.

Email Deaconess Carole Terkula or call her at (260) 458-2115.

Feel free to forward this information to other African-American faith leaders!


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