“Jessie facilitated a retreat for the Change Team Committee I was a part of within a non-profit agency. Her portion of the retreat was meant to be a half-day long, but so much was being accomplished in our time with Jessie that we continued with her and threw the agenda out of the window. Jessie's way of facilitating created a feeling of peace. There was a new possibility to heal and move forward within our team.” ~ A. Barlow, MSW. Change Team Member (Conflict & Repair/Healing Circle)
"It's been a pleasure working with Jessie to explore Circle work at Chrysalis. Jessie is authentic, informative, and a great facilitator! It was so helpful to learn the context for Circle work and then be able to actually be part of Circles at our agency. Jessie was committed to helping us figure out how Circle work fit into our agency and with our company culture. Jessie is flexible and fun to work with. This was a great starting point for us as we take a deeper dive into this important process."
~ Dani Rischall, Executive Director, Chrysalis Inc. (Peacemaking Circles and Conflict & Repair Facilitation trainings)
"The training I received from Collective Voices has completely reshaped the communication in my program for the better. I primarily work with at-risk Native American youth, some with severe behavioral issues. Implementing Circles (and allowing our teens to call for them) has empowered our kids to slow down in time of conflict, listen, gain empathy, restore relationships and diffuse emotionally "high stakes" situations. The training I received from Jessie has facilitated healing and helped this community begin the process of repairing intergenerational harm. Jessie as a trainer is fantastic! She has strong intercultural awareness and creates an environment that is safe, accepting, and encouraging for all. I am grateful for the training I received from Collective Voices and to have a resource like Jessie Kushner." (Peacemaking and Conflict & Repair Facilitation trainings)
~ K. Rosenthal P.G.D, MM, BM. Equine Specialist, Muckleshoot Behavioral Health and Family & Youth Services Program
"I appreciated getting to know all of my co-workers and that in a restorative framework, explanations are not seen as excuses. I learned the value of the restorative framework - stop, listen, reflect, then speak. I am now aware what a framework is - the attitude and value system with which one approaches conflict and people. A dominant framework of interaction only allows for one voice and one opinion. This means only one person: "gets" to be right, to talk about the harmed they have experience, or be heard. A restorative way of relating allows for actual healing and getting unstuck."
~ Child care center (Restorative Practices curriculum training)
"Jessie has been invited to do numerous trainings and conflict/repair Circles with our staff over the past years. She has facilitated Peacemaking Circles and helped our staff process conflict through listening sessions, reflection, and restorative practices. Jessie's ability to remain supportive and encourage safe space during extremely challenging times among staff has been transformational. Our culture at Connections Counseling is the pulse of how we provide services for our community, therefore we each must do our own work both individually and collectively. Jessie is able to maintain neutrality while allowing each staff to find compassion and vulnerability so we can move through turbulent times and find our heartfelt mission of authenticity and truth. In my 25 years as a leader, I am especially grateful to Collective Voices for providing the skills, resources, and support for our staff to grow and thrive. Our tagline is "Together We Recover" and reaching out to professionals such as Jessie creates the fabric for restoration. Thank you."
~ Shelly Dutch, CSAC, ICS. Founder & Director of Connections Counseling for over 20 years, Co-Founder of Horizon High School, and Founder of the Recovery Foundation.
"Our Family and Youth Department wanted to bring in Restorative Circle practices to our family counseling and youth interactions. We had worked with Jessie in the past on other projects, and since her work ethic and quality is second to none, we were ecstatic to get her back out here to Washington. The first part of the process was working towards integrating cultural components and ensuring the training was complementing the tribe's cultural beliefs and traditions. For Jessie to focus on this first was the right approach, and it doesn't happen often when outsiders come to the community. The Collective Voices training was designed to meet our specific needs and discipline. She worked extensively on the front end to ensure what she was training us on was what we were looking for. After the success we have with our families and our youth with these practices, we are looking to bring her back for more training and implementation. I would highly recommend what she does and her process of training." (Peacemaking and Conflict & Repair Facilitation trainings)
~ D, Whiteaker, SUDP. Muckleshoot Behavioral Health and Family & Youth Services Program
"Conflict is necessary and not something to be afraid of and that it is necessary for positive peace. I learned specific tools for how to approach and transform conflicts and differences of opinions with my co-workers."
~ Child care center (Restorative Practices curriculum training)
"Until this training, I had never heard about the differences between a restorative and dominant framework in one's approach to people, conflict, and healing. I learned that even in heated arguments and differences of opinion, if a restorative framework is used, mutual respect and understanding can be upheld." ~ Child care center (Restorative Practices curriculum training)
"The Community-Building/Conflict & Repair Facilitation was necessary for our group to get through some very difficult times. We did not have trust, we could not have open dialogue, and at times it was even toxic and difficult to attend meetings. We all wanted things to get better but we didn’t really know how. I am grateful we were able to go through the circle because we were finally able to be open and honest in a way that didn’t feel hurtful, we were able to think about others perspectives with empathy, and take responsibility for hurt we may have unintentionally caused others. I feel closer and more trusting of my colleagues because of this process and would recommend it for any type of conflict. We are now able to move forward and do the work we need to do with new tools and a sense of renewed trust and energy! I would say that I learned a lot about non violent communication and the benefits of using a restorative framework in order to build relationships and handle conflict and repair. Through Jessie's facilitation, it was clear she had a lot of experience with different groups and she was able to read what we needed as a group very well so we could get the outcomes we were hoping for."
~ Change Team staff member; community-based nonprofit
"Today I learned a lot about my team! I learned a lot about their lives and personalities. I learned the importance of hearing ALL sides of every situation, especially when dealing with conflict." ~ Child care center (Restorative Practices training)
"I found our team portion challenging because I wanted to bring something up I was sure would upset someone. I did. And it didn't!" ~ Child care center (Restorative Practices curriculum training)
"Jessie did a wonderful job facilitating our group's Healing Circle. She was able to establish, in such a beautiful way, a solid foundation for our staff to be vulnerable with one another. She intentionally incorporated some skill development so that we all walked away with a couple of tools to utilize within our future work. She was humble, patient and passionate with her approach and we were so very pleased with the successful outcome."
~ Change Team Staff member; community-based nonprofit
From Direct Care Participants:
"I’m really grateful that I met you. You are not only a great resource for clients, but you’ve also had an impact on me as a professional. Every now and then, I believe it’s important that I evaluate how I’m doing with self-care, areas for improvement in my practice, and needing to gain more knowledge. Most of the time, it’s particular clients that remind me it’s time to do that. In this case, it was another provider. I definitely hope we continue to have chances to work together."
~ Case Worker & Substance Abuse Counselor
"Jessie was a wonderful facilitator for our Conflict & Repair Facilitation. She helped us to communicate effectively with one another so that we could work through the issues at hand. Jessie provided a comfortable safe space for us to express the things we needed to express. She also helped to offer tools and frameworks to help with future communication issues that might arise as well as a communication maintenance plan for our family. We are so thankful to have had an opportunity to work with her and are grateful for the immense help she provided our family."
~ Parent of 4 sons (Family Circles and Conflict & Repair Dialogue)
"Jessie has worked with my family on and off for over 10 years in the capacity of facilitating Family Circles. She has the unique ability to see beyond the noise to the heart of an issue, and to guide with compassion and honesty through truly difficult struggles. I can recommend her services without reservation!" ~ Mother (Family Circles)