Who We Are and What We Do
           



IBARJ Projects and Collaborations

Stone Soup Project

The Illinois BARJ Project has partnered with the United Methodist Church of Evergreen Park (UMCMG, Inc.) to co-create sustainable restorative practices in the south suburbs of Cook County, specifically in the 6th judicial district. The Stone Soup Project is not a single programmatic solution, but rather a process for engaging south suburban community members in creating and sustaining restorative justice practices in their communities. The Stone Soup Project is based on broad stakeholder engagement and collaborative support for creating sustainable restorative solutions and sharing their learning to promote expansion into other communities. Learn more


Governor’s State University (GSU) www.govst.edu

IBARJP has worked closely with GSU on many projects to further awareness of restorative practices in communities and schools. Together, IBARJP and GSU’s Criminal Justice Department have brought restorative practices to the University in curriculum, educational opportunities as well as with field related research. We’ve established evaluation protocols and tools for schools gauging school climate and implementation of restorative practices (see the report below).

Additionally, we are continuing to work together on the long-term evaluation of the community-led Stone Soup Project, particularly the collaborative process that is guided by the Art of Hosting principles. For more information please contact Sara Balgoyen: sarab@ibarj.org.

School Data Collection Instruments for use by schools implementing Restorative Practices

Art of Hosting (AoH)

IBARJP is working with the worldwide Art of Hosting Community, artofhosting.org whose use of practices and methodologies that include Circles, World Café and Open Space Technology complement the principles and practices of restorative justice and community-led initiatives. Together, we have hosted events with world-renowned Art of Hosting experts, including multi-day training retreats to help Illinois community members deepen their practices. IBARJP utilizes the guiding principles of the Art of Hosting in the Stone Soup Project, the community-led initiative in the south suburbs. For more information please contact Sally Wolf: sallywolf@ibarj.org.


Adler School of Psychology

In 2011-2012, the Illinois BARJ Project (IBARJP) collaborated with the Institute on Public Safety and Social Justice (IPSSJ) at the Adler School of Professional Psychology to conduct a study on urban systems of restorative justice. IBARJP representatives surveyed agencies and schools throughout Cook County that currently implement restorative programs and practices to learn about their organizational histories, active initiatives, and collaborations with other restorative practitioners. Meanwhile, the IPSSJ collected data on restorative programs in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, so as to compare its system of restorative justice practitioners to the one in Cook County. The overall purpose of the study was to collect valuable information on local applications of restorative justice to share with policymakers, educators, and the general public. This new information is meant to encourage both mainstream awareness and increased systemic implementation of restorative justice in Cook County and beyond. The findings of this collaborative study have been summarized and assessed in a white paper written by the IPSSJ, Click here for the full report: https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B0x1NZf3DQUZNEo5ejduWmpfUUk/edit?pli=1.

Additionally, this information can be found in our Cook County map. For more information please contact Sara Balgoyen: sarab@ibarj.org.


Alton Safe Schools/Healthy Students Initiative

IBARJP has been working with the director of the Alton Safe Schools, Healthy Students Initiative to bring restorative practices to the Alton community and school district since 2010. The Alton School District No. 11 has been incorporating restorative practices (Circles) into their universal approach through Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS). This is bringing circles into classrooms across the district as a way to improve relationships, establish expectations, resolve conflict and much more. Additionally, the community is working on incorporating restorative practices into their police diversion program for youth and IBARJP is supporting this work. For more information please contact Sandy Crawford: scrawford@altonschools.org.


AmeriCorps VISTA

Since 2011, IBARJP has hosted a full-time volunteer through the AmeriCorps Volunteers In Service To America (VISTA) program. VISTA volunteers serve one-year terms at nonprofit organizations across the country with the mission of reducing poverty and its effects on individuals and communities. The duty of a VISTA is to support the capacity-building and sustainability efforts of his or her host organization. IBARJP is now hosting its VISTA, Shaniqua Jones as part of the Stone Soup Project. For more information please contact Marie Goff, crawalavip.mail@gmail.com director of the hosting site, Cra-Wa-La VIP.


Champaign-Urbana Area Project

The Champaign-Urbana Area Project is a community organization dedicated to providing services to “at-risk” youth and their families. Since 2011, the Champaign-Urbana Area Project has implemented a Restorative Justice Initiative to establish and strengthen restorative justice practices in the Champaign-Urbana community and its schools. Through this initiative, the Champaign-Urbana Area Project has helped to sustain the Peer Jury Program at Central High School, organized a series of Community Conversations events to promote dialogue around local justice-related issues, and spread local awareness about restorative justice. For more information please contact Patricia Avery: patricicavery@gmail.com.


Embrace RJ in Schools

The Embrace Restorative Justice (RJ) in Schools Collaborative is a unique collaboration of over 25 organizations who have joined together to stem violence in schools and communities by advocating for the use of RJ in Chicago Public Schools (CPS). The most innovative aspect of this work is the creation of an influential relationship that has led to Embrace acting in an advisory capacity to CPS. Embrace partners with CPS to integrate RJ into the schools in a systematic and effective manner and has taken a key role in revising the CPS Student Code of Conduct to replace its overly punitive measures with key components of RJ. To connect with this group or for more information, please contact Nancy Michaels: nmichaels@roosevelt.edu or visit the Facebook page.


John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

IBARJP got its non-profit start thanks to the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Their seed funding turned the Illinois BARJ Initiative (a group of statewide restorative justice supporters & volunteers) into a 501 c3. Additionally, the MacArthur Foundation continued to fund IBARJ in its growth and development as an organization in grant funding. Most recently (from 2009-2011), the MacArthur Foundation supported IBARJP under their “Models for Change” Initiative focused on Juvenile Justice Reform in Illinois and 3 other states (http://www.modelsforchange.net/index.html). The opportunities given to IBARJP by the MacArthur Foundation, helped position IBARJP as an organization providing resources in Balanced and Restorative Justice in Illinois. For more information please contact Sally Wolf: sallywolf@ibarj.org


Mt. Carmel Safe Schools Healthy Students Initiative

IBARJP has worked with the Director of the Safe Schools, Healthy Students Initiative in Mt. Carmel Illinois to train juvenile police officers, teachers and staff from schools as well as youth in restorative practices. This has transformed into regular circles with staff and students as well as a Peer Jury in the High School. For more information please contact Priss Parmenter: priss46@gmail.com.