International Intensive Training (IIT) in Turkey: October 2023

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9-day residential retreat in Nonviolent Communication

Join us for this residential retreat in Şirince, Turkey (06 - 15 October, 2023) that will help you bring nonviolence and peace into all areas of your life.

Building Bridges Across the Divided

In this IIT we come together to explore what can bring us to the table even if we are about to lose hope. We want to investigate together how Nonviolent Communication (NVC) can support people out of the polarization trap (separation) into mutual understanding, connection and finding ways of collaboration to create new possibilities.

Watch this video to meet the team that is hosting this training (English with Turkish subtitles):

When it comes to different viewpoints and/or intense emotions in a group, we tend to split off through arguments. The purpose of a dialogue is to open a space to listen and to be heard. When we sit in a dialogue circle, it is possible to understand the intense feelings and thoughts through expressing and hearing them. Our perspective stretched out by connecting to the heart's longings behind the arguments of each other. These conversations reveal mutual understanding that occurs change. So could we enter a space of cooperation.

In this event, you can discover skills that will help you improve the quality of your relationships, deepen your inner peace, and increase your contribution to the world.

This 9-day immersion experience into Nonviolent Communication (NVC) will offer learning sessions, home groups, coaching and feedback from skilled trainers, and a community environment where you can learn and practice the key skills of NVC.

Our team of Certified Trainers will share both the core curriculum of NVC as developed by Dr. Marshall Rosenberg, as well as their own unique applications. We expect a group of approximately 50 to 60 people from different countries, cultural backgrounds, professions and walks of life.

Group Turkey

People around the world are using Nonviolent Communication skills to transform conflict, create resiliency in their relationships, and build a world where everyone's needs matter and are met collaboratively.

We will create a dynamic learning laboratory that will show you how to create a more compassionate and peaceful culture in your life at home, at work, and in your community by learning how to:

  1. Speak from the heart
  2. Practice deep, non-judgmental listening
  3. Build self-empowerment from the inside out


 Basic Details

Format: In-person, 9-day residential retreat

Languages: English, Turkish

Begins: Friday, 06-October-2023 (5:00 pm)

Ends: Sunday, 15-October-2023 (1:00 pm)

Location: STOA (Center of Body Arts and Studies) (Şirince, Turkey)

Sponsor: Center for Nonviolent Communication

OrganizersÖzgen Saatçilar and Begüm Keçici

Steps to Register:

  1. Fill out the pre-registration form.
  2. Make your payment (or request financial assistance). Instructions will be provided after you submit the pre-registration form.
  3. The Organizers in Turkey will send you instructions on how to book your Room and Board.
  • Note: 5 weeks prior to the start of the training, we will send you a form asking you about your dietary preferences, special needs, or other things that will make your experience as successful and meaningful as possible. (Note: We will send you this form).


 Goals of this Training

The purpose of this training is to give you the opportunity to live the process of Nonviolent Communication in community over an extended period of time, in order to develop the mindsets and practical tools to help you in three areas: 

1. Personal and Professional Relationships

break time

  • Increase connection and closeness with the people you love.
  • Speak in a way that inspires compassion and understanding.
  • Initiate difficult conversations with more ease and confidence.
  • Remain centered and peaceful when receiving difficult messages.
  • Express and receive anger fully, safely and respectfully... yet powerfully.
  • Resolve long-standing conflicts and heal painful relationships.
  • Parent children from the heart and move beyond power struggles into cooperation.
  • Translate criticism, judgments and blame into life-serving messages.


2. Inner Transformation

  • Shift patterns of thinking that lead to depression, guilt and shame and that perpetuate pain.
  • Transform anger into self-understanding, thereby increasing inner peace.
  • Enliven yourself by expressing and receiving gratitude.
  • Learn to embody unconditional love.

3. Contribution to others and Social Change

When it comes to different viewpoints and/or intense emotions in a group, we tend to split off through arguments. When we come together in a dialogue circle, with the purpose of living the process of Nonviolent Communication in community we can understand the intense feelings and thoughts through expressing and listening to them. These conversations reveal mutual understanding. Our perspective stretched out by connecting to the heart's longings behind the arguments of each other.  That occurs change. So could we enter a space of cooperation.

In order to develop the mindsets and practical tools to help you to create social change we will practice to...

  • Share NVC in ways that transmit and model its power to transform and inspire others.
  • Create educational systems where students love learning and teachers love teaching.
  • Learn to engage in effective, lasting nonviolent social change in the tradition of Gandhi and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 
  • Facilitate meetings and support group decision making in a power-sharing, collaborative, and consensus-based ways.
  • Support holistic and human-based workplaces
  • Engage with others at work and in the community to foster openness, trust and authenticity.
  • Foster restoration and harmony by mediating conflicts and helping to resolve differences among others.

While we will prioritize these three areas in the curriculum, there is also room for co-creation. There will be opportunities for you to request specific topics and applications to support you in living and sharing NVC at work, home, and in the community as well as internally in how you relate to yourself.


 The Training Team

Each member of the training team is a Certified Trainer with the Center for Nonviolent Communication.

Kathleen Macferran

Trainer and Assessor: Kathleen Macferran (United States)

Facilitator, author, and Assessor (since 2010)

Kathleen is the founder and owner of Strength of Connection. She holds a vision for a peaceful, just, and sustainable world. Kathleen is committed to co-creating a world where peace replaces violence, love replaces hate, equity replaces inequity, and all people live meaningful lives.

For 20 years, she served as a workshop facilitator for the Freedom Project in Seattle, Washington, supporting healing and restoration inside and outside prisons through NVC, mindfulness, racial equity, and anti-oppression. Kathleen travels internationally offering facilitation, system building and conflict transformation using practical skills that lead to reconciliation with ourselves, our loved ones, and our communities. She has worked with individuals, community groups, businesses, schools, colleges, faith-based communities, hospitals, families, prison inmates, and correctional and law enforcement employees.

Prior to her work with nonviolence, Kathleen spent much of her life bringing harmony to communities through music, including two decades as a classical music conductor and leader of a nonprofit organization, and seven years as a public school music teacher.

Kathleen is co-author of Choice: A Field Guide for Navigating the Polarization of Our World and Living Interdependently. In addition, she is the author of the children’s books, How Giraffes Found their Hearts and, How Giraffes Got Their Ears, and conductor for Giraffe Tales, a children's CD setting those stories to music. She is the conductor on multiple Rainier Chamber Winds classical music recordings. Learn more about Kathleen.

Carl Plesner

Trainer: Carl Plesner (Denmark)

Professional leader of the Peace Engineer School in Ukraine

Carl has been a Certified Trainer since 2013 and specializes in crisis negotiation, dialogue facilitation, and reconciliation. His vision is to bring peace through dialogue to all levels of violent conflict, ranging from bullying in school, domestic violence to street protests and armed conflict. He is trained and experienced in addressing conflict both to prevent, to stop and to reconcile from physical violence. Carl has worked with and trained children, parents, teachers, social workers, police, rioters, military officers and priests, high level politicians, and many others.

In Carl's experience, the best cure to violence is love, and regardless of what label his training has, it is all about expanding our capacity to love and only to use force compassionately. He worked for Danish police as a “victim-offender” mediator. This taught him the craft of reconciliation, and provided a rich possibility to understand both the origins of violence and the damage of violence. He worked in the international mission OSCE SMM in Ukraine as a dialogue facilitation officer.

Here, he engaged with a large variety of people from all sides proactively engaged in (armed) conflicts, with the aim of supporting peaceful conflict resolution in local communities and maintaining local ceasefires in the conflict zone. For 5 years he was the lead trainer in the Peace Engineer School in Ukraine. In this program, participants went through a 12-month full-time program in dialogue facilitation, mediation, negotiation, reconciliation, and Nonviolent Communication, in order to be able to strengthen local social cohesion through dialogue-based conflict management. Carl is Danish and lives and works mostly in Ukraine. He has a wife and two children. Learn more about Carl.

Hagit Lifshitz

Trainer: Hagit Lifshitz (Israel)

Founder and Director of Mifgash (Encounter) For Conflict Transformation (Israel), NVC facilitator

Hagit was trained by Dr. Marshall Rosenberg, the founder of Nonviolent Communication, when she was a police officer who ran his intensive project in the Israeli Police. She has extensive field experience, since 1996, working with Palestinians and Israelis in conflict situations, facilitating processes of dialogue and deep mutual connecting and understanding, with various multicultural and multinational conflicting groups.

Hagit has a long-term field experience in conflict transformation and mediation, as a Social Welfare Officer and Educational Officer, in Human Rights, Ethics, Democracy, Human-Relations and Nonviolent Communication, and as a consultant for individuals and groups. Hagit co-initiated, organized, and served as a trainer in the three IIT's in the Mid-East in 2014, 2016, and 2020. She co-initiated, organized and trained in 10 international residential trainings in the Mid-East. She is a trainer in the NVC initiative by Carl Plesner – Peace Engineers School, in Kiyv, Ukraine. She is an Assessor-in-Training with Vivet Alevi and her team. She has trained NVC trainers in Israel for the last 9 years.

Hagit's main interests with NVC are: 1) Dialogue between conflicting groups such as Palestinian and Israeli; 2) Religious and non-religious; 3) Different ethnic groups with painful history; 4) Resilience in times of crisis, especially war, and political conflicts; and 5) Protective use of force. Hagit's education: M.A. in Educational Counseling from the Hebrew U. Jerusalem, Israel B.A. in Behavioral Sciences from Ben Gurion U. Beer Sheva, Israel Professional facilitator for conflicting groups Professional mediator for courts in Israel Professional trainer for courts' mediators in Israel. Learn more about Hagit


Judy Bleil Saruhan

Trainer: Judy Bleil Saruhan (Turkey)

Facilitator and Certified Trainer

In her 15 years of experience with NVC, Judy has worked with -- and learned from -- trainers and participants from 45 countries. She is currently one of 11 CNVC Certified Trainers in Turkey. While Judy offers workshops in English and Turkish to organizations, schools, parents and private groups, she also leads yearlong, deepening, and leadership programs to help people develop their skills and for those considering becoming certified trainers. She also provides private 1-on-1 empathy sessions and empathic coaching to individuals who are looking for support, clarity, self-connection, and concrete ways to make progress towards what matters to them most.

Judy is on the Board of the NVC Association in Turkey and is primarily focused on projects related to NVC in Education. Since 2016, she has been a presenter, guest speaker, and workshop leader at educational conferences. As a mother, she finds meaning in sharing NVC with parents and since 2017 has been offering the program “Heart Full Parenting,” which she co-created with Gizem Alav Şapçı, to families and adults working with children. As an artist, Judy brought her passion for art to living and sharing NVC together and worked with Hulya Tosun to develop “NVC with Art” and “Begin Where You Are” workshops. Continuing with her love of collaborating, creating and supporting NVC in Turkey, in 2020 she developed, along with Vivet Alevi and Deniz Spatart, the first Mentoring Program in Turkey. The last two years she has been enjoying the evolution of “LIPRO,” a yearlong leadership program that she and Vivet Alevi are tailoring to support participants to be agents of change or to become active in social change projects. 

Judy also enjoys working with trainers around the world to enrich NVC in Turkey. For example, she initiated having John Kinyon, Roxy Manning, and Kit Miller as guest trainers for “LIPRO.” In addition, she collaborated with Sura Hart to realize the Turkish version of “The No Fault Zone” game; with Jean Morrison to offer “Grok-it” in Turkish; and with François Beausoliel to share “The Blame Free State”; and with Yoram Mozenson to share “Radical Honesty” in Turkey. Although she was born and raised in the U.S., Judy has lived in Turkey for over 30 years. She is married and has raised her son and daughter in Istanbul. Prior to NVC, Judy worked in the areas of education as well as in quality consulting and textiles. Learn more about Judy.

Vivet Alevi

Trainer: Vivet Alevi (Turkey, Germany)


Vivet was born and raised in Turkey, studied Visual Communication at the University of Arts in Berlin, and has spent her entire adult life in Germany. For the past 18 years, she has been commuting between Berlin and Istanbul. She has worked as a social pedagogue in adult education. Vivet learned about NVC in 1999 and met Marshall Rosenberg in 2002, and became a Certified Trainer in 2004. She serves as a Certification Assessor for CNVC in the German-speaking Northeast team since 2011. I have been planting the seeds of NVC in Turkey since 2005 and now I am enjoying the thriving NVC community there.

In 2013, Vivet co-founded the Turkish Association for NVC (Şiddetsiz Iletişim Derneği aka Si-Der) in Istanbul. She has led trainings in Germany, Turkey, Cyprus, and Slovenia. With her professional and life experience, she offers Nonviolent Communication training seminars, mediation, consultancy, and mentoring to individuals, couples, groups and to those working in the business world, institutions and organizations. Vivet is passionate about two fields: 1) Protection of child development, especially focusing on adults who give care to (or care for) children; and 2) Bridging the gap between personal development and social change. Since 2020, her focus has been on this area and for the last two years, has collaborated with Judy Bleil-Saruhan to train leaders for change and support the transfer of NVC consciousness into systems. Learn more about Vivet.

 The Organizers


Ozgen Saatcilar portrait

Organizer: Özgen Saatçilar (Turkey, Germany)

Certified Trainer

Özgen got acquainted with Nonviolent Communication in 2013, through the ecology communities she was a part of. Since 2014, she has been organising NVC trainings in cities throughout Turkey. She was one of the organisers of the first International Intensive Training (IIT) in Turkey in 2016. Özgen has been offering online short-term and long-term programs to Turkish-speaking participants living in different parts of the world since 2018.

In the past four years, the Nonviolent Communication Annual Programme, which she prepared with her fellow trainers, has reached more than 100 teachers. As of 2022, they have been supporting five teachers among these trainees through mentoring and they have been organising NVC in Schools-Experience Exchange Meetings with teachers. In 2019, Özgen completed the certification process and became a Certified Trainer, and is now one of the 11 certified trainers in Turkey. From 2019-22, she was a consultant for a company in Germany with the aim of implementing Nonviolent Communication in organisations. With the knowledge and experience she gained there, she continues to provide consultancy and trainings in various large-scale companies in Turkey.

She launched the NVC Online Practice Evenings in 2019, with the intention of establishing nonviolent systems in the collaborating communities. With the intention of practicing NVC, these evenings have hosted more than 5,000 people from different segments of society, with a special focus to be accessible for everyone. To date, 12 different people have contributed in this organization and experienced NVC in organizations. Furthermore, this organisation has brought together more than 15 trainers from abroad with the community in Turkey. These new trainers support Turkish NVC community in gaining new learning and new experiences. 

In 2020, she co-founded the NVC Collection publishing house and has been voluntarily managing its financial affairs. The Collection has published 3 books and 7 booklets and brings together the books on NVC published in Turkey. Özgen continues to learn NVC and to enrich her knowledge and experience with online and face-to-face trainings. Most recently, she attended the IIT in Germany in 2022, with 65 participants from 18 different countries and 5 trainers from 3 different countries, adding another experience to her learning journey. Providing mediation support to parties in conflict, Özgen also supports individuals with empathic coaching and organisations with corporate trainings. With her focus on building Nonviolent Systems, introducing Nonviolence into collaborations and all organisations, creating awareness of power and privileges, bringing peace to /improving peace in romantic relationships and facilitating cultural change in learning systems, Özgen lives in Germany with her husband and her cats, while her heart is always beating in her home in rural Çanakkale. Learn more about Özgen.

Begum Kecici portrait

Organizer: Begüm Keçici (Turkey)

Begüm has worked in the International Financial Reporting field for 14 years, and is a permaculture designer who hasworked with communities who support community supported agriculture and ecological food. She is a mother of two children, a son and a daughter.

Begüm began her involvement with Nonviolent Communication after she gave birth to her second child, and witnessed behavioral change in the elder child. By that time, she discovered that NVC was her healing field rather than her children’s. With the help of NVC, she empowered to be centered in herself and to connect with others and herself empathically. She has met with her "self-actualization power” in NVC fields.




The cost of this training includes two components: 1) Tuition; and 2) Room and Board.

1. Tuition (USD):

However, if you are a full-time resident of Turkey or any of the countries listed below, you qualify for the regional tuition fee:

The countries that this tuition fee applies to are:

  • Armenia
  • Azerbaijan
  • Bulgaria
  • Cyprus
  • Georgia
  • Greece
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Syria
  • Turkey

Note: The regional tuition fee discount cannot be combined with any of the discounts listed below.

Additional tuition discounts (you may apply only one of these discounts):

  • 10% if you participated in (and paid for) a previous intensive training with CNVC
  • 10% if you have been a Supporting Member of CNVC for 6 months or more.
  • 15% for registered Certification Candidates
  • 25% if you are an active Certified Trainer with CNVC - Note, that there is also a limited number of tuition-free spaces available for Certified Trainers, granted by a committee. For more information, email us at [email protected].

Financial assistance: 

Instructions will be provided on how to request Financial assistance after you submit the pre-registration form.

After applying the available discounts, if you are not able to afford the tuition, you can request financial assistance to further reduce your tuition fee (Note: We do not offer assistance for Room and Board, which is a direct expense for us to the venue). We have a limited amount of financial assistance available and we prioritize people who meet one or more of the following criteria:

  1. Actively collaborating with others in the NVC network
  2. Can use what they learn in this training to make an impact such as in education, government, environmental sustainability, equity and inclusion, or with an NGO or community-based organization.
  3. From a region that has fewer in-person NVC trainings.
  4. Part of an economic system that offers less access to financial resources.
  5. Come from a disadvantaged group (race, ethnicity, origin, religion, gender identity, class)
  6. Willing to search for other sources of financial support such as their workplace, family, or organizations they are involved in (in order to be in partnership with us about finding the resources to host this training while including as many people as possible)

Note: You can request financial assistance after filling out the pre-registration form.

Group Turkey

2. Room and Board (USD): convert to your currency

  •  $990 - Single Room (private bathroom)
  •  $675 - Double Room (private bathroom) - share your room with 1 other person
  •  $450 - Triple Room (private bathroom) - share your room with 2 other people
  •  $405 - Quadruple room (private bathroom) - share your room with 3 other people
  •  $315 - Dorm (shared bathroom)
  •  $315 - Tent (bring your own)


  • Room and Board prices include your room and all meals throughout the event beginning with dinner the first day and ending with lunch the final day.
  • Rooms and types of rooms are limited and are available on a first-come, first-serve basis; we encourage you to book your accommodation as soon as you register to increase the likelihood that you can get your preferred room type.
  • If you choose a double, triple, or quadruple room, you can choose your own roommate(s) or we can assign them based upon any preferences you have.
  • Bed linen will be provided, but please bring your own towel.


Cancellation Policy:

A. If we cancel:

If we cancel this training, you receive a 100% refund (or if you prefer, you can apply your payment to another CNVC intensive training within 2 years).

B. If you cancel:

Through 06-Sep-2023, you have two options:

  1. Transfer 100% of your payment to a future CNVC intensive training within 2 years; or
  2. Receive a refund minus a nonrefundable $150 tuition deposit

Between 07-Sep-2023 and 02-Oct-2023 you have two options:

  1. Transfer 75% of your payment to a future CNVC training (we retain 25%); or
  2. Receive a 50% refund (we retain 50%).

Beginning 03-Oct-2023 no refunds or transfers are available.

Note: Any refunds due will be issued within 2 weeks after the cancellation.

Regarding Cancellation and Refund policy of room & board, please contact the local organizers.

Finally, before this training begins, we will ask you to make several agreements to create an environment that is safe and supportive for everyone, and that supports you in making choices for your own well being. To preview these agreements, go to this page.



Stoa Venue


Stoa Center for Body Arts and Studies (Beden Sanatları ve Araştırmaları Merkezi)

Address: Sirince Mahallesi, Kayserkaya Sokak No:20, Selcuk, Izmir, 35290, Turkey

Stoa was established in Şirince, a village near the city of İzmir. Şirince is a unique Aegean village with its nature and architectural texture. A corner of paradise, 20 minutes from the ancient city of Ephesus and the House of Virgin Mary. With these features, Stoa will be the perfect host for anyone who comes to study and to seek seclusion.

The name of the venue "Stoa" is a word identified with a tradition of philosophy that has thousands of years of history and is still relevant. While we do not claim to be Stoic, we believe that we are making progress by adopting many important principles of Stoicism, sometimes without even realizing it. Chief among these is that the Stoic tradition is a quest for the good life.

According to this tradition, the establishment of a good life involves a search for a stillness that wants to go beyond conflicts. Serenity, on the other hand, according to the Stoics, is nothing but living in harmony with nature in a broad sense, because nature is a perfect design. 




Travel Visa:


If you are traveling to Turkey from another country, you might need to obtain a visa. Please consult the Turkish Embassy in your country for details. If you need an invitation letter from us in order to apply for your visa, please email us.


The nearest airport is Izmir Adnan Menderes (ADB), which is 60 km by road from the venue. From the airport take the train İZBAN to Tepeköy (about 15 minutes). At Tepeköy, change for the regional train to Selçuk. They run every one and half hours (here is a timetable). When you arrive at Selçuk, walk to Selçuk Bus Station (appr. 650 m, 8 minutes) and take a bus to Sirince (see below for more information).

Another alternative way to reach the venue is organizing a private transport from the airport to the venue. Last Minute Tourism, one of the private companies that transport passengers between the airport and Selçuk (you can call the number 00 90 256 614 55 55 to make your reservation).


break time

Here is the location in Google Maps. From İzmir to the venue:

  1. Get on İzmir Çevre Yolu/O-30/E87 in Kazımdirik from D300
  2. Follow E87 to İzmir-Aydın Otoyolu Belevi Bağlantısı in Belevi. Exit from İzmir-Aydın Otoyolu/O-31/E87
  3. Take Değirmen Boğazı Sk in Şirince.
  4. The distance between Şirince and Stoa is 800 m. Within walking distance. There are signs along the way.

From İzmir Atatürk Menderes Havalimanı to the venue:

  1. Get on Menderes-İzmir-Aydın Yolu/D550 in Sevgi from Adnan Menderes Airport Exit (Havaalanı Çıkışı)
  2. Follow Menderes-İzmir-Aydın Yolu/D550, İzmir-Aydın Otoyolu/O-31/E87 and D550 to Şht. Pilot Tğm. Deniz Taylan Cd. in Selçuk
  3. Take Değirmen Boğazı Sk in Şirince.
  4. The distance between Şirince and Stoa is 800 m. Within walking distance. There are signs along the way.


There are several different bus terminals and bus stops in Turkey and here you can search for a ticket. You can choose your departure station (Europe or Anatolia) and your destination will be Selçuk (İzmir). From Selçuk to Sirince, you take a minibus. See below for more information.

Bus from Selçuk to Sirince:
In October, the first bus will leave at 7:40 am and the last bus will leave at 6:30 pm. Minibus runs every 30 minutes and the voyage between Selçuk-Sirince takes 40 minutes. The distance between Sirince and Stoa is 800 m (within walking distance). There are signs along the way. 


 Covid-19 Considerations

We care for your health and safety, whilst valuing choice and freedom. So we are doing our best to form a clear and inclusive health and safety policy and measures, doing anything in our power to organize this safe and legal, live, in-person event. The IIT organizer will research and stay up-to-date on any Covid-related regulations and protocols for Turkey, if applicable.

CNVC and the organizer will create Covid-related policies and protocols within 4 weeks of the start date for what happens if anyone at the event tests positive for Covid and/or exhibits Covid-related symptoms (including what happens with testing). Covid-19 information pages for more local information:

  • In case a guest is diagnosed with COVID-19 during their stay for any reason, this person shall stay in the isolation room designated by the hotel, shall not leave this room and shall not accept outside visitors.
  • Room and housekeeping services shall be provided to the guest, who are diagnosed with COVID-19, in accordance with the accommodation contract for the time period specified in the contract.
  • In the event that a guest is isolated following a diagnosis of COVID-19, the conditions of the accommodation contract signed by the guest can be extended and the guest may be subject to additional charges due to the isolation rooms that will be provided in addition to the accommodation contract and any additional expenses (medicine, transfer to hospital, special diet, doctor and patient care support) are paid by the guest.
  • By request, Zoom connection to the sessions will be provided by the organizers.