Category Archives: Circle of Friends

Intermountain Teens host healing drum circle at Hill Valley Clinic

More than 40 people gathered at the Hill Country Clinic on Wednesday evening November 14 to participate in a healing drum circle sponsored by the Intermountain Teen Center.

Intermountain Teen Center Healing Drum Circle

The teens invited everyone in community and drew drummers and shakers ranging in age from a young toddler to senior citizens.

This young fellow tried many different instruments

Circle of Friends in Burney brought a bus load and two vans and people came from Round Mountain, Montgomery Creek, and Big Bend. There were lots of drums, shakers, clacking sticks and other rhythm instruments so that everyone was able to participate.

Teen Center Program Coordinator Theresa Callahan welcomed everybody and then introduced experienced drummer Verena Compton, who facilitated the drum circle together with her husband Randy.

Verena began with a prayer in both German and English. She advised people that the African djembes were meant to be played with hands only. Then she began a beat and everyone joined in. After a period of time the drumming came to an end and then Verena or Randy began a new beat for another period. And so it was for one hour as people joined in with djembes, bongos, Native American drums, gourds, shakers, and sticks. The drum circle continued for about one hour.

Twin drummers Britney and Sara

Communal drum circles have existed amongst indigenous people around the world for thousands of years. They began becoming popular in the United States during the counterculture movement in the  late 1960’s. Over the years, it has been found that drumming is therapeutic.

In 1991, during testimony before the United States Senate Special Committee on Aging, Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart stated:

Typically, people gather to drum in drum “circles” with others from the surrounding community. The drum circle offers equality because there is no head or tail. It includes people of all ages. The main objective is to share rhythm and get in tune with each other and themselves. To form a group consciousness. To entrain and resonate. By entrainment, I mean that a new voice, a collective voice, emerges from the group as they drum together.

In his book “The Healing Power of the Drum”, Robert Lawrence Friedman states:

Some of the psychological applications in which hand drums are being used include assisting veterans to release the emotional pain of post-traumatic stress disorder, releasing the pent-up anger and negative emotions of “at-risk” adolescents, and promoting health in corporate executives through releasing their day-to-day stress, in addition to many other applications.

The Intermountain Teen Center plans to host more drum circles for the community in the future.


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Circle of Friends 10th Anniversary Celebration September 12

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September 6, 2018 · 6:16 pm

Circle of Friends 10th Anniversary September 12

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Suicide Prevention Training May 18 at Circle of Friends

Suicide Prevention Training May 18 at Circle of Friends

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Circle of Friends will host Becoming Brave workshop on mental health May 19

Becoming Brave Workshop May 19

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Circle of Friends Christmas Party 2016

The Circle of Friends held a lovely holiday party on December 21.

Lynn Erickson welcomes everyone to the Christmas Party

Lynn Erickson welcomes everyone to the Christmas Party

Lynn Erickson welcomed everyone reading a deep Christmas quotation by Howard W Hunter:

This Christmas mend a quarrel. Seek out a forgotten friend. Dismiss suspicion and replace it with trust. Write a letter. Give a soft answer. Encourage youth. Manifest your loyalty in word and deed. Keep a promise. Forgo a grudge. Forgive an enemy. Apologize. Try to understand. Examine your demands on others. Think first of someone else. Be kind. Be gentle. Laugh a little more. Express your gratitude. Welcome a stranger. Gladden the heart of a child. Take pleasure in the beauty and wonder of the earth. Speak your love, and then speak it again.
― Howard W. Hunter

Then everyone enjoyed a delicious feast of turkey soup, ham, potatoes, tamales, and cranberry sauce. Several people came up from Hill Country clinic to help serve the meal.

During the meal, Dan and Pam Utter played a beautiful selection of Christmas songs. Many joined in the spirit of the occasion to sing “Hark the Herald Angels Sing.”

After the meal, Pam and Dan took a break from the music and Alex Colvin came up and lead more singing of Christmas carols and tunes. Everyone joined in on popular songs such as “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” and “Jingle Bells.”

Michael Bennett sang “Blue Christmas” and Kimberly Michelle sang a lovely song about “Home,” The Utters harmonized beautifully singing “O Come All Ye Faithful.”

Circle of Friends is truly a circle of friends. When one person said, “This is my second time here. I’m really grateful that you had this because I don’t have a lot of friends,” several people immediately responded, “Now you have lots of friends.”

As a wellness center, Circle of Friends hosts numerous programs during the week including crafts, exercise programs, mental health workshops, and addiction recovery groups. Staff at the center also periodically hold classes to help people develop  a personal Wellness Recovery Action Plan. Staff and participants at Circle of Friends have held numerous fundraisers over the past few years that have raised over $10,000 for local charities in Burney.

Anyone wishing to know more can call Lynn Erickson or Chelsea Sabin at 530-335-4222 or stop by the center during the week for a copy of their monthly calendar.

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Circle of Friends offers 8-week WRAP course

Circle of Friends Wellness and Recovery Center is offering an 8-week course to teach the Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP). The course will be taught for eight consecutive Fridays beginning on July 22 and ending on September 9. Each class will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the Circle of Friends center on the corner of Main St. and Tamarack in Burney. There is no charge for the course.

Circle of Friends building at Main and Tamarack

Circle of Friends building at Main and Tamarack

WRAP provides people who are struggling with personal difficulties and stress with “wellness tools” to help them regain and maintain control of their lives. The course helps people to identify triggers and early warning signs so that they can be proactive and avoid crises.

The course also helps people develop healthy habits and techniques such as communicating with friends and supporters, peer counseling, focusing exercises, relaxation and stress reduction techniques, journaling, and engaging in positive activities. A person’s wellness toolkit also includes exercise, diet, and adequate rest.

The program is designed to be used by both individuals and families including teens, adults, and seniors. Key concepts taught are hope, personal responsibility, education, self-advocacy, and support.

For more information or to register, call Lynn Erickson or Chelsea Sabin at 530-335-4221.

A hard copy version of this article also appeared in the Mountain Echo 7/19/16

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