PLYMOUTH — The Circle Program serves girls from 29 towns in New Hampshire, with major hubs in Laconia, Concord and Plymouth. The growth of the Circle Program means reaching more girls geographically, realizing their dreams of a summer camp experience and matching more volunteer mentors with Circle girls. It also means more communities are benefiting from the good works that Circle girls and teens are accomplishing.
With the hioliday season arriving Circle girls and teens are at it again, busy doing community service all over the Lakes Region. A week ago Saturday over twenty Circle girls, with mentors, went to Lakes Region General Hospital for the first year to create cards and deliver them to patients. The following Sunday a group of nine Circle teens and four mentors donated their time, as Friendly Kitchen volunteers, by serving Sunday dinner to 50 Salvation Army church members and some homeless individuals in Laconia. In teams (potato, corn and mea!) the girls layered, cooked and served Shepard's Pie and even had leftovers to serve a youth group for Tuesday. On November 24 a group of Circle teens, for the 13th year, went to a senior housing apartment in Ashland to serve and enjoy a community Thanksgiving dinner.
On December 7 Circle Program Teen Coordinator, Fox Smith, will head up a group of Circle teen "elves" for the Santa Sale in Ashland. This will be the 13th year helping Holderness Library raise funds through this magical event. For the season finale on December 8, Circle's Program Director, Paula Ferenc, will take a large group of girls and mentors to assist the Meredith Rotary Club in serving dinner to three hundred senior citizens, an annual and loved collaboration since Circle's founding year in 1993.
The Circle Program's philosophy is closely aligned with an approach called Positive Youth Development (PYD), which emphasizes building assets and skills. Positive Youth Development is a research-based approach that focuses on promoting healthy developmental potential. The original five C's of PYD are competence, confidence, connections, caring and character. The Circle Program added contribution to form their six C's. Circle girls and teens embrace opportunities to belong and "give back" through their important contribution of community service.