• April 8, 2021
    7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
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Restorative practices is a social science devoted to improving relationships between individuals and within a community. It can be used in families, schools, businesses, churches, and the court system (often called restorative justice). It can be a relatively informal process or highly formalized.
Circles, also called meetings or conferences, are an open and inviting process to allow all stakeholders in a situation or community to sit together to examine and improve relationships. Circles can be used proactively or retroactively to strengthen community ties which can restore relationships, repair harm, and discourage future harmful behavior. Circles can be used to check-in before problems arise, to facilitate conflicts, as preparation for big changes, or to repair and strengthen relationships between children, adults, or intergenerationally.

Attendees will learn the basics of when to use circles and how to facilitate the process before participating in a circle process themselves. Rob will guide the group in a circle then answer questions and offer advice on how to apply circles in a variety of contexts (as well as tell stories from his years of experience facilitating circles).

Leave prepared to use the circle process in your own realm of influence to:

  • discuss best practices for VBS this summer despite COVID
  • prepare your immediate or extended family for a big, upcoming change
  • work through a transition in your workplace
  • help your children, grandchildren, or students work through conflict


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Robert Fennimore works full-time providing restorative practices to the Eastern Lancaster County School District, the only school district in Lancaster County with such a position. Rob leads trainings on restorative practices, peacebuilding, and positive behavior practices. He holds an M.A. in Education and an M.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus on Education and Restorative Justice. He has additional extensive training completing both levels of Strategies for Trauma Awareness and Resilience (STAR) training and holds a graduate certificate in Peace and Conflict Transformation in Education Settings. He is currently completing a graduate certificate in Trauma and Resilience in Educational Environments.