Coach Training Program Frequently Asked Questions

What is the fee to become a certified Community Heart & Soul Coach?

The fee for enrolling in the 12-week Virtual Training Series for Level 1 certification is $1495. All course materials (print and online) are provided as part of the training program fee. For more information, see page 10 of the Coach Manual.

How do Coaches find communities who are seeking a Heart & Soul Coach?

Coaches directly promote and market the Community Heart & Soul model to prospective communities. In addition, inquiries received by the Community Heart & Soul organization are shared with Heart & Soul Coaches based on geography. For coaches who offer virtual coaching, leads/inquiries will be shared as well.

How do communities identify a Community Heart & Soul Coach to work with?

Communities can access a list of certified Coaches on the Community Heart & Soul website:

How many hours per month is a typical coaching commitment?

Over the two-year Community Heart & Soul process, certified Coaches dedicate an average of 150-200 hours per Heart & Soul community. See page 11 of the Coach Manual for more information on the time commitment to coach a Heart & Soul town.

What guides a Heart & Soul Coach’s work?

Coaches sign a Coaching and Training Agreement that guides their relationship with the Community Heart & Soul organization both during the training program and while a Coach is working with communities after certification. A copy of this agreement is available upon request. Coaches must renew their Coach certification every two years. See page 11 of the Coach Manual for more information on Community Heart & Soul Coach certification renewal.

Who usually pays Heart & Soul Coaches for their coaching service?

Heart & Soul Coaches contract with the sponsoring entity (city government, nonprofit, foundation, etc.).

What is the ideal population range for Heart & Soul communities? Has the Heart and Soul model ever been applied to a “community” other than a town or municipality?

Community Heart & Soul is designed for small cities and towns with populations between 2,500 and 30,000. The model is not used in large urban centers or in neighborhoods. The process can be initiated by local residents, government officials, or community-based organizations. Multi-town, regional, and county efforts have embraced Community Heart & Soul when a joint effort was desired and the total population fell between 2,500-30,000.

How does Community Heart & Soul interface with long range and comprehensive planning activities that may be underway in a community?

Community Heart & Soul does not replace other community development programs or planning processes that a town is engaged in. Community Heart & Soul complements other community initiatives (economic development planning, comprehensive planning, Main Street, etc.) and becomes the community engagement arm for other programs and planning.

Can a community focus on a predetermined topic or theme during their Community Heart & Soul process?

Community Heart & Soul is a bottom-up, resident-driven process that determines a town’s future based on what matters most to residents in their communities. The strength of the model lies in the design: there is no particular agenda being promoted, other than a genuine desire to improve community relationships, planning, and collaborative decision-making through engaging in the process. Community Heart & Soul must not be driven by any political, social or religious agenda.