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 picking up with Stony Mountain being open again for volunteer activity, which is a welcome event! We were able to have an institutional coffeehouse at Unit 7 in May for the second time in about two years. Participants and volunteers had a chance to catch up and share news and updates about their lives. It’s certainly true that we don’t know what we’ve got ‘til it’s gone and this rings very true with Open Circle and the sudden lack of involvement that the pandemic brought about.

With this somewhat in our rear view mirror, it’s refreshing to be in a place where we can foster the relationships we have, and put some focus into building up our program again at Stony. So many hard lessons have been learned during COVID for many of us, but with that has come a greater appreciation of our volunteers, participants and the folks who keep reaching out interested in volunteering or wanting to join the program.

The last couple of weeks have been a testament to the idea that growth and healing are occurring right under our noses, whether we see it in the moment or not. It has come in the form of requests and offers to help support the work of Open Circle, from those who know (and many who don’t) the life inside prison all too well. It is incredibly hopeful as we shift into this next phase of the pandemic to have folks reaching out to lend a hand where they can.

An incredibly challenging couple of years must bring about positivity in the end- and it feels like we may be turning that corner and ready to embrace all that spring has to offer. 

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