Restorative Justice Trainings

The Gros Institute offers various restorative justice trainings to Lewis University students and faculty, as well as outside organizations who aim to adopt a restorative approach in their delivery of services. Trainings we offer include:

 Introductory Circle

The Introductory Circle is designed for those who intend to participate in 3-Day Peace Circle Training to become a Circle Keeper. Attendees will engage in a Circle and, through experiential learning, will become accustomed to the stages, flow, and fundamental elements of the Peace Circle process. This workshop will allow individuals to deepen relationships with other participants, promote open and honest dialogue through deep listening, and create a safe space together in order to address difficult issues as a community.

 3-Day Peace Circle Training

This 3-day experiential training prepares participants to facilitate peacemaking circles with community members, youth, and colleagues. A peacemaking circle provides a collaborative process that unites individuals for dialogue. Circles serve as a platform for honing listening and storytelling skills, fostering trust, and fortifying connections. This approach draws inspiration from ancient indigenous customs, highlighting their enduring significance within communities across generations. Workshop attendees deepen their abilities to build and improve relationships, promote open and honest dialogue, and create safe spaces to address difficult issues. Participants learn the stages and flow of the circle and practice the fundamental elements of the peace circle process, including: ritual, story-telling and shared experiences, creating safe space and establishing core shared values, building relationships and trust, and touches on consensus decision-making.

Piece Circle"Lewis faculty/staff and community members gather in a Peace Circle during a 3-Day Peace Circle Training".

 1-Day Refresher Workshop

The 1-Day Refresher Workshop is designed for previously trained Circle Keepers and will be approximately 5-6 hours long (specific length and hours of day may vary). Keepers who participate will identify areas of Circle Keeping for which they would like review or deepened understanding. This workshop will allow Circle Keepers to improve their skills and learn how to apply them to various community settings in which they will facilitate Peace Circles.

 Mediation Training

Mediation works through the lens of Peace and Justice where practitioners understand peace as more than the absence of war, conflict, tension, or oppression. Just peace builders engage communities and cooperate to create conditions necessary for human flourishing including conflict transformation, restorative justice, and collaboration across differences. Work toward just peace is actively self-reflective, anti-racist, and evolving. Mediation reinforces a variety of techniques, theories, and frameworks for analyzing and resolving conflict. Participants of the training will understand the progression of effective mediation from conflict analysis to exploring techniques, process models, and third-party roles to constructively intervene in conflict. This training emphasizes building conflict resolution skills and abilities. Much of the pedagogical experience will involve critical reflection about community experiences, as well as simulated conflict scenarios involving role-play activities to develop confidence in employing diation. Trainees will demonstrate proficiency in mediation by passing a certification examination.

If you are interested in our trainings, please contact us via email at

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