REAL Communication Workshops

Getting REAL

Our award-winning interactive and experiential REAL Communication workshops are designed to complement mandatory training and onsite experience for health & social care staff, as well as medical, nursing and physiotherapy and OT students.

 The experiences naturally lead to further activities, such as life history and other themed projects.


We measure impact and learning outcomes through detailed evaluation.

Workshop Option 1

Half day


A REAL Communication half day workshop lasts three hours and gives participants an overview of communication as a therapeutic activity, including empathic engagement, active listening, how memory works, reminiscence as theory and practice, the importance of life story and guidance on using the Many Happy Returns Chatterbox cards. 


Participants play brief interactive exercises and games and discuss their outcome.

Workshop Option 2

One day

Our one-day REAL Communication workshops are very popular, focusing on Reminiscence, Empathic engagement, Active listening, Life story and conversation as a valuable – and vital therapeutic care activity. 

Care staff are encouraged to re-consider what good care is and how it can be improved through better communication.

Participants work in pairs and small groups for part of the workshop with feedback and reflective discussion. Supplementary notes and a certificate of attendance support the experience. 

Workshop Option 3

Three-day workshops

The three, one-day workshop package includes supporting materials and fun 'homework' assignments. Workshops are scheduled at ten-day intervals to give participants opportunities to absorb and practice their learning from the sessions and provide feedback. 


The three workshops give participants in-depth knowledge and experience of Reminiscence, Empathic engagement, Active listening and Life story as an essential therapeutic activity of good care. Exercises, games, reflection, discussion and self-valuation are built into each day. 

One month later, a fourth session is used to consider the learning outcomes and impact of learning and to plan subsequent related activities for the staff.

Think Be Do


Six-hour workshops broadly based on Action Learning, challenge senior staff to consider how they think, how that thinking affects their 'present-ness' and in turn, how that causes them to engage with everyone living, dying, working in or visiting their place of work.

Using reflective discussion, underpinned by the Senses Framework, the day is interspersed with novel, fun games and interactivity, giving participants the chance to step back and step out of their comfort zones to:

  • consider more deeply the competing stresses of care settings
  • recognise the worth of the work they do
  • understand better why they do it
  • develop greater self-awareness and
  • recognise the benefits to all of improving their practice 
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