Uses of Circles

Circles Can Help Many Situations and Needs

The circumstances in which Circles can be valuable are virtually unlimited.  Here are a few areas where the use of Circles holds enormous potentials.  Many of these applications are already in use:

Schools: Enhance learning in the classroom; reduce bullying; deal with behavior issues constructively; build team spirit in sports.

Youth & Youth Centers: Address issues that lead to gang involvement; build team and interpersonal skills; promote safe teen driving.

Families: Support parent–child relations; deepen relations between spouses and partners; ease the pain and conflict around divorce; help to blend new families; enrich retirement; deal with deaths, wills and estates.

Support for: Grief, emotional healing, transitions in life, times of illness, recovery from addictions, health crises and maintaining health.

Business & Workplace: Enhance problem-solving; build communicatiion and good relations; transform conflicts into positive opportunities; make business planning more effective; build support and options during unemployment.

Community Building: Draw on diverse strengths; build mutual understanding; participate in the local planning process; rally activism to respond more effectively to challenges and injustices.

Local Planning: Integrate diverse community voices in forming plans; resolve conflicts; make complex decisions; support follow-through on plans; address environmental and safety concerns.

Criminal Justice Uses:

  • Diversion Programs –  To create alternatives to incarceration.
  • Prison Residents – To promote positive change.
  • Re-Entry Programs –  To reduce recidivism and support positive life changes.
  • Probation –  To support positive behavior.
  • Rebuilding life after exoneration.

Block Clubs: Deal with neighborhood issues; address conflicts in positive, community-building ways; build relations across racial and class divides; resolve differences and build relations in apartment
or condo complexes; create a net to support young people in the neighborhood.

Racial Justice: Address historical and ongoing trauma from racial injustices and inequities; promote awareness and understanding across racial, class, and ethnic differences; work for equity, repairing longstanding harms, and meeting human needs.

Veterans: Support the return of veterans from war; help with PTSD and addictions and to prevent suicides; help rebuild family and community net for veterans.

Environmental Issues: How to save energy in the home; respond to climate change in every way possible; stop patterns of pollution; clean up and reduce toxins.

Churches and Nonprofits: Enhance mutual understanding; resolve conflicts; avoid factionalizing and restoring community spirit; plan projects and address administration issues; develop or re-energize shared vision.

Elder Centers: Create community among residents; provide support with issues surrounding aging; develop meaningful projects.

Hospice: Support the person moving toward death and his or her family; handle the funeral arrangements; provide support for surviving family members and friends.

Whatever the need or use, though, Circles bring people together in a good way.  Taking time to sit down, listen to each other, and express mutual care and concern are restorative. Especially among those who live and work together, the Circle experience can move relationships to much deeper levels.