Restorative Justice Circles facilitate a healing process through an intentional face-to-face process that brings together a victim, a person who has caused harm, and other members of the community affected by the harm, such as family and community members.
These circles provide a safe space where transformative healing and understanding can take place. The circles are kept by trained facilitators who seek to provide the victim, person who has caused harm, and others a chance to discuss the effects of the harm and agree on actions that the responsible person can take to best repair the harm caused.
These circles ultimately nurture a safer community where individuals are more understanding, empathetic, and less likely to commit further harm. In some cases where the harm committed is considered a legal “offense,” restorative justice circles can serve as an alternative program diverting these cases from the juvenile justice system, thus providing youth with a “second chance.”
As a part of our restorative justice offerings, these circles fit within the larger framework of restorative justice, which aims to rehabilitate those who have caused harm through healing processes that hold them accountable and allow for reconciliation with the broader community.
Youth who have caused harm may be referred to Reach For Youth’s Restorative Justice Circles by local juvenile probation departments, middle and high schools, police officers, other agencies, and by individuals. In circumstances where legal processes are involved, the following conditions must be met in order to be eligible for Restorative Justice Circles: