Kilkenny County Council - Migrant Integration Strategy
Barncat was commissioned to review Kilkenny's former integration strategy, and to develop an updated one in 2020. While the methodology proposed was similar to that developed for Barncat's similar work with Wicklow County Council, it was modified to better suit the local context. Over the course of 2020, Barncat conducted a review and SWOT analysis of the former strategy, developed and analysed an online survey, available in four languages, interviewed a wide range of service providers and migrant representatives, and ran a series of online focus groups on particular thematic issues.
What the client said:
Thanks again for everything- you have been truly amazing to work with – like having a really great colleague. You have also found a way to manage Zoom focus group meetings in a way that encourages participation and allows for the diverse views of the group to be heard and recorded.
Lindsey Butler, Community Section, Kilkenny County Council
What I learned:
Like many facilitators, I'm sure, I was sceptical of the potential of online tools to replace face to face group work, particularly when it comes to reaching harder to reach participants. However, I did lots of research, participated in peer led practice sessions, and even enlisted my friends and family as Zoom facilitation guinea pigs. I was pleasantly surprised by the end result. We got excellent participation- childcare, for example, is less of an issue when you schedule a focus group online- and there are even some advantages to facilitating online over in-person - for example, using the chat function can be a great icebreaker for participants who are timid about speaking up in the group. In post-Covid times, we now have the luxury of choice- I would always still prefer face to face for any kind of larger teambuilding or strategy day, whereas online can work well for prep and follow up meetings, or for focused team working sessions.