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Building, growing, changing

It was a cool wet day in Nova Scotia as we made our way to a small place outside of Truro Nova Scotia. Every since I heard about it I wanted to see it, the building of the Schooner Lena Blanche. My wife Linda and I had returned to Nova Scotia to attend a visitation

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Community, responsiveness, opportunity

We believe in growth and nurture it as much as possible. Recently a participant reached out to me. They had moved from a very intensive form of support to living with someone in community. It took a long time for them to get there, and a lot of intentional work by both them and their

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Connections, healing, hope

Spring is an essential time for growth, prosperity, and transition. The change of seasons brings about nicer weather, gardens, and friendly faces; a reminder of the importance of connections with the earth and the people whose time we appreciate and value. We have settled into the new season very nicely at Open Circle. Things are

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Who We Are

Initiatives for Just Communities is a non-profit, charitable organization that is committed to restorative justice practices. IJC works to create communities where each person, particularly the stigmatized and the vulnerable, has a place to belong.

Four programs run through IJC:

  • Circles of Support and Accountability (CoSA) – supports the healthy reintegration of people with high-risk offence cycles as they are released from prison and settle back into the community.
  • El’dad – provides residential support, vocational training and assistance, and support for people with intellectual disabilities.
  • Open Circle – encourages volunteers to visit individuals in prison and offer caring non-judgemental support.
  • Touchstone – provides case management and direct individualized support to adults and older youth with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.

What We Value

— All People

As part of creation, we see each person as having infinite value and necessary for a healthy community. Thus, we respect each person, and believe in their goodness.

— Community

We seek to build community with our participants and in so doing, strengthen the broader community.

— Compassion

We offer welcome and accompaniment, without judgement, to all on the journey.

— Restorative Justice

To promote healing of the individual and the community, we seek to repair harm and restore the individual and the community to honest, transparent and trusting relationships.

— Advocacy

We value hearing those who are often unheard, and honour their story. We work to ensure their voices are heard both within and outside our organization.

— Transparency

We promote and model honesty and integrity in all our work, because these are critical for true community to flourish.
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