The Stone Stoup Project


What is our Community Engagement Approach?

The Art of Hosting Conversations That Matter

Throughout this project, our approach has been to engage south suburban stakeholders in figuring out for themselves the best way to bring restorative justice practices into their organizations and communities. The general approach we use is often referred to as the Art of Hosting Conversations that Matter (AoH).

At the heart of this approach is the belief that together we can accomplish more than we can alone, especially when we focus on what matters most. Through intentionally-designed conversations that welcome diverse perspectives, we realize our common hopes and dreams, as well as our collective strengths and wisdom. This then becomes the basis for discerning wise collective action. Together we each take responsibility for the end result by finding ways to contribute what we can. And as we continue to be in good conversation and learning about what works, we find ways to be adaptable and resilient regardless of those things that happen outside of our control. In this way, AoH is a process to support sustainability. For more on the Art of Hosting, visit

Our Engagement Approach and Process

Just as the AoH approach endorses, IBARJP initiated The Project by engaging local restorative justice practitioners and champions in conversations to think together about how to best engage south suburban communities in this unique opportunity.

The Stone Soup Engagement Strategy was developed with leaders from the South Suburban Restorative Justice Coalition. It is based on the 6 Breaths of Process Architecture, an AoH tool that can be used to design individual events and larger initiatives, like The Stone Soup Project. The Stone Soup Engagement Strategy primarily illustrates the key phases, steps and activities associated with Year One of the project.