Telling and Talking Workshops

Workshops for heterosexual and lesbian couples and single women who are parents of DC children aged 0-7 - Open to all members and non-members.

Two couples’ experience:

'A huge thank you for Saturday's workshop.  It was immensely useful and so good to feel able to talk about things in a safe environment.  Both Jim and I feel more confident now in starting the telling process to our was brilliant to have time to focus on the issues and actually think things nice to know we are not alone' 

'Money well spent in relation to looking after my son's well-being, self-esteem and mental health'

One single woman's experience:

'It was great to meet others who have undergone what I did to have a child.  I feel much better about dealing with questions as they arrive.  A great opportunity to network with others who share my concerns, hopes and fears!'


Who are they for?

The workshops are for all parents of donor-conceived children aged 0-7 years.  They are equally appropriate whether you had treatment in the UK or abroad, with a known, identifiable or anonymous donor or if your treatment involved surrogacy.  You may be wondering how to start talking to your child about their donor-conceived origins, or you may have already begun this process and would like to explore what may come up in the future.

Separate workshops for heterosexual couples, single women and lesbian couples are held wherever possible.  If the number of people booked falls below a minimum for the workshop to be effective, we may combine solo mums and lesbian couples.  If this decision is made all workshop participants will be informed in advance

If you are a heterosexual couple, experience tells us that you will get the most from the workshop if you attend after your child is born.  If you are a single or lesbian woman, we recognise that your experiences are different from the time your pregnancy becomes public knowledge, and that attending our workshop even before your baby is born might be helpful for you. All of our single women and lesbian couples’ workshops have a small number of places for pregnant women. If you would like further information, please ring the office to find out more.

If you are part of a couple, we strongly recommend you attend together.  If single, you can come alone or bring a family member or friend.  The maximum number on each workshop is 18.

Who runs the workshops?

Two facilitators run each workshop; a man and a woman for heterosexual couples and two women from solo mum or lesbian couple families for those family types.  All facilitators are long-standing members of DCN, have donor-conceived children themselves, either from treatment in the UK or abroad, and in addition bring wider relevant professional and personal experience.  

What are the workshops about?

The workshops provide a comfortable and confidential space to explore personal feelings and experiences, and how these impact on how we share information about donor conception with our children and with family and friends.  We look at why it's important to feel comfortable with talking about this subject, and look at our hopes and anxieties about it.  To enable you to grow in confidence there are opportunities to practise what you might say in these situations.  You will also be able to watch a DVD featuring families speaking about their experiences of talking about donor conception. Many participants choose to share their email addresses or phone numbers with each other at the end of the workshop and remain in touch.

You will receive an email pack of information in advance of the workshop.

Where and when are they?

The workshops are held on Saturdays from 9.30-4.30 so they are convenient for most working parents.  Many are held at a venue near Kings Cross in London, with others taking place in regions across the UK and in Dublin. 

How much do they cost and what's included?

The 2017 cost for DCN members 

                                    -single person  £175 or £145 early bird*

                                    -couple             £310 or £260 early bird*

                       non DCN members

                                     -single person £190 or £160 early bird*

                                     -couple            £340 or £290 early bird*

* early bird is one month before the workshop date

We do not seek to make a profit from the workshops but we have to cover our costs.  These are venue hire, facilitators' fees and expenses, training development and administrative costs.  The price includes refreshments, lunch and the information pack.  Unfortunately we are not able to provide childcare.

A month before the workshop date we will decide whether the numbers of booked attendees are sufficient, and will either confirm or cancel.  If we cancel a full refund will be given.  Cancellations received 5 weeks before the workshop date will be refunded in full. Cancellations notified 3-5 weeks before the date will be refunded at 50%. We are unable to refund cancellations received with less than 3 weeks’ notice.

It is wise not to book travel or accommodation until we have confirmation of the numbers for each individual workshop.

How do I book?

Choose a workshop from the schedule below and check availability.  Then register your interest here:Telling and Talking workshops

 Use the link to the online booking form and complete it including the date you wish to book.  You will then be sent details of how to pay.  Your booking is only secure once we have received payment.  If no date is suitable, you can use the form to express interest and we will contact you when new dates are added.

Following confirmation of your booking by email, and about two weeks prior to the workshop we will ask you to complete a short survey online.  This is a requirement of your attendance, and must be completed by each person (rather than each couple).  You will also complete a short feedback form before you leave the workshop.  Anonymised evaluations from these workshops may be used in DC Network materials or for funding applications.

What if I haven't conceived yet?

If you are thinking of starting a family using a donor or donors, we also run Preparing for Parenthood workshops – click here for further details.

More questions?

Just contact us by email: and we will be happy to help.

2017 Programme


Early bird cut-off



Full/Early Bird Price
(DCN Members get £15 pp additional discount)


8th Jul 2017 14th Jun 2017 Single Women / Lesbian Couples London £190 per person or £340 per couple Yes
16th Sept 2017 16th Aug 2017 Heterosexual Couples London £190/£160 per person or £340/£290 per couple Please contact the office
23rd Sept 2017 23rd Aug 2017 Heterosexual Couples DUBLIN £190/£160 per person or £340/£290 per couple Yes
7th Oct 2017 7th Sept 2017 Heterosexual Couples BELFAST £190/£160 per person or £340/£290 per couple Yes
4th Nov 2017 4th Oct 2017 Heterosexual Couples London £190/£160 per person or £340/£290 per couple Yes
18th Nov 2017 18th Oct 2017 Single Women London £190/£160 per person or £340/£290 per couple Yes
18th Nov 2017 18th Oct 2017 Lesbian Couples London £190/£160 per person or £340/£290 per couple Yes
25th Nov 2017 25th Oct 2017 Double & Embryo Donation - all Family Types London £190/£160 per person or £340/£290 per couple Yes



Online booking form

The price includes refreshments, lunch and a pack of materials.


Alternatively you can use this link to open a printable booking form to complete and return with a cheque.



Print a 2017 Booking Form