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Training Feedback from Naming and Couples Celebrants

Absolutely brilliant venue and accommodation. Venue staff were so friendly and nothing was too much trouble. Food was amazing!! Course content – first class! Handouts, presentations etc. very professional. Faultless. Tutors- amazing!! Thank you so much. I highly recommend this course. Caroline Clark – January 2024

This was an excellent course, so worthwhile. It’s brilliantly constructed with so many opportunities to practice that were incredibly valuable. The tutors are warm, knowledgeable and experienced. They had a wealth of ideas to impart and were superb at giving feedback to enhance practice. Tania Beard – January 2024

Our tutors were incredible, and I can’t believe how much we got done, but always with tutor and fellow trainee support. What a lovely group of people! This was the best (and hardest) training I have ever done,  but so excited for my future in this capacity.

Thank you for all your encouragement and wonderful training – as well as aftercare. Debra Massey – Jan 24

I cannot recommend Civil Ceremonies enough for any service leaver looking for a celebrant course. They are a well established, very professional training provider who understand the ELCAS process well. Their training methods and content are thorough and easy to access for learners and they demonstrated a good understanding of supporting learners with diverse needs. The distance learning is flexible so easy to work around resettlement commitments and the residential offers great accommodation and food. Gillian Charlton – May 2023 (ELCAS)

This week I found a voice I’ve never had before. A way to silence the nerves and speak authentic words I’d written with pride. Thought challenging at times, this course has been a transformative joy! Lucy Fox – May 2022

I really want to say a huge ‘thank you’ to you and all your team for the excellent help and support over the past months. I was constantly impressed by the professionalism and friendliness of everyone. From the outset Karen in the office was so helpful and everyone I spoke to made me feel I had made the right choice with Civil Ceremonies.

The distance learning modules were rigorous and challenging but once I got going, I really enjoyed the work and learned so much!

Despite a few personal setbacks I also found the residential week really inspiring. You and all your team put so much energy and enthusiasm into the week and made me feel so well supported. What progress we all made in such a short time!

Now I am back home, and have made a start on my website and logo designs. The excellent resources that you provided will make the task of setting up my new business much less intimidating! And the thought that you are there for help and support if needed is a real ‘comfort blanket’.

I started out wondering if it was sensible to retrain at my age! But ended up feeling sure that it was the right decision. And I can’t wait to get going! So, thank you! Julia Marshall – May 2022

Thank you so much for everything you all did for us last week.   I truly had a wonderful time.  I didn’t expect to meet such great people, I really do feel I have new friends in my life. I have been singing Civil Ceremonies’ praises since I got back.  Honestly Anne, the quality in the training you provide is second to none.  It has been life changing for me. Kelly Nicolas – May 2022

I love how practical this was from the first session, with us practicing symbolic actions and delivering poems and scripts. Feedback from tutors was consistently useful and constructive – I feel they had our best interests at heart. Writing scripts, role plays and filmed deliveries were such valuable experiences; I learned a huge amount from this. I loved this course. All the feedback I received from you was extremely practical and helpful, and I feel I learned a huge amount in a very short space of time. I am very appreciative of the amount of work and energy that went into the preparation and delivery of the course; I now feel very well equipped to move forward as a celebrant and am very excited to get started. I also wanted to say all the hotel staff were very friendly and helpful and the standard of cleanliness was extremely high. Sophie Howell-Peak – January 22

It is very difficult to put into words just how effective the course has been. In fact “effective” doesn’t do it justice. It was amazing. The distance learning modules were stimulating and thought-provoking, well set out and easy to engage with. I was already impressed, and then the residential training took it through the roof.

Yes, it was hard work and it was intense, but it was also everything that it needed to be. I’ve been teaching since 1995 and to be honest I was fully prepared for a death-by-powerpoint onslaught. It was nothing of the sort – and this a credit to you all. To be trained by individuals with such expertise, charisma and (most importantly in my case!) patience was a real privilege. I know exactly how rare those qualities are in a classroom! Of course I was stressed at times and I would have dearly loved more time to prepare the ceremonies I was asked to write, but – and this is the genius bit – I was forced to get them done and to perform them in front of others. It means I now know important things-

1) I can do it

2) I can do it under pressure

3) When I come to do it for real I can do it even better

I feel more than ready, I feel confident and I feel I want to get started right away. These things may sound trite and trivial but they’re really not. To move someone like myself from a point where I think I can probably give it a go, to the point where I am desperate to start is massive. It may well change my life. Thank you for a such a special week. Matt Macauley – August 2021

The course was insightful, fascinating, fun, really fast paced and intense. Trainers were fantastic. Karen Cassidy – May 2021

Experienced facilitators, relevant material and robust working framework. Denise Milani – May 2021

Oh my! What can I say apart from a huge thank you to all of the tutors and speakers. A full on week, probably one of the best courses I have ever been on. I have never felt so supported, guided and uplifted. The resources, content and information your given is so valuable. Walking away from this course I feel so confident that I could now go straight into the celebrant role. Sonia Kemp – May 2021

Thank you so much for such a fabulous course. It is intense to say the least but packed full of amazing resources, insight and information. Sharon – May 2021

A great course! Huge amounts to learn. Samantha Steed – Aug 2020

Feedback was absolutely incredible, the time and effort the team spent on reviewing videos etc. was really appreciated, the feedback helped me improve. Yvette Squire – Aug 2020

This course has given me structure, discipline and organisation. I‘ve found my voice. I’ve had fun. The venue is amazing. The course was challenging but I embraced it, and within 5 days I can deliver a wedding and a naming ceremony using the foundation that has been given to me. Thank you to all the tutors for their encouragement and for believing in me – Dinah Pemberton – March 2020

I really enjoyed the course. I learned an enormous amount and I feel I have grown in confidence. I also felt that my tutors were incredibly supportive and would continue to be so. The course is densely packed, with much to learn and sometimes I found the deadlines tight and the days long, but to be fair, given the time we have I don’t know how this could be improved. I am incredibly proud to have been part of this learning experience. The people I have met are now friends and they are all exceptionally talented. Thank you so much for helping me achieve my goal – to make my dream of becoming a Celebrant a reality – Dee Dunphy – July 2019

Thank you for an amazing experience. We are lucky to have a training resource such as Civil Ceremonies, especially at this point in time as the law is catching up with the 21st century! I’m not alone in thinking we are at a juncture within our profession as celebrants. It feels like a window of opportunity to position ourselves in the best possible place. This I believe wouldn’t be possible without the qualification and expertise you provide at Civil Ceremonies. Yourself and the tutors on the course were amazing!! You are all so supportive and knowledgeable. Thank you again for an experience “worth remembering” and one that in fact I will never forget – Mike Norbury – July 2019

Learnt A LOT! Felt incredibly supported by everyone – all tutors and my fellow participants. Will be super super proud if I pass. Loved the writing part, so reaffirmed my wish to try and make a success in this world. Thank you for everything – Jane Briers – March 2019

I cannot believe how much I have learnt. I have gone from dreading writing up a script to quite enjoying it. The trainers have been quite exceptional. I feel I can say this with a degree of professionalism as I am a trainer. Tutors were kind, thoughtful and very understanding. Thank you so much for quite an exceptional week. I have learnt more than I ever thought possible and age is no barrier! Angie Phillips – February 2019.

I just wanted to let you know how wonderful it was to attend the Naming and Couples course. It challenged me so much and bought me out of my comfort zone. I dug deep and surprised myself at what I achieved. This I put down to the expert tuition from yourself and the others, which was delivered beautifully. The coursework prior to attending the residential course made me think and I have learned so much from every part of the course. This qualification is going to change so much for me. My absolute sincere thanks for the opportunity. I am going to embrace being a Celebrant wholeheartedly! – Bev Bennett – January 2019

Dear Anne, Jill & Emily (and all the other members who make your training so brilliant!) I completed my Couples and Naming course with you back in October ‘18. Whilst I found the course hard going at the time I left feeling “ready” and knowledgeable about the new career path I had chosen.

I can now tell you that I have led my first baby naming and my first wedding celebration in the last few weeks and I loved every minute of it. I wrote and delivered both with a confidence that I can only put down to your terrific training! I cannot tell you how delighted I am to have 3 more ceremonies (which I am currently writing) and another 2 consultations in the diary for ceremonies this summer.

A huge thank you to you all for everything that you do! – Kelly Hawes – October 2018

I am quite sure that we will all be better, more confident celebrants knowing that you and Civil Ceremonies are there to help and support us. I’m still grinning from ear to ear and can’t wait to get cracking. Debbie Harbotts – July 2017.

I have loved this course! The trainers are so supportive and professional. I personally loved the structure of the course, it is very well thought out. I feel equipped to begin conducting Celebrant work immediately. I am raring to go! Rachel McCallum – October 2017.

I have really enjoyed the course and the resources, practical demonstrations and role play have been very helpful. Course resources are brilliant, everything we need to get started. The whole course was well put together and the role playing and delivery exercises were invaluable. Feedback was very good and constructive. Thank you all for a brilliant week! – Kailah Eglington Oct 2017

The course delivered on all levels. I turned up nervous and wondering if the work was right for me – then left feeling informed, enthusiastic and confident that and that I could go straight out and meet couples, create their ceremony and deliver it. The information was all there and tutors answered questions all through the week, even out of hours. It was nice to have them at the venue eating with us and being around. The week was intensive and tiring but I cannot fault this course, the venue, content or delivery. I chose this course because of its high standards. Deborah Tomlinson – April 2017.

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        IT Skills you will need both during your training and working as a celebrant

        Do you have the following skills:

        1. Ability in creating, naming, using, saving and retrieving files and folders.
        2. Familiarity with using your version of Word (or similar software).
        3. Understanding of toolbars and icons.
        4. Ability to copy and paste sections of text.
        5. An understanding of ‘track changes’ and how to use this function.
        6. Ability to bold, underline and italicise text.
        7. Be able to change font type, size and colour.
        8. Ability to centre text in the middle of a page and right and left justify it.
        9. Be able to alter line spacing in a document and insert a page break.
        10. Be able to use the undo and redo functions.
        11. Understand how the tab key works.
        12. Ability to use headers and footers, bullet points and numbering
        13. Understanding of the difference between ‘Save’ and ‘Save As’.

        If you said ‘yes’ to all of the above then you have good basic skills.

        If you have answered ‘no’ to any of the above then you will need to improve your basic skills before starting the course. This can be done in a few hours by using one or more of the free online tutorials available on the internet.