Resilience Circle Stories

Posted November 25, 2014 in Blog, Featured, Resource, Story

On November 18, New England NET hosted a webinar about Resilience Circles, small groups for learning, mutual aid, and social action.

Download the Slides:

Sarah’s Slides (PPT)
Matthew’s Slides
Carrie’s Slides

Resilience Circles Small Groups for Learning, Mutual Aid and Social Action 11-18-14, 1.02 PM from Sarah Byrnes on Vimeo.


Small groups of 8 – 15 people can form Resilience Circles for learning, mutual aid and social action. Circles are a great way to form community, build resilience, and have fun! 
Unemployment and a tough economy are affecting millions of people. Many of us are worried about our financial security, threats to the environment, and more. 
Our challenges are made worse by a culture of isolation and disconnection. The skills we need to build community do not come as naturally as they once did. We can’t afford to be disconnected, because isolated individuals cannot create lasting social change. It’s up to networked communities to do that.

That’s part of why people have been forming small “Resilience Circles” and affinity groups of 8 – 15 people. These groups are exploring a new kind of security based in mutual aid and community support.


Carrie Sonneborn

Carrie SonnebornCarrie Sonneborn helped start a local Resilience Circle as part of the Eiber Neighborhood Association’s push to become the first designated Sustainable Neighborhood under the City of Lakewood’s ‘ Sustainable Neighborhoods Program’. She has worked on sustainability issues for over 20 years both personally and professionally. Carrie is an adjunct professor at the ColoradoSchool of Mines (CSM) in both Liberal Arts & International Studies and Engineering Design Programs.

Dr. Sonneborn’s environmental consulting, publishing and activism work has included projects / employment with the Chicago Climate Exchange Inc. (CCX), American Water Works Association, Rocky Mountain TechLine, PASCO Inc, Institute for Sustainability and Technology Policy (Perth , Western Australia), EcoCarbon, Inc (Perth, Western Australia), Australian Conservation Foundation (Canberra, Australia) Sustainability Energy Industries Council of Australia (Canberra, Australia).  

Matthew Mosher

Matthew Mosher

My wake up moment was in 2005. I was living in Shreveport, Louisiana when Hurricane Katrina hit. I witnessed what happens when the world as you know it ceases to exist. That event started my journey down a path that I am still on today. I knew that I had to always be prepared for emergencies. I have a wife and five children that depend on me to keep them safe. As I continued down this path, the list of thing I have to prepare for keeps getting longer as does the list of things that I have to provide safety from. My journey was leading me to a place of isolation.

As soon as I read an article about the resilience circle movement I knew it was what I had always wanted to be a part of. In April of 2013, I and two others formed the River Country Resilience Circle in Three Rivers, MI. Being part of the resilience circle has definitely helped remove my feeling of isolation and given me a new hope for our future. My main focus within the resilience circle is heirloom gardens and a time bank.