What is the Circles Campaign?
The National Circles™ Campaign is an initiative that engages communities to join with low-income families as they develop paths out of poverty. The National Circles Campaign was founded in 2008 by Move the Mountain Leadership Center as a response to the issue of generational poverty. Since its inception, the initiative has spread to over 60 sites nationwide. The stories and research from this initiative will be used to inspire and equip national, state, and community leaders to expand their local and national intention and capacity for reducing and, eventually, eliminating poverty.
The National Circles™ Campaign’s three objectives are:
- Assist 1,000 families completely out of poverty.
- Carefully document the steps taken to help them out of poverty and any barriers encountered.
- Assist local, state and national leaders in developing a new social contract that outlines what a community, state, and nation can and should do to assure all hard-working families thrive.
In November of 2006 Clark County Bridges Out of Poverty Steering Committee representatives attended the Bridges Institute and were introduced to Move the Mountain and the Circles™ Champaign. In January 2007, Think Tank introduced the Campaign to the Clark County community and began to build a Guiding Coalition through the partnership and generous support of the Clark County Department of Job and Family Services. We currently have over 100 active members in our community with 21 different circles.
What is a Circle?
A Circle is a supportive, intentional, reciprocal, befriending relationship made up of one Circle Leader who is living in poverty and two to four Circles Allies who usually are from middle class. A Circle typically meets at least twice a month to build friendships and to work on the Circle Leader’s dreams, plans, and goals.
Each Thursday, the Circles Community meets at St. John's Lutheran Church at 5:30 p.m. for a weekly meal and meeting. For more information about Clark County Circles contact Heather Cunningham at email@example.com or (937) 727-9115.