All October: Participate in the virtual Restorative Justice Conference

Restorative Justice Conference 2019 Community Committee
Participants in the 2019 Restorative Justice Conference at the Main Library, including the community committee who co-planned and ran the three-day event. This year’s conference will be all virtual, on Wednesdays and Fridays throughout October.

2020 theme: The Medicine Wheel: Balancing Humanity

We’re excited to announce that Oak Park’s third annual Restorative Justice Conference will take place virtually, all throughout October. This year’s theme is The Medicine Wheel: Balancing Humanity (watch the video and see below for more on this theme).

The goal of this year’s conference is to provide the community with strategies to cope in these extreme times. “2020 has been very difficult for everyone,” says the library’s Manager of Teen Services Stephen Jackson.

“This year’s conference is about ways people can support themselves and others, find balance, and find tools just to connect,” Jackson says. “Connection is something so many of us need right now.”

Manager of Teen Services Stephen Jackson gives an overview of this year’s conference.

As in past years, this year’s conference will bring together local activists and teachers, community leaders, and passionate individuals.

Together, we will dive deep into restorative practices, which include bringing empathy to a situation, seeking first to understand, and helping people without doing further harm. Whether they’re applied in a criminal justice, school, family, or broader community setting, restorative practices take a group perspective.

Conference schedule: Register now in Zoom

All October, the conference will be held over Zoom. Each week, we’ll explore one of the four quadrants of the medicine wheel.

Please note, you must register separately for the Opening Ceremony and Closing Ceremony. For all other sessions, please register in Zoom for any other days of the conference.

Opening Ceremony: Friday, October 2, 6-8 pm. Register now in Zoom »

We are gathering to create a safe space to build perspective, understanding, and community
. The Opening Ceremony will begin with an indigenous land acknowledgement, followed by an overview of the month’s conference, a welcome circle, and breakout rooms depending on capacity. Register now in Zoom only for the October 2 Opening Ceremony »

Week 1: Mental

Oak Park and River Forest High School senior Kaleigh Clarke leads a poetry workshop on Friday, October 9, 6-7 pm.

Register in Zoom for any or all days of the conference. Registration is per day; you can attend any or all sessions on those days.

  • Wednesday, October 7, 10 am–8:15 pm (click for full session info)
    • 10-11 am. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 11:15 am-12:15 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 2-3 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 3:15-4:15 pm. Jacquelyn Eadie: My Mind Shapes my World
    • 5-6 pm. Community Commons: Virtual talking Circle facilitated by FEELREAL. A space to explore what is being learned and what are challenges.
    • 6-7 pm. Peter Howstrawser: Growth Mindset
    • 7:15-8:15 pm. Frances Kraft: The Power of Partnerships
  • Friday, October 9, 10 am–8:15 pm (click for full session info)
    • 10-11 am. Tatiana Swancy: Mental Balance virtual talking Circle
    • 11:15 am-12:15 pm. Daryl Satcher: Turning Breakdowns into Breakthroughs
    • 2-3 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 3:15-4:15 pm. Josephine Horace-Jackson: Endogenous/Exogenous Depression and Anxiety: Trauma in the House
    • 5-6 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 6-7 pm. Kaleigh Clarke: Writing Poetry
    • 7:15-8:15 pm. Josh Easter & Cody Cotton: Perpetual Self-Learning

Week 2: Spiritual

Register in Zoom for any or all days of the conference. Registration is per day; you can attend any or all sessions on those days.

  • Wednesday, October 14, 10 am–8:15 pm (click for full session info)
    • 10-11 am. Karen Light: Creative Inner Wisdom
    • 2-3 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 3:15-4:15 pm. Sandra Sosa: Knowing You in Order to Know Myself
    • 5-6 pm. Community Commons: Virtual talking Circle facilitated by FEELREAL. A space to explore what is being learned and what are challenges. 
    • 6-7 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 7:15-8:15 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
  • Friday, October 16, 10 am–8:15 pm (click for full session info)
    • 10-11 am. Tatiana Swancy: Spiritual Balance virtual talking Circle 
    • 11:15 am-12:15 pm. Darcel Washington: The Spirit of Kindness
    • 3:15-4:15 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 5-6 pm. Community Commons: Virtual talking Circle facilitated by FEELREAL. A space to explore what is being learned and what are challenges.
    • 6-7 pm. Darryl Allen: Powerful Spirit Humble Heart
      7:15-8:15 pm. Robert Marshall: A Conversation About How Faith Can Be a Catalyst for Peace

Week 3: Emotional

Oak Park and River Forest High School junior and Leading Edge Teen Advisory Board member Madeline Block leads a workshop on Friday, October 23, 6-7 pm: Including and Adapting to the Disabled Community.

Register in Zoom for any or all days of the conference. Registration is per day; you can attend any or all sessions on those days.

  • Wednesday, October 21, 10 am–8:15 pm (click for full session info)
    • 10-11 am. Terrance Anderson: Balance Amid Chaos
    • 11:15 am-12:15 pm. Vanessa Westley: Restoration That Heals: The Power of Collective Healing
    • 2-3 pm. Kelly Wilson & Jennifer Bedier: Supporting Staff Through Trauma
    • 3:15-4:15 pm. Darryl Allen: Healing Ears: Therapeutic Listening 
    • 6-7 pm. DuShaun Branch: MOVEMENT + JUSTICE Yoga Session 
    • 7:15-8:15 pm. Gail Galivan: Coping through COVID-19
  • Friday, October 23, 10 am–8:15 pm (click for full session info)
    • 10-11 am. Rose Barnes and Jenny Jackson: Emotional Balance Virtual Talking Circle 
    • 11:15 am-12:15 pm. Alternatives’ Peace Ambassadors: Seeds and Shelters: A Participatory Study on Building Restorative Space
    • 2-3 pm. Community Commons: Virtual Talking Circle facilitated by RJ Staff Facilitators
    • 3:15-4:15 pm. Raheem Young & Dominique Hickman, Oak Park Township Youth Interventionists: Artificial Intelligence Versus Emotional Intelligence
    • 5-6 pm. Community Commons: Virtual Talking Circle facilitated by FEELREAL. A space to explore what is being learned and what are challenges.
    • 6-7 pm. Madeline Block: Including and Adapting to the Disabled Community
    • 7:15-8:15 pm. Devin Davis: Health & Wellness

Week 4: Physical

Register in Zoom for any or all days of the conference. Registration is per day; you can attend any or all sessions on those days.

  • Wednesday, October 28, 10 am–8:15 pm (click for full session info)
    • 10-11 am. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 11:15 am-12:15 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 2-3 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 3:15-4:15 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 5-6 pm. Community Commons: Virtual talking Circle facilitated by FEELREAL. A space to explore what is being learned and what are challenges.
    • 6-7 pm. Sterling De Sutter Summerville: The Importance of Being an Ally to Yourself and Others
    • 7:15-8:15 pm. Betsy Grimm: Mind/Body Approach to Anxiety 
  • Friday, October 30, 10 am–8 pm (click for full session info)
    • 10-11 am. Tatiana Swancy: Physical Balance virtual talking Circle 
    • 11:15 am-12:15 pm. Sophia Manuel Rethinking Responses to Community Violence with READI Chicago
    • 2-3 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 3:15-4:15 pm. Community Commons: Trained facilitators hold a virtual talking Circle
    • 5-6 pm. Community Commons: Virtual talking Circle facilitated by FEELREAL. A space to explore what is being learned and what are challenges.
    • 6-8 pm. Closing Ceremony: Register here for Closing Ceremony only »

Closing Ceremony: Friday, October 30, 6-8 pm. Register now in Zoom »

Sign up for email updates on the conference

To receive weekly email updates on workshops, peace circles, self-care and more, please sign up below.

More about this year’s theme: The medicine wheel

A medicine wheel

The medicine wheel inspires this year’s conference because it’s an ancient healing method of acknowledging the balance of the four components of humanity: mental, spiritual, emotional, and physical. “Indigenous cultures used this method to heal any dis-ease in the community,” Jackson says.

As physician Louis T. Montour, Mohawk of the Six Nations Iroquois Confederacy, writes in The Permanente Journal (PDF), “In Native American language, ‘medicine’ meant power, a vital energy force that was within all forms of nature. It also meant ‘knowledge’ because knowing gave the ‘knower’ power to do, to achieve, and to attain.”

Montour adds that the medicine wheel is not unique to Mohawk culture: “It is derived from universal principles which are found within all human groups: sharing, caring, kindness, humility, trust, honesty, and respect.”

More about past conferences

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