Circles

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Why Engage in Circles Training?

When a community is struck by offending, it is the responsibility of everyone affected to address what happened. Circles involve a horizontal process in which all participants have the same rights and obligations. Participants take turns discussing the incident and share how it affected them. They collaboratively decide which steps youths need to take to make amends to victims, family and the community. It is an empowering process that deters youth from reoffending while attaining high satisfaction rates from victims and communities.

What Will You Learn?

  • Overview of the Circles process
  • Principles and values behind the use of Circles
  • The differences between criminal justice and restorative justice
  • The different steps of organizing a Circle process
  • Circle-keeping techniques

Learning Methods and Media

American Humane successfully applies the principles of adult learning theory, using the following methods and media:

  • PowerPoint slides, videos, handouts and flip charts
  • Didactic presentations as well as small- and large-group discussions
  • Experiential activities, including role plays and problem-solving exercises

Transfer of Learning

Attending training is only an initial step in the learning process. Once the training session is over, it is crucial that there are opportunities to apply and practice what was learned, and to receive feedback and ask questions. American Humane strongly supports transfer-of-learning processes by providing ongoing training staff availability for consultation and technical assistance. In addition, American Humane has the flexibility and capability to shape training schedules to match the needs of trainees; both initial trainings and specialized follow-up sessions include the necessary space and time for thorough practice application.

Logistics

The training day is typically eight hours, allowing for a one-hour lunch break and two 15-minute breaks. We will work to accommodate your community norms to determine start/end times.

To request a Circles training for your agency or community, please email us at restorativejustice@americanhumane.org.

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