FREE for families in Hudson City School District.
Hudson Youth Center and Bindlestiff’s CIrkus After School partners with Newburgh-based The Restorative Center for A Week of Restorative Justice in Hudson. This week will include Circle Keeper training for community youth & adults, followed by a weekend of community circles for the City of Hudson.
There are 20-plus organizations and agencies working directly with youth in Hudson. This training will be offered to a cohort of teens and young adults, free of charge, from the staff and participant pool of programs such as the HCSD’s ASP program; Greater Hudson Promise Neighborhood; Kite’s Nest; Bindlestiff’s Cirkus After School; Hudson Muslim Youth, Operation Unite New York, the Hudson Youth Center, and more.
Restorative Circles are a way to strengthen community bonds, build bridges, hold space for conversations, and develop youth leadership. Drawing upon a deep reservoir of restorative justice models from around the world, The Restorative Center, born in Newburgh NY, created the community-based ‘Newburgh Model’ to develop and codify unique, replicable, teachable, and flexible structures of restorative justice circles. TRC’s model of restorative justice vests in the shared humanity of us all – and raises youth into position as visionaries and facilitators of change. By implementing TRC’s model in Hudson, every member of the community claims an equal stake in the process and has their voice heard clearly, outside of a traditionally hierarchical paradigm. Hudson Week of Restorative Justice will be held from August 15-21, 2022.
On Monday through Friday, TRC’s trainers will work with teens and young adults in Circle Keeping training. The Restorative Center has led hundreds of restorative justice circle processes and dozens of trainings across the country since its creation in 2015, and the result is a strong programmatic portfolio and robust training curriculum. Successful completion of training provides individuals the tools needed to continue on in the service of cultivating and advancing the art and practice of being a circle keeper, while shaping the national conversation surrounding restorative justice.
On Friday evening, Saturday, and Sunday, August 19, 20, and 21, Community Circles will be hosted by local businesses, worship communities, and organizations. These conversation Circles will bring together a diverse pool of community members, young leaders, and local businesses, in a shared space where all may speak their truths and listen. Circles are a way to bring community members into true relationship with each other through shared stories, common values, and co-created agreements regarding the ways our lives intersect. In short, creating spaces where people really hear each other is the action, and the repairs of longstanding harms and the reduction of future harms are the outcomes.
This pilot program will foster leadership development in a “Teen Leader” cohort, who will continue to carry out TRC’s model of restorative justice in Hudson by leading intergenerational circles and co-teaching their peers and adults from the community, teachers, social workers, attorneys, and other professionals. With ongoing support from Bindlestiff, the Hudson Youth Center, and our partners, the goal is to empower youth who are not only contributing members of the community but guiding voices in its continued development.
Community support is vital, and Hudson Restorative Justice week seeks monetary support as well as volunteer time and labor. Underwriting and donations will provide food and lodging for TRC’s trainers for their week-long stay in Hudson; t-shirts with Hudson Restorative Justice logo and donor logos (artwork by Jabin Ahmed); stipends for teen employees and professional staff of organizations participating in this vital training. To donate, use our QR code:
For more information, visit the event website here:
Registration for training and community circles here:
About Bindlestiff’s Cirkus After School: Bindlestiff’s Cirkus After School uses skills like juggling, stilt walking, tumbling, partner acrobatics, prop manipulation and physical comedy to help youth to become stronger learners, community members, and leaders by encouraging them to express themselves creatively, challenge themselves physically, and work inventively with others. All programs are free to youth and families. We also create pathways to employment in our teaching programs, and in our professional circus company’s performances, administrative staff, and productions. www.bindlestiff.org
About the Hudson Youth Center: At the Hudson Youth Center we serve a wide range of youth starting from age pre-adolescents and leading all to adulthood. Through our programming we help our participants develop better social skills, become leaders, gain greater knowledge of themselves, and foster lifelong relationships. Families want to find meaningful, culturally informed and potentially transformative youth programs . There are many aspect, and choices, including sports, camps, arts programs, dance clubs etc. Pointing young people towards activities that are not only fun but also offer opportunities to develop character strengths, skills, and abilities that will last a lifetime. https://www.cityofhudsonyouth.org/hudson-youth-center
About The Restorative Center: The Restorative Center is a 501(c)(3) organization which advances and advocates for restorative justice to address the profound issues of social disconnect. The Restorative Center was founded by Shailly Agnihotri in response to the heartbreak she experienced as a public defender trying to attain justice for her clients. TRC program development is a direct answer to the consequences of the privatization of prisons, the institutionalism of racism, and the criminalization of poverty.
Drawing upon a deep reservoir of real-world experience and restorative justice models from around the world, TRC develops and codifies unique, replicable, teachable, and flexible structures of restorative justice circles. Our work demonstrates the benefits of restorative justice for incarceration, community dysfunction and resilience, reimagining school conflict, social work, and workplace forums for issues of race relations and sexual harassment. TRC directs academic work and trainings to advance deeper analysis of the impact of restorative justice and the various manners in which the potential of restorative justice can be manifest, integrating restorative justice models from across the globe and spiritual traditions of community building, holding space, and healing.
The Restorative Center (TRC) seeks a viable alternative to the adversarial system, a better way to resolve and deter conflict, to promote individual and community healing, and to reclaim justice. In fact, TRC is insistent that the ideals of Restorative Justice must not be co-opted by the criminal justice system but reside best in the power of individuals and communities.
We envision a future in which the majority of issues–that are currently routed through the criminal justice system and family court–are resolved by the communities where those issues arise. https://www.therestorativecenter.org
Hudson Restorative Justice Logo by Jabin Ahmed