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Holiday Inn

30 Fairway Road South

Kitchener, ON N2A 2N2

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This is a free event for those in the community 55+ and their supports.

Breakfast and a light lunch will be served.


BREAKOUT SESSIONS (choose one, under Registration link)

Jennifer Ball / Arlene Groh -- "Peacemaking Circles and Seniors: Explore the Possibilities"

How is the Circle process relevant for seniors?

Peacemaking Circles provide a way to bring people together to have difficult conversations, to work through conflict or differences and to build relationships. The Circle process is a way of getting the most complete picture people can of themselves, each other and the issue at hand to enable them to move together in a good way. Circles are based on an assumption of positive potential – that something good can always come out of whatever situation we are in. Circles also assume that no one has the whole picture – that it is only by sharing all of our perspectives that we can come closer to a complete picture.

Peacemaking Circles are being used for decision-making, problem solving, conflict resolution and community building in schools, neighbourhoods, workplaces, family and the criminal justice system.

In this breakout session, you will have opportunity to experience the power of Circle, learn about its structural elements, and explore possibilities of using it with seniors.

Jennifer Ball, PhD, RPP, MCIP, is an assistant professor of Peace and Conflict Studies at Conrad Grebel University College, University of Waterloo. She is a registered professional planner and worked for several years in rural Ontario. Jennifer is also an international facilitator and Circle trainer, with experience in North America, Australia, and East and Southern Africa. She is co-author of Doing Democracy with Circles: Engaging Communities in Public Planning (2010). Jennifer co-facilitates the annual Peacemaking Circles training workshop through the Conflict Management Certificate Program at Conrad Grebel.

Jason Spencer -- "The Art of Community Living"

Jason Spencer is the Service Coordinator for Community Mediation Services (CMS). Community Mediation Services offers a wide range of conflict resolution services (including mediation) for members of the community by providing a safe, confidential environment to address difficult situations. Through living in community, Jason discovered two common responses to conflict. Resilient people build consensus as they collaborate to solve the problem. While others compete, generating mistrust and dissolving relationships. A BA in Sociology from Wilfrid Laurier University and community development work with people of diverse backgrounds, complements his lived experience. Through CJI’s Mediation Services, Jason helps community members develop the skills they need to resolve conflict. Jason hopes to help people learn and grow together in order to reduce tensions and create healthier communities.


Julie Friesen / Wendy Meek -- "Building a Restorative Justice Elder Mediation Service Program"

Julie Friesen is a Director of Programs at Community Justice Initiatives. She has been involved in conflict resolution, mediation and management positions for the past 15 years. Julie oversees the mediation and conflict resolution programs. Trained in several restorative justice processes, She has many years’ experience facilitating situations of conflict and crime. Julie also has an MA in Sociology from the University of Kansas. During mediations, She has been awed by the good outcomes that emerge from difficult situations. They inspire my belief in the courageous power of people to forgive and accept responsibility for their actions. What Julie loves best about our work is that it has changed her personally. Julie dislikes the hurt and anger that she feels when at odds with someone, but she is confident that I can face conflict and grow through it.

Wendy Meek is the Service Coordinator for the Elder Mediation Service (EMS) at Community Justice Initiatives. The Elder Mediation Service offers conflict resolution services for older adults 55+ and their families/caregivers/community support services by providing a safe, confidential environment to address difficult situations. Wendy was born and raised in South Africa when conflict and violence were part of daily life. She witnessed many unjust situations—which led her to search for a way to repair harm. When her family immigrated to Canada, she discovered Restorative Justice. During her many years at CJI, Wendy has assisted victims and offenders, as well as, community members to resolve conflict. In Wendy's current role with older adults, their families, and others in their lives she is inspired when people experience life change as they address their conflict and negotiate an outcome that satisfies everyone.


KEY NOTE SPEAKERS

Arlene Groh

Looking Back, Looking Forward: A restorative justice approach to Elder Abuse and Mistreatment

Arlene Groh RN, BA, is a consultant for Healing Approaches to Elder Abuse and Mistrhheatment (www.healingapproaches.com). She pioneered and coordinated the Restorative Justice Approaches to Elder Abuse Project, was a founding member of Waterloo Region’s Elder Abuse Response Team and initiated and now chairs Age Friendly Waterloo. Arlene gives presentations and workshops internationally, nationally, and locally on the complex issue of elder abuse, how to respond including restorative justice as a resource option and about Age Friendly Cities as a strategy for the prevention of elder abuse. Her practice is guided by restorative justice philosophy and values. Please see website for publications. Arlene is the recipient of many awards for her outstanding contribution to seniors and her dedication to the prevention of elder abuse.

Gert Hartmann

Located in Waterloo, the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging (RIA) enhances the quality of life and care of older adults through partnerships in research, education and practice. Working with the University of Waterloo and Conestoga College, we focus on the integration of research, training and practice, rather than looking at each in isolation. The RIA’s approach is holistic, we value knowledge both from research and lived experience. RIA explores the aging process across a number of areas including nutrition, technology, brain health and heart health.

The presentation will provide an overview of the RIA and how innovative research is used to create and improve programs, education and training that will support you, as you age.

Gert Hartmann is the Director of Community Partnerships and Business Development. One of Gert’s key responsibilities is to share the RIA’s work with a network of community- based organizations. A native of Waterloo Region, she has spent over 20 years working in the not-for-profit sector.

Chris Cowie

Chris Cowie is the Executive Director of Community Justice Initiatives. He has previously served as the Executive Director of two Kitchener based agencies and a Director for SIM Canada. He serves as an executive member of the Waterloo Regional Crime Prevention Council and is completing a MA in Leadership from the University of Guelph. He has been a senior manager in community charities related to justice, anti-poverty, community development, and international mission since 1988. Previously, Chris was the Executive Director at two Kitchener agencies. He has also consulted on resource development, organizational development, and strategic planning for charities and small businesses. A member of several boards over the years, Chris has also worked in various church leadership capacities, and was President of the Ontario Association of Community Correctional Residences for two terms. Currently, Chris chairs the Waterloo Regional Crime Prevention Council. He received an MA in Leadership from the University of Guelph. In 1989 while working with young offenders at another agency, he collaborated with Community Justice Initiatives to develop a Victim Offender Reconciliation program. Witnessing the power of Restorative Justice, Chris became a strong proponent of using restorative practices in response to many kinds of crime and conflict.

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30 Fairway Road South

Kitchener, ON N2A 2N2

Canada

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