Creative Response to Conflict

Welcome! We hope you and your families are keeping safe and well in these challenging times. The closing of schools due to Covid-19 has changed much of our work but we’ve adapted and are grateful for technology. Because of the restorative and social emotional learning content and practices of our work, we’ve been able to offer tools and support to our program participants. Whether it’s our re-entry support group, teachers, or fellow trainers across the globe, our online circles provide a model and opportunities to teach content and build community.

Members of our Tuesday Night Support Group –for formerly incarcerated women and their families– are dealing with losses and increased stress, so, in addition to giving referrals and resources, we’ve added a second gathering each week. We’ve been awarded a grant from the American Arbitration Association to begin “Restorative Circles for Incarcerated People & Those Harmed,” in several New York correctional facilities, and will soon begin an online circle with men in re-entry in Rockland.

We continue to work with Bridg-It and M.S. 217 in Queens to help students respond to cyber-bullying and model affirmation through our “Social Media-tors” program.  Though we moved training and discussions online, educators in our Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) course that started last fall indicated it was highly valuable and found the weekly meetings helpful in this period of upheaval. In cooperation with Rockland Teachers Center (RTC), we gave additional online SEL workshops and we’re now in the midst of an online version of the yearly graduate-level conflict resolution class we teach through SUNY New Paltz. We’re also about to begin a new course on restorative practices at RTC which we developed for our partnership with Peace Peddlers.

And our monthly International Restorative Circle to share ideas and skills in restorative practices with colleagues, started at the beginning of the year, is going strong!

We hope you’ll support our work to transform conflict into an opportunity for growth and give more people the much needed skills to restore harm and build community!