(Online) Restorative Practices Program

a circle of chairs on a grassy lawn with the sun setting in the backgroundPROGRAM DESCRIPTION

Today’s best thinking in leadership, education, and change management emphasize the need to create spaces where people feel seen, heard, and part of a community that cares. Whether you are a teacher, parent, principal, health care provider or authority figure, you can benefit from restorative practices. Over the course of this program, you’ll be part of a supportive learning group on a fulfilling journey of growth and change. 

Through discussions, exercises and other practical activities you’ll deepen your knowledge of the philosophy behind restorative practices. You’ll also gain techniques to build strong, connected cultures. When conflict occurs you’ll have non-adversarial problem-solving tools to reach solutions that build safer, healthier, more equitable environments.

Practice new ways of relating to people and holding power. Instead of experiencing resistance and avoidance or having to rely on lecturing, scolding and threatening interventions, the systematic use of restorative practices will leave you and the people you interact with feeling connected to positive, resilient and accountable communities.

Learn firsthand from people and organizations already using restorative practices in their everyday life and work. Hear from criminal justice professionals, teachers and others who are using restorative practices to transform their organizations and outcomes.

A social science that studies how to improve and repair relationships between people and communities, restorative practices can help build healthy communities, increase social capital, decrease crime and antisocial behavior, repair harm and restore relationships.

Restorative practices have deep roots in indigenous peacemaking and knowledge. Global indigenous communities have a long-standing history of living in alignment with what we now refer to as restorative justice and restorative practices. The indigenous roots of these systems are not monolithic—indigenous communities practice circles and justice in different ways. Part of honoring this work means we must stay humble, knowing that these practices came before us and will outlast us.



2022 Sessions

Session 2
May 26 & 27, Jun 24, Jul 21 & 22, Aug 19, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. ET (Full)


If these dates don’t work for you or if the programs fill, sign up for the interest list and you’ll be among the first to know when a new program is announced. Thanks for your patience.

Five people sitting in circle around colorful tablecloth in the park by the bay in Belfast, Maine on a sunny day                                               


Taught synchronously via Zoom. Participants will need access to stable internet.

The Hutchinson Center has a limited number of computers (and plenty of Wi-Fi to go around). If you’d like to participate virtually via the Hutchinson Center, please request support via the form here.



Participants will:

  • Acquire a strong theoretical foundation in restorative practices that have been proven to enhance both personal and professional spheres
  • Develop the skills necessary to facilitate proactively and repair harm
  • Have access to planning tools and resources tailored to your specific needs
  • Gain techniques to build strong, connected cultures
  • Learn problem-solving tools to reach solutions that build safer, healthier and more equitable environments
  • Practice new ways of relating to people, and organizations
  • Improve decision-making and leadership skills.
  • Gain access to future support and development opportunities to become an in-house resource for restorative practices

Participants will also benefit from building connections with other professionals who are committed to living the values and principles of restorative practices.



In the first two-day session you’ll learn about the basics of restorative practice: the philosophy, mindset, tools and practices that make up a restorative toolbox including the use of restorative dialogue and community circles.

Subsequent sessions will provide opportunities to dive deeper into topic areas that interest you most and get feedback and support from instructors and peers.

  • Day 1: Restorative Philosophy and Mindset
  • Day 2: Community-Building Circles
  • Day 3: Circle-Keeping Skills
  • Day 4: Conflict and Repairing Harm
  • Day 5: Circle-Keeping Skills II
  • Day 6: Implementation Planning


Participants from a variety of fields will benefit from this dynamic program, including

  • Teachers, educators, administrators of primary, secondary and post-secondary schools
  • Social workers and family services workers
  • Corrections, criminal justice and policing
  • Nonprofit organizations
  • Healthcare workers
  • Community development workers

This program uses a team-based model. To benefit the most from the efforts of your restorative practice, participating groups should form teams including at least three to five people from your business/community group/organization/school. At least one team member should be an administrator and your team should be representative of your school or organization’s diverse community. Those not associated with an institution will be partnered with other individuals for team-based work.

Not sure if this program is right for you? Contact us at um.fhc.pd@maine.edu or 207.338.8002 and we can help you figure it out.



Restorative Justice Project

Photo of white woman smiling, dark backgroundSarah Matari (she/her/hers) began providing restorative practices and mediation services to institutions and communities early on in her alternative dispute resolution career. As a trainer and consultant for the NYC Department of Education restorative pilot project, she delivered mediation and restorative circle trainings to staff and students in an effort to help schools work towards restorative culture change. She learned first hand the importance of having a sustainable implementation strategy and team approach when engaging with restorative practices and brings that experience in her directing of RJPM’s Training and Capacity Building Team.

White woman standing in a field at sunset, smiling in to camera

Louise Marks (she/her/hers) is interested in the use of circle practice as a means of centering relationships and building community. Louise sees restorative practices playing a role in elevating marginalized voices and hopes to contribute to the field of restorative justice as it relates to broader equity work. She was introduced to circle practice and restorative philosophy at Bates College. Her background in community art and sociology sparked an interest in community justice and the use of restorative practices as a means of shifting punitive culture to restorative. Louise is currently serving as Restorative Practices Coordinator at the Maine Coastal Regional Reentry Center, where she gets to engage in paradigm-shifting work using RJPMs culture change model. She brings this experience as an institutional trainer, coach, and practitioner to her role as a visionary on RJPM’s Training and Capacity Building Team.

Black man wearing suit with yellow tie standing in front of capitol building

Jamar Williams (he/him/his) arrived in August of 2021 with enthusiasm as a trainer on the Training and Capacity Building Team of RJP Maine. He has extensive experience in various aspects of the prison reentry field and has leveraged his expertise to educate others in universities, institutions and conferences across the country. Jamar’s focus on social and restorative justice has led him to relocate to Maine to train others on restorative justice practices. When he is not motivating others through speeches or helping them to live a life of purpose, he can be found participating in any kind of exercise. Bicycling, reading, writing, and going for walks are ways that he rounds out his day. Jamar also enjoys gathering around food with others as he exercises his culinary skills in the kitchen.



$900 per person for the six-session program and includes materials, including Peacemaking Circles: From Conflict to Community, by Kay Pranis and a restorative justice manual.

Click here for more information about paying for your professional development, including information about need-based scholarships, group discounts and tips on how to get your employer on board.

Current UMaine students are eligible for a 20% discount. Use code STUDENT20 at checkout.



20 per session



4.2 CEUs/42 contact hours

If you’d like to receive CEUs for participating in this course, please note this in your registration via our online store.



For guaranteed transference of skills, ask about Restorative Justice Practices’ proven 1:1 coaching methods to support your training after the program itself has finished. For more information, contact smatari@rjpmidcoast.org.



For more information or to request an accommodation contact Michelle Patten, Conference and Professional Development Coordinator, um.fhc.pd@maine.edu; 207.338.8002.

A drawing featuring favorite places of recent RJP participants in the midcoast Maine area
A compilation drawing of recent Restorative Practices participants’ favorite places, created by Louise Marks.


Interested in customizing a professional development program for your business, organization or team?

We can help you create an exclusive professional development program that meets your dynamic needs. Learn more.


“I have found it far easier to avoid jumping into an emotionally driven response and instead be able to respond from a more empathetic, better-clarified place. I have also become quite clear within myself that peace, civility, etc. are where my heart lies.” past participant