Exploring Restorative Justice
Season 2, Episode 1
Challenging traditional punitive measures, host Klee explores restorative justice with guest Tamara Sheppard. They embark on a journey that breaks down how restorative justice creates a transformative platform for those affected by harm. By encouraging accountability in place of punishment, they highlight the power of this approach and its potential to reshape re-entry into classrooms, summer camps, and numerous other contexts.
But they don't stop there, Klee and Tamara discuss the pivotal role of trust and the unique opportunities restorative justice circles offer to the youth to witness the impact of their actions. As Tamara Sheppard enlightens us on how these circles can cultivate a comfortable atmosphere promoting trust, you'll also see how they can be employed to advance communication and collaboration in the workplace.
If you’ve been curious about how restorative justice can support youth, this is the podcast for you.
Producer EmJ’s takeaways:
Pre-work is just as important as the circle itself.
Doing circles doesn't negate consequences for the person who did the harm.
Everyone involved should be opting into the circle and have that choice, otherwise it could worsen the situation.
Tamara has been employed as a school social worker for over 12 years and is an adjunct professor in the Rochester, NY community. She has also worked as an emergency department social worker, cancer support group facilitator and a university counseling center therapist. In these roles, Tamara has provided crisis intervention and supports, individual and group counseling, facilitated restorative circles, completed mental health assessments and conducted various workshops for students, families, staff and colleagues.
Tamara obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from SUNY Geneseo in 2005. She later obtained a Master of Social Work degree in 2008 from SUNY Brockport, a Master of Science in Education (M.S. Ed in school counseling) in 2018 and acquired her clinical social work license in 2020. In the fall of 2022, she began her pursuits of an Educational Administration Certificate of Advanced Study (CAS) with an expected graduation date in the Summer of 2024. Tamara is also an active member of the praise and worship and prayer teams at her church and co-leads the social activities ministry.
Passionate about making an impact, Allison Klee graduated from SUNY New Paltz summa cum laude in three years with a degree in Human Services. Allison is an honors program alumna and completed her thesis, titled “The Benefits of Summer Camps for Underserved Youth: A Circle of Courage Framework,” in her senior year.
She has worked at Camp Stomping Ground since 2016 and has fallen in love with the community, the mission, and – most of all – each camper she had a chance to play with or help work through a difficult situation. Not satisfied with the way things had always been done, she has driven Stomping Ground’s storytelling, parent communication, and staff recruitment to the next level. She helps other camps onboard their staff, facilitates restorative justice trainings in partnership with The Summer Camp Society, is an avid volunteer in her community, and is never willing to settle for “good enough.” Allison continues to make more possible for Stomping Ground and the greater camp industry.
Allison is currently working as a school social worker blending her academic background with her camp background in future pursuits advocating for and supporting kids in her community.
The Summer Camp Society Podcast is edited and produced by EmJ Juszczyk.