The Art of Hosting

Paul Smart
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  • Boscombe
  • United Kingdom
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Profile Information

How did you learn about Art of Hosting (please add the date and place) and what attracted you to it?
I read Jaworski's 'Synchronicity - the inner path of leadership ' in 1999/2000 and that started a journey for me, a series of connections that lead to me attending an Art of Hosting training at Hazelwood in 2006 with Toke, Monica, Maria and Sarah. I was attracted to it as it resonated with me and I recognised the techniques and ethos in me.

I attended a further AoH training at Hazelwood in 2009.
Tell us about your experience with Art of Hosting as part of your life and work. What would you say your competence in it is? (new, starting practitioner, experienced practitioner, steward)
I worked within a local authority for 28 years (until March 2011) and have always hosted people and been a servant leader. Some elements of the AoH have always been with me. I have worked with young people all my working life, those who do not attend or 'succeed' at school. I have used AI, cafe and circle in small groups within Children's Services since 2006 but have never the techniques in organisational or systemic change. The LA system is command and control and I was never able to win the hearts and minds of those who controlled.

I have always applied the AoH principles (creating space, speaking from the heart etc) and some of the practices since 2006. I have not been part of an intentional core team.

I would put myself as a knowledgeable and experienced practitioner of some of the practices but have yet to experience being part of a core team.
What is the primary field/topic/focus in your hosting work?
I was made 'redundant' in March 2011 (what a wonderful word that is, I have never felt less redundant) and can now walk on.

I have always worked with and for children, young people and their families. The focus has always been on those facing issues/problems/difficulties. I have extensive experience in working with, and hosting, the most vulnerable and disengaged.

I am a connector, a weaver, a fool with an ability to make gatherings and meetings flow and use the energy of the people.

Where I am now is challenging and exciting. If it is 'all hands on deck' at this time of world change I have stopped looking for the deck and the shift in me at the Art of Collaborative Leadership 2011 is to see that I am the deck.

I am ready to be part of a core team or to call one. Something will happen!
Where do you live/work?
I live in Bournemouth and can work anywhere.
Are there interests/passions that you'd like to share?
Particular knowledge of schools, education and children's services. Also of Child Protection and Safeguarding.

Music, laughter, life, the earth, sitting round fires, hugs.

Paul Smart's Blog

Harvest for the World

I love music, alway have. There are certain tracks/songs though, that transcend liking or loving.

They are part of me, it could be the music or the words or a combination. Some mark a time in my life. Some are timeless and take me to another place. Harvest for the World by the Isley Brothers is one of the latter. Whenever I hear it I smile all over. It tickles me. It's message is so simple.

Last week I was reading the messages from Maria and Sarah in Athens and was moved, scared… Continue

Posted on June 23, 2011 at 3:26pm — 1 Comment

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At 4:28am on June 14, 2011, Mary Alice Arthur said…
Paul, great to see you here and welcome you here!  Please, when you have the time, load a photo (and did you mean to have your surname there with a comma in it, or did you just miss the "m"?), and have a look at the conversation forums that are in action, that's where we can contribute to each other.  I hope you find great community in the Art of Hosting network!

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