By Tara Fort
For Jessica Stickel, co-founder of Full Circle: Connecting Girls mentoring group, witnessing girls achieving their potential with confidence and self-worth has been the highlight of forming the non-profit she helped establish earlier this year. Full Circle is designed for girls ages 10 through 18 to talk about anything and everything. Says Stickel, “Our goal is to create connections for girls through conversations—by connecting them to self, one another, their community, and to resources—by giving them an inspired space to share, ultimately allowing them to feel more connected to life and a sense of wholeness. It is such a gift to watch these girls come ‘full circle’ by paying it forward to their peers.”
Prescott’s Full Circle started in April 2018 as a vision when a small group of dedicated women met to discuss forming a group where girls could feel comfortable talking about themselves, their lives and their challenges. In January 2019, a Board of Directors was created, and the non-profit was officially put into action. Full Circle is structured as a roundtable discussion group where, for 50 minutes once a week, young women can discuss issues that are important and relevant to them. The mentors, who are on hand to facilitate but not lead the discussions, focus on helping girls develop communication and thought skills.
Stickel, whose student success coaching program with the Prescott Unified School District (PUSD) has remained popular with students, sees alignment between Full Circle and the coaching program in the District. In both roles, Stickel helps students develop themselves through practice and focus. In a survey taken among 14 girls who participated in the Full Circle program in 2019, data shows that the program has the potential to continue in the coming years. Of the girls surveyed, most of them would change nothing about Full Circle and enjoyed discussing a full spectrum of topics. From a percentage perspective, 71% found “being a part of something” the most useful of the time spent in the Circle; 78% enjoyed the “weekly check-in with emotions;” and 85% found “recognizing and using your voice” to be the most impactful part of the session. Girls in the group also asserted that they improved in areas where they might not have achieved success otherwise such as enhanced communication skills, advanced IQ scores, feeling supported and maintaining better time management.
For community members who would like to support Full Circle, monetary donations are accepted by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org. Those who would like to be involved as mentors and/or to join the Board should visit Facebook at “Full Circle: Connecting Girls” or attend meetings at the Prescott Library on the 3rd Wednesday of the month at 6 p.m. once the Library allows for gatherings again.