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Over 3,000 participants confirm growing success of Family Mediation Week initiative

New figures show the growing success of Family Mediation Week, with well over 3,000 people having participated in a series of webinars and face-to-face meetings held during the January 2024 event, almost doubling the corresponding figure for 2023.

Family Mediation Week 2024 events, organised by The Family Mediation Council (“the FMC”), provided information and support to mediators, lawyers, divorce coaches, financial experts, social workers, and other professionals working with separated families. Further webinars during the 22 – 26 January initiative helped members of the public learn about how family mediation can support them.

Among the most popular webinars were those focusing on:

  • Everything lawyers always wanted to know about mediation (but were afraid to ask)
  • How family mediation can work when dealing with high conflict personalities
  • Divorce coaching, mediation and legal advice: How they can work together
  • A conversation with former BBC News Presenter Joanna Gosling about changing her career to become a mediator
  • Pension matters within mediation: why educating clients is key to helping them move forward
  • Self-care when managing and working with conflict
  • MED ARB: Practice & Procedure
  • How we can utilise neutrals within mediation
  • A launch event including an address from Mrs Justice Knowles, Lead Judge for Private Law and Domestic Abuse, Family Division, Royal Courts of Justice.

For those who missed any of the live events, recordings of the webinars are available on the FMC website, clocking up hundreds of views already.

“The aim of Family Mediation Week is to further raise the profile of family mediation and the numerous benefits it can bring,” said Alison Bull, FMC Board member.

Positive impact for separated families

“The participation figures indicate the growing success of Family Mediation Week, and we look forward to the positive impact this increased understanding of the process will have for separating and separated families across England and Wales, as well as increased opportunities for mediators, lawyers, financial and therapeutic professionals,” she added.

“This year’s event included a range of sessions geared towards professionals working with separated families, as well as helping members of the public understand more about how family mediation can help them shape their family’s future. There were also a number of well attended in-person networking meetings.

“We are grateful to all those who took part, and we say a huge ‘thank you’ to all those who organised these excellent events.”

Alison Bull added that plans for January 2025’s Family Mediation Week are now under way, and hopes that by then the Ministry of Justice will have implemented its expressed commitment to making early legal advice available for families in its consultation response on “Supporting earlier resolution of private family law arrangements”.

Underlining the growth in the popularity and influence of Family Mediation Week, the corresponding 2023 figures showed that some 1,600 people took part.

Family Mediation Week takes place in January, sometimes dubbed ‘divorce month’ as it is a period which reportedly sees rising numbers of couples making enquiries about separation and divorce.