Using Talking Circles to promote social justice.


Talking-CircleAt UWRF Restorative Justice is being used to address Social Justice issues.  Specifically talking circles, to promote discussion and inspire action.  The four phases of the Circle will work well for this.

circlestagesOur final phase of Circle is ‘Taking Action’ and action promotes social justice.

This began back when I connected with campus activities and student services staff working on the River Falls Diversity Committee.  Key staff attended a restorative justice circle training, and immediately used the process with student leaders.  Immediately meaning they reported back on day two of training!

The student group had a training on Circle themselves, using the Restorative Justice Center. 

The next step was to hold ‘Talking Circle Tuesday’ as part of the Social Justice series.  I am excited the poster looks so cool.  I am teaming with the social justice program to develop talking circle topic relevant to each months theme.

Our first Circle was small in numbers and strong in content.  We did a few introduction round, including our ‘relationship values’ and then watched the You Tube, Did You Know.  We spoke about the aspects of the video that spoke to each of us.  It was really interesting to hear what impacted each of us.  It broadened my mind about a few perspectives.  I really enjoyed it as a Circle, since I do so many where we are responding to harm, this one was a great way to dialogue with people that I might not have gotten the opportunity to know.  I really appreciate the campus for engaging a local resource in the Social Justice Series.  I am sure they would be happy to connect with anyone who is interested in duplicating a similiar program.  If you are in the River Falls Community I hope you’ll consider attending a Circle.