Archive for October, 2009

Diversity Awareness Month with Girls Circle

As “Diversity Awareness” month winds to a conclusion, we continue to honor and celebrate the vast diversity of girls, women, leaders, and communities that are part of the Girls Circle movement.

Thank you, all of you!

Diversity in Girls Circle is about culture, identity, expression, perspective, voice, ethnicity, connection.  It is also something that – when not intentionally recognized– can leave some girls feeling disconnected, judged, or left out.

We have a great curricula – Honoring Our Diversity – for girls.  This 12 week guide is RICH with topics, activities, and discussion questions to acknowledge, involve, raise awareness, and enjoy each girl’s experiences. Some of the topics addressed in this Activity Guide are stereotype busting, local action, culture clashing, and of course, honoring diversity.

A very cool feature of this guide is the Journal that’s included. For each week’s topic, there’s a message and space for girls to write or draw about something related to the topic and activity.

Even when we haven’t prefaced it, always keep in mind as a facilitator that there are all kinds of girls and all kinds of situations.  So, name the obvious: if you are of a different culture or ethnicity than the girls in your group – just say it.  Let them teach you about themselves.  They are leaders.




October 27, 2009 at 8:02 pm Leave a comment

An Important Message from the Founders (plus video!)

Dear Friends of Girls Circle and Council for Boys,

We are reaching out to our community with an update and important request for your support. Please view our 2 minute video message and help us reach our fund-raising goal by December 1st. Donate here today

We want to acknowledge so many of you that have helped expand our mission by implementing the Girls Circles – and more recently the Councils for Boys and Young Men – empowering communities of caring that have touched the lives of countless youth nationally and around the world.

Together, we have responded to adolescents’ essential and urgent need for belonging and we have all witnessed the social change and the shifts in organizational culture that have improved the overall quality of services from the local yoga studio, to the Girls Scout troop, to the after school program, to the Boys & Girls Club, to the group home….to the facilities and treatment centers that house youth in the juvenile justice system.

Now, for the first time in our organization’s history, we need to ask for your financial support. With the current economic situation, and government grants and funding dwindling, we are reaching out to you to help us to continue to be able to respond to the demand related to providing essential training and technical assistance, professional development, support, and quality manualized curricula.

We know that by working together to provide caring communities and safe places for youth, we can continue to create change in the world.

If you can, will you please join the effort to help? We are a Project of the Tides Center, a 501(3)(c) organization and your contribution will build the bridge we need to cross over during these challenging times. We hope you receive this request knowing how dearly we value your friendship and shared commitment to youth and healthy connections.

Donate on our website at


Giovanna & Beth and the Girls Circle/Council Team

October 22, 2009 at 5:50 pm Leave a comment

LGBT Community, Girls Circle and The Council for Boys and Young Men

October is Diversity Awareness Month. Are you aware that “adolescents who are lesbian, gay, or bisexual are more than twice as likely as their heterosexual peers to be depressed and think about or attempt suicide”? See many LGBT safety and health-related stats and tips at:

An issue facing legislative attention is H.R. 2262 – the Safe Schools Improvement Act, which extends and specifies categories of identity which are commonly targeted by bullying and harassment. It would name sexual orientation and sexual identity among other categories in which students are often harassed and which need protection under the law. For more information on this bill, see

So how are the needs of LGBT youth addressed by Girls Circle and The Council for Boys and Young Men?

Our number one goal is safety – physical, relational, cultural, psychological. This means that all participants of every Girls Circle… … …

Continue Reading October 15, 2009 at 4:41 pm Leave a comment

FREE Public Conference Call on Girls Circle & The Council Tomorrow, Wednesday Oct 14th.

Every second Wednesday of each month, The Girls Circle Association is hosting two types of monthly teleconferences as follows:

Facilitator Support Circles – for those currently leading circles or councils or for those who wish to begin, we will host a “virtual” support circle for facilitators across the nation

Informational Gatherings – for those who wish to learn more specifically about the Girls Circle or Council for Boys & Young Men programs and how it can enhance their current programming.

Calls will be held on the 2nd Wednesday of each month. Both calls are at no cost!

Conference Dial-in Number: (712) 432-1601
Participant Access Code: 933215#

Email us at if you’d like to submit a topic or question that you’d like us to address on the call.
More Details:

Facilitator Support Circles
Second Wednesday of Each Month
1-2pm PST, 3-4pm CST, 4-5pm EST

This call will rotate between addressing Girls Circle and The Council for Boys and Young Men each month and is intended to be a support circle to adults currently running either or both of the two programs. See below for a schedule of topics for the rest of 2009 and mark your calendars.

  • October 14th – The Council
  • November 11th – All Programs
  • December 9th – All Programs

Introduction to Girls Circle & The Council
Second Wednesday of Each Month
11am-12pm PST, 1-2pmCST, 2-3pm EST

This call is for the general public as an introduction to both Girls Circle and The Council. In addition to a Q&A period, we will be covering the following topics:

  • What is The Council / Girls Circle?
  • How it Works in Different Youth Serving Sectors, i.e. education, juvenile justice mental health, child welfare, community-based orgs
  • Current Research Outcomes / Findings
  • Methods of Implementation
  • Funding

Please join us and the Girls Circle and Council for Boys & Young Men community on these informative and collaborative calls.

Talk to you soon!

– The Girls Circle Association Team

October 13, 2009 at 6:11 pm Leave a comment

How to Engage Disconnected or Disinterested Girls

Recently we’ve made a slight but important revision to one aspect of our Girls Circle Facilitator Training –regarding managing challenging dynamics that show up in Girls Circle. We’re doing a similar piece in the facilitator training for The Council for Boys and Young Men.

Following a trainer’s demonstration role play, we are adding a task for participants to develop, write down, and then practice with a partner some verbal intervention regarding a challenging behavior. The verbal intervention is a communication that expresses kindness, acknowledgement, naming the dynamic observed, inviting discussion, taking the concern to the group for their input and how they can relate to that concern, and offering choices for participation even if limited. Or, any combination of these.

Kitty Tyrol, Senior Training Manager, made this addition… … …

Continue Reading October 6, 2009 at 4:50 pm 1 comment

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