The Stone Stoup Project


"The Stone Soup Project is making a great impact on the south suburban Cook County area.....interests are sparked by elected officials who seek the assistance of this collaborative work. People are looking for solutions to resolve conflicts in their schools, communities, and homes; Stone Soup supports these efforts through training, cafes, and meet and greets. "
Shaniqua Jones, MA - AmeriCorp VISTA and PhD student

How can I get involved?

Stone Soup Community of Practice

People who live and work in the south suburbs are involved in the Stone Soup Project in a variety of ways through our community of practice. A community of practice is a group of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly (Etienne Wenger, The Stone Soup Community of Practice (SS CoP) is composed of individuals who support restorative practice in different ways and to varying degrees in their work, communities and lives. Each member contributes to the expansion of RJ in the south suburbs in ways that fit their interests, needs, and ability to be involved.

Circles of Engagement

The Circles of Engagement Model is a graphic depiction of our community of practice. It is one way we invite others who are interested in restorative justice to identify how they want to get involved.

At the center of the model is our purpose - to address our key goals through the expansion and deepening of restorative justice practices throughout the south suburbs. Our purpose is in the center because it is shared. Each person and group contributes what they can to support this purpose.

The concentric circles that radiate out from the core purpose illustrate different forms and levels of involvement in the community of practice and the Project. Each level is significant and represents different and important aspects of the work that are necessary for success.

The first concentric circle out from the center represents the Core Team – the small group of people who are most involved with holding the intention of the project long-term and who work together to see that the core functions of the project are carried out. The core team also pays attention to what’s happening in the south suburbs so that they can support emerging opportunities to expand RJ. The Core Team includes people who serve as Primary Project Conveners. There is also a Core Team specifically focused on expanding RJ in Calumet City because of developing interest and emerging leaders. If you are interested in learning more about this Core Team, please contact us.

RJ Practitioners/Champions are at the next level of involvement. This group is actively working to expand RJ in the south suburbs and they participate regularly in Stone Soup CoP meetings and events. RJ practitioners are people who are using RJ practices in their work in the south suburbs. RJ Champions are people who may or may not be RJ practitioners but who perform other critical roles to advance RJ. For example, Champions promote RJ in their organizations or communities, provide RJ training and supports, and contribute in-kind and other types of resources to support the project.

Local Supporters are people who may not have an active role in the Stone Soup project but are people who believe in RJ and the Stone Soup project. They may or may not be RJ practitioners. These are people who track the project through their participation in the Stone Soup list serv, periodically attend Stone Soup CoP meetings and events, and/or get involved when asked.

South Suburban communities are included in our model because anyone who lives and/or works in the south suburbs is welcome to join the Project. Prior knowledge or experience with RJ is not necessary. All you need is a desire to reduce delinquency, increase youth development, and make south suburban communities safer.

To learn more about how you can get involved, contact us.