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What is the NEIGHBOR Project?

The Mandell Gisnet Center offers low cost mediation services to community members through the Neighbor Project. This program was established several years ago as a result of a tragedy that occurred in our County resulting from a neighbor dispute. At the Mandell Gisnet Center we encourage early resolution of disputes before they escalate. We provide skilled mediators to guide the parties to a successful result. We also offer peer mediation training to community groups who may be interested in developing or expanding mediation and communication skills. To set a Neighbor Project mediation or a community training contact us today.

How does the NEIGHBOR Project help?

  • Communication breakdowns
  • Neighbor issues including noise, parking, pets, privacy, fences and property lines
  • Negotiating:
    o Shared expenses
    o Shared resources
    o Evictions
    o Return of security deposit

How long does NEIGHBOR Project mediation take?

Our process of mediation initiation usually takes between 2 to 4 weeks before a mediation session is scheduled. Mediation is a voluntary process. A case developer will work with both sides to determine if mediation is a good fit for the situation.

Once both parties have agreed to mediate, they will receive up to 3 hours of mediation with 2 to 3 mediators.

In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity.

-Albert Eisntein

We view conflict as on opportunity for growth and change.

What is mediation?

Mediation is a form of Alternate Dispute Resolution that utilizes a neutral, third- party mediator who facilitates a conversation between the parties. Conflicts escalate when there is a breakdown in communication, therefore mediation stresses the importance of effective communication. The mediator will ask thought provoking questions, lead the conversation, and ensure all parties feel safe and secure. The mediation process is 100% confidential, therefore anything said within a mediation session cannot be used outside of mediation. Confidentiality allows all parties to speak openly and freely, thus making the process as effective as possible.

How long will the appointment last?

Each appointment will be allotted a three-hour time slot. Your appointment may not take the full three hours, however the time is available if needed.

How much does it cost?

Nominal $25 fee for each side once a mediation is scheduled.

Where are the mediations?

Mediations are held at the Mandell Gisnet Center for Conflict Management located at the Community Justice Center in Seaside, CA. Click here for directions.

Who will be the mediator in my case?

The mediator will be an independent, third party. The mediator has no stake in the outcome of your case and will remain neutral throughout the process. The mediators are trained and have extensive experience working as mediators.

How does the mediation process work?

The mediation appointment will take place at our office (2620 Colonel Durham St. Seaside, CA 93955). A mediator will be assigned to your case and will sit down with both parties. The mediator will facilitate the conversation by asking questions. Through this conversation, we will attempt to reach a resolution to your current conflict. Once a settlement is reached, the mediator will write up a settlement agreement which will be signed by both parties.

Who can I bring with me to the mediation appointment and administrative appeal hearing?

You are welcome to bring family members and those who live with you. We ask that you do not bring any young children unless it is necessary. If you have an attorney, please request their presence at both appointments. In addition, if you need assistance during the appointment, we ask that you bring your support person.

Will an interpreter be provided during the mediation?

The Mandell Gisnet Center can provide an interpreter at the mediation appointment, if requested ahead of time. If you wish to have a court-certified interpreter, you may retain one at your own expense.

Am I required to participate in mediation?

We cannot require you to participate, however we strongly encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity. Mediation allows both parties to discuss the current conflict and reach a resolution that is beneficial to both parties.

Call the NEIGHBOR Project Program at (831) 582-5234
or email neighborproject@mandellgisnetcenter.org.

When you call us, you’ll speak to our program coordinator who will explain the program, do a brief intake and assign your case to a case developer if you choose to pursue mediation.