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Building Your Abolitionist Toolkit: Everyday Resources for a Punishment-Free World

Abolitionist Toolbox

This fall, join Project NIA and friends as we assemble our abolitionist toolkits. In this series, we will explore six different resources that help us build daily practices to move us closer to a world free of imprisonment, policing, and surveillance. Together, we will learn how we can use abolitionist organizing tools and values in our relationships, our homes, our schools, our organizations, and our communities. We will consider how we can deepen discussions about justice, harm, and healing, and we will dive into active ways that we can work towards an abolitionist future that includes everyone.

Unless otherwise noted, events will be held on Thursdays from 6:30 to 8:30 PM ET. All events will include live closed-captioning and ASL interpretation. For more information, questions, or accessibility requests, please contact

Para obtener más información, preguntas o solicitudes de accesibilidad, por favor contacte

For each session, we strongly recommend reading the resources beforehand. If you don’t have familiarity with the material, your experience of the sessions will be diminished.

Building Your Abolitionist Toolkit: Everyday Resources for a Punishment-Free World

Restorative Justice at Home

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Restorative Justice at Home

Join Restorative Justice practitioner Jennifer Viets to explore her new resource, “Talking Circles At Home and Parenting Restoratively.” How can we use family Talking Circles to deepen our closest relationships with honest and open communication? What would it mean to intentionally create our own family values? What is a restorative conversation and how can we use them to practice naming as well as repairing harm with everyone in our household? What is the value of a Peace Corner for children and adults, and how can we build one?

Presenter: Jennifer Viets

Jennifer Viets (she/her/hers) is a Restorative Justice practitioner both in community and in Chicago Public Schools. In her role as a Restorative Practices Coach, she works with all members of a school community to build relationships and employ restorative responses to harm. With an emphasis on using the arts to “reach, teach, and heal,” she has worked as a multi-disciplinary teaching artist and arts administrator for children and families for the past 30 years. Jennifer is also the mother and mother-in-law of four grown people, and a practicing Abolitionist. She is currently leading virtual circles for teachers, parents, and community members.

Fumbling Towards Repair Practice Session

Saturday, October 10, 2020
2:00 to 4:30 PM ET

Have you purchased the “Fumbling Towards Repair” workbook co-authored by Mariame and Shira? Are you interested in digging into the resource with them? During this session, Mariame and Shira will answer questions that Community Accountability (CA) process facilitators have and will guide you through a couple of the activities in the workbook. This session is ONLY for CA facilitators who have a copy of the workbook and want a space of practice.

Presenters: Shira Hassan & Mariame Kaba, Just Practice Collaborative

The Just Practice Collaborative is a training and mentoring group focused on sustaining a community of practitioners that provide community-based accountability and support structures for all parties involved with incidents and patterns of sexual, domestic, relationship, and intimate community violence. This group and practice is a resource and a model for those who want to address violence without reliance on criminal legal and traditional social services.

Shira Hassan has trained and spoken nationally on the sex trade, harm reduction, self-injury, group work and healing, and transformative justice. Currently working as a consultant and coach, Shira offers program development and design, grassroots fundraising, participatory evaluation/action research, and assistance creating sustainable, healing centered and trauma-informed environments within organizations.

Mariame Kaba is the founder and director of Project NIA, a grassroots organization with a long-term vision to end youth incarceration. She has been active in the anti-criminalization and anti-violence movements for the past 30 years. For more information, visit

Creating Community in Classrooms

Thursday, October 22, 2020

As education evolves to meet the demands of a new era, we are all learning, socializing, and working in digital spaces more often. Sharing physical space has new limits, too. Online or in person, how we teach, learn, parent, facilitate, and lead are all changing in indelible ways. How do we create nurturing, productive, and transformative spaces for learning, work, and growth? What are the building blocks for sharing space and how can we use them to address our needs as learners and educators? In this session, we will use the resource “How To Share Space” as a springboard to explore the opportunities presented by these changing norms and the challenges they bring. This is an interactive meeting, with time to question, analyze, and create — so come prepared to participate!

Presenters: Atom Fire Arts Cooperative

Atom Fire Arts Cooperative is a group of dedicated educators, artists, learners, and their supporters imagining the future of education together. How to Share Space: Creating Community in Classrooms and Beyond is a resource that comes out of our research and experience in building worlds with others. We study and seek new ways to implement best practices like trauma-informed care and transformative justice models in order to create learning spaces that allow people to be their fullest and most engaged whole selves.