Personal Support Network Facilitation

Ending isolation through personal support networks.

Upcoming course dates:

October 7th to November 17th, 2024


1 seat: $300 CAD per seat

5 seats $1200 CAD (buy 4 get 1 free)

*If you are unable to afford the cost of this course please see our workshop inclusion fund below.

About the Course

Finding friendship and making personal connections in one’s community can present challenges for us all under the most robust of conditions; for those who are isolated due to disability, illness or old age, developing a personal support network can seem insurmountable.  At the heart of Plan Institute is the belief that in creating a caring community with the knowledgeable assistance of a Network Facilitator, a person in isolation can have an active social network playing an important role in bringing resilience, purpose and joy to an otherwise solitary life.

Building on over 25 years of experience in facilitating hundreds of personal support networks for people living in isolation, this online course uses PLAN’s proven approach to provide participants with the knowledge and skills necessary to become a Personal Support Network Facilitator. As a Network Facilitator, you will have the tools to re-chart a life of isolation towards a life at the centre of an active and caring personal support network.

This course was designed by Vickie Cammack, Plan Institute and PLAN co-founder, and the Plan Institute team.

This course consists of four easy to follow modules that are designed to be both practical and inspirational:
  • Understanding Personal Support Network facilitation
  • Exploration in developing a Personal Support Network
  • Formation and maintenance of a network
  • Addressing challenges and building confidence
The 25 – 30 hours of course instruction includes:
  • Comprehensive, accessible, self-paced, online training. This means that there are no set times in which you must log in to the course, but can complete it at your own pace, within the 6-week window.
  • Overview of the principles and theory of Personal Support Network facilitation
  • How to develop a network including the three development phases
  • How to maintain a network
  • Certificate of Completion for those who successfully complete the course requirements

Who should take this course

  • This course is designed primarily for individuals working with or living with people who are socially isolated including seniors, people with disabilities and/or chronic health challenges, and youth.
  • However, the course is open to anyone, including family members and caregivers who have a loved-one with a disability.


Is there mandatory check in points and course deadlines for this course?
No, there are no mandatory check in points or deadlines associated with this course besides the start and end date. The learner has 6-weeks to complete this course. It is up to the learner to decide when they will sign on and complete the assignments.

Can I take this course even though I am outside of Canada?
Yes! We have had people attend the course from the USA, Australia, South America and many more countries around the world. Since there is no mandatory check ins/deadlines the course can be taken in any time zone.

What happens if something comes up and I can’t finish the course?
Depending on the reason, we can offer the learner an extension or transfer to the next course. This is based on each unique situation and requires conversation with the facilitator and course administrator.


1 seat: $300.00 per seat
5 seats $1200.00 (buy 4 get 1 free)

Workshop Inclusion Fund

Plan Institute endeavours to ensure full and equitable access to all of our programs, supports and services with as few barriers as possible. While our Personal Support Network Facilitation course is already significantly subsidized, we realize that the cost may still present a barrier for some. Our inclusion fund was set up to address this need.

If you are unable to cover the cost of this course, you may apply to receive partial funding. Please note that this fund is intended for low-income individuals who would otherwise not be able to attend. While we do not require proof of income we ask for honesty when assessing your situation.

Eligibility: Individuals with a disability or individuals who support a person with a disability are eligible to apply. If you are requesting a reduced fee on behalf of an organization, please contact separately.

Bursary Available: We typically offer a partial bursary for this course. If you are approved, the maximum cost of the course will be reduced to $150. Full bursaries will be considered based on individual circumstances and available funds.

Apply for the bursary here.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at or call 604-439-9566 ext. 121.


Rebecca Pauls

Rebecca PaulsRebecca is the Director of PLAN. She is an enthusiastic and creative facilitator with a broad range of experiences in community development and supporting people with disabilities. She has worked in various parts of Canada and internationally in places like Ethiopia, Zimbabwe and Guatemala. Rebecca is passionate about seeing the unique gifts that each of us have and is convinced that our communities will be stronger, safer and more vibrant when each of us is contributing and sharing our gifts. She has a deep appreciation for the roles that family and friends play in our lives and is committed to connecting people with other people and places around them.

Shelley Nessman

Shelley Nessman

Shelley’s passion is supporting people to discover, nurture and share their gifts, skills, and abilities. Her experience as a facilitator and planner has helped her to understand that when a person and their network combine their dreams with a plan for action – anything is possible!

Two significant experiences changed everything about the way Shelley views “the work”. First was an opportunity early in her career to be trained by Jack Pearpoint and Marsha Forrest as a PATH facilitator (followed by life altering training from Dave and Fay Wetherow). Second has been the privilege of sharing her home with people who experience disability. Life sharing has been a deep personal learning experience that shows up in everything she does. In the past 3 years, Shelley created her own consulting business “In the Company of Others” and has been privileged to work in BC, Ontario, Australia and the US.


“There were so many “a-ha” moments that came together for me through this coursework. It’s exactly what I needed as a parent and as a person who works with youth and adults with disabilities to move forward more strategically to develop relationships.”

“Thank you for your wonderful support and I learned SO SO much that I truly hope will help the people I provide support for and empower them with rights to make their own life choices whenever can! And supporting them to live outside of the disability box if they so chose.”

“Thank you very much for all your help and support throughout the course! I really enjoyed the material and feel strongly that I will be more effective in my job for having learned it.” 

“Your supportive guidance and reflection has been so helpful and thought-provoking.  I am looking forward to trying to put what I have learned into practice, both in my work and in my life in general.   I would love to maintain this perspective, always striving to listen and view people as the sum of their gifts and talents.  I know some days that will feel easier than others!”

For more information, please email or call 604-439-9566.