At STR8-UP, 10,000 Little Steps to Healing Inc, community sharing circles and connection are at the heart of all their work. As folks transition out of gang and criminal lifestyles, connecting with others on the journey of healing and recovery allows members to build new and healthy relationships, and to build new lives apart from gangs. As we look for ways to stop the spread of Covid 19 in our community, while also supporting our members, STR8-UP had to stop their in-person supports, sharing circles and meetings. Instead, they, reached out to the community for support and changed their service delivery model to continue top be able to connect. Video sharing circles, phone based counselling for those in the community and in correctional settings, delivering personal hygiene packs, and holding online 12-step discussion groups.
Along with challenges, there have also been some unexpected perks, reaching new demographics of people. For the first time ever, members living outside the city and on reserves have been able to access and participate in our circles in real time with those in Saskatoon. New mothers are able to log in to discussions and participate while at home with their infants.
Members have been able to showcase the art that they are making in their homes and workshops, and share their personal strategies for staying clean and staying positive while building a new life.
Most of all, this time has shown the courage and strength the members have, and their commitment to changing their lives, while supporting each other through each new challenge they face.