Speak Out, Play Out, Action and Relationships
We are currently partnered with Chilliwack Community Services and Vedder Elementary School to facilitate SPAR to all referred students for the 2017/2018 school year.
SPAR Program Description
SPAR includes restorative principles like building community and providing a safe opportunity for dialogue. Chilliwack Restorative Justice and Youth Advocacy Association has partnered with Chilliwack Community Services to implement a preventative program for youth by connecting them with supportive adults in their community and by providing them with a safe space where ideas and concerns can be shared.
The first part of SPAR is facilitated in a circle, the way people in many cultures have traditionally come together to share stories and talk about important issues. Everyone sits together in a circle to discuss the day's topic. Sitting in a circle can remove any barriers, as well allows for everyone to see each other in the circle. A talking piece is also used allowing only the person who has the talking piece to talk to ensure respectful listening and sharing.
During the circle time, there will be activities that are based on the day's lesson plan. These activities will help to ground learning and have the students develop a greater understanding of themselves and others.
The second portion of SPAR will engage the youth in pro-social recreational activities. These activities will be purposeful and relate to the topics that are covered in the Circle component. The recreational activities work to develop life skills in the youth, such as leadership, risk management, discipline, problem solving, teamwork and resiliency.
By the group working together in the recreation activities— they will begin to put to practice the life skills being taught throughout the program. This will allow the youth to apply the skills learned, further reinforcing them. The goal of SPAR is that by practice and reflection, the youth will permanently incorporate these skills in their lives.
Post Program Follow-up
Staff and youth will work together to connect youth to the community through mentorship and volunteer opportunities. Youth will also be given opportunities for self-reflection that will challenge them to evaluate everything they are learning, but also how they want to change for the better.