YouthZone Foundation
In This Issue
Being with the Energy of Love and Forgiveness by Mark Umbreit
Being with the Energy of Love and Forgiveness by Mark Umbreit
Video from the RJ Symposium

RJ in the News  


Click on the link to read an article that may be of interest to you. 

Beyond Crime and Justice-Restorative Justice offers healing and justice to Colorado communities 


What do you think?

Restorative Justice 
 Through September 2015
Fall Training Schedule
High Risk Victim Offender Dialogue Training (Advanced Facilitator Training), November 2nd - 6th in Colorado Springs.  Two spots will be available per organization.  The cost is $650. 
Restorative Tools for the Classroom-October 3 from 8:30-4:30 at the Longmont Community Justice Program-  $95  Register at
YouthZone Community Member Training in Rifle-November 18 4:30-5:30 email  to rsvp
Restorative Justice
Fall 2015 E-Newsletter
"I learned that what I did didn't only hurt me but my family, friends and community."
                                                        comment from youth RJ evaluation
Kiss 'N Squeal 2015
September 10-October 8
"How do you get your funding?"  That was the question on so many people's minds at the recent Restorative Justice Symposium.  I answered that question by stating that the reason YouthZone is able to support kids and families in our communities is that people actually care about our kids and want YouthZone to continue its work.  Not only do restorative justice volunteers donate time, but many of them donate money.  Unfortunately, government funding continues to decrease forcing non-profit organizations to rely more and more on private donations.  Although there are state funds in place to fund restorative justice programs in Colorado, they are currently only available to the five pilot projects. Making a $500 donation will pay for one RJ circle which may be a lot for an individual to donate but might be doable if you ask some friends to pitch in too. 
At YouthZone, this years need is even greater. YouthZone is expanding our services to include a new mentoring program, Pals Plus,  on the west side of Garfield County.  This program is different than PALS mentoring in that its focus is on mentoring  high risk teens rather than younger kids.  If you've sat in on any circles in Rifle, I am sure that you will agree that the need for this support for teens is huge.  We've got three new people who are dedicated to making this new program a success. 
Please consider making a donation, buying raffle tickets for a chance to win $2000 or $1000 and/or buying items from the online auction (ends Tuesday October 6th at 5pm).  Go to
HandsLisa Sobke, Restorative Justice Coordinator 
                     Restorative Justice and Forgiveness?
The Restorative Justice Symposium, on September 24-25, was an excellent opportunity to learn more about restorative justice, meet people who practice RJ from around the state and hear and share great stories about RJ.  YouthZone facilitators who attended were Russ Criswell, Annette Ferriole, Tish Filiss, Ray Limoges, along with Lisa Sobke, YouthZone's Restorative Justice Coordinator.  Yampah High School brought 8 students to the conference.    Thursday, September 24, began with Dr. Mark Umbreit's inspiring keynote address on "The Energy of Forgiveness" centered on his experiences surrounding the controversial word "forgiveness" and how forgiveness affects victims and survivors. Following Umbreit's speech, participants spent the rest of the day attending break-out groups on a variety of restorative justice topics.   On Friday, September 25, State Representative Pete Lee discussed restorative justice legislation in Colorado and his passion for bringing change and healing to those whose lives have been affected by violence. Following Lee, Patty Kiefer (see link to article in RJ in the News) and Andy Ulferts spoke about the powerful Victim/Offender Dialog, VOD, they participated in after Andy killed Patty's son ,Elijiah, in a drunk driving accident in 2011. In their emotional recount of the actions that led up to the incident and the VOD that followed, they spoke of the healing that occurred for both the victim and offender following their meeting.
   Facilitator Meeting Update
The facilitator meeting that took place September 2, 2015 resulted in a number of great suggestions for changes to our Script and Restorative Justice Contract.
The alterations to the script included changing the way facilitators are identified to "Facilitator" and "Co-Facilitator". On past scripts the roles were identified as "Co-Facilitator 1" or "COF1" and "Co-Facilitator 2" or "COF2". We also added headings throughout the script to make it clearer which facilitator will be leading specific parts of the circle.
Changes to the Restorative Justice Contract included eliminating the option for multiple clients on one contract and adding more pre-printed information.
If you would like a  copy of the new script or contract, please email me at Thanks to everyone who attended the facilitator meeting and shared their ideas and perspective.
    RJ Quick Tip        
Everyone has needs that they are trying to have filled and the need for trust in others is a basic one. Trust is critical in an RJ circle.  Here are some of the many examples from the RJ Symposium:
  • If the need for trust is not established within the circle, the circle won't be as effective.
  • If the parent/offender relationship is not one of trust, it will be hard to reach an agreeable contract.
  • If the community member is not able to trust the offender, the circle's mission might be compromised
  • The co-facilitators need to have a level of trust to work well together.

 I think it can help us make our circle's most effective if we realize this need and do what is possible to establish trust. 


from Tish Filiss following the RJ Symposium

Lisa Sobke, Restorative Justice Coordinator, (970)274-1049