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From a storm to a storm-in-a-teacup

A story of Local Response by Virginie-Anne from Le Pont du Tamarinier

My name is Virginie-Anne, I am French, and I have lived here in Mauritius for a few years. My husband and I moved here after he found a job and so I followed him and took up residence here, but as he was an expat I was no longer able to work as a sophrologist, my profession. And as I looked for avenues to invest myself in, I decided to start support Le Pont du Tamarinier and their work.

SALT has brought real change to this place and the people here, I can tell you that much! Sometimes I think it really is magical… In fact I think the greatest change happened within the organization itself. SALT has given us tools and a posture that helps us deal with conflict within our staff.

Before SALT was introduced, when there were problems and tensions, things would go haywire really fast, or they would be kept quiet and keep building up. Then we all received training in SALT, and we started applying it in the workplace, reminding our colleagues of their strengths, building our dream, feeling united by our common aspirations.

Today, of course there are still tensions and problems between staff members. But when it happens, we call for “a SALT”, and in this place of honest and non-judgmental sharing, we are able to hear others’ opinions spoken with clarity, and express ourselves confidently, and thus we explore the conflict together and find peaceful ways to resolve it.”

“When we strived for open, respectful and assertive communication with our peers, then we gave and received support which led to further sharing, growing and learning.”