The Women’s Sanctuary Circle can be hosted anywhere and anytime. That’s the whole point! However, a little preparation can help you make the circle a even greater success. We gladly share some of our top tips below.
For a location, we recommend you pick a quiet space, where you can sit comfortably. We played the game outdoors on the beach, but you can also play it in a living room and even in a office space (but take some more time to set the stage, so that people can feel relaxed and free from work).
A comfortable number of participants varies between 4 women and a maximum of 12. This allows for every woman to participate actively and share her story and reflections.
The game can be easily created by you, with items that most of you will know where to find. This is our list:
- Paper, markers, colors, pens – to create the cards
- A few stones/pine cones/shells/feathers – just pick whatever is available in your surroundings
- A scarf or plaid or other materials to create a circle on the floor/ground in which you put down the cards and other items
- Circle centerpiece (a candle, a couple of round stones, something that is meaningful to you) to put in the center of the circle
- Optional: talking piece to guide the conversation (we used a simply decorated stick)
Getting started – instructions before you begin
- Participants are invited to sit in a large circle (mark circle on ground with ribbon/crayon)
- One of the participants takes a moment to share the guiding principles
- The activity consists of an opening, circle activity and closing
- After a short opening, in which you read an opening text and share the guidelines, the person on the left hand side of the facilitator picks a card and reads the text/question /quote/instruction to everyone.
- After reading the text aloud, allow for a moment of silence.
- Most cards are an invitation to share to the person who picks them. Some are an invitation to the group.
- Green cards invite everyone to do a simple movement/exercise together
- Participation and sharing is always voluntary and so you can always pass on a card and move on to the next one. Try to share in wholeness and not only from your mind.
- Continue with the game by picking cards until either everyone had the chance to answer at least one card, you feel that you have played long enough or you reach a previously set time (allow 15 minutes for closing)
Below you may download full instructions and contents of the circle, for free. Enjoy!