Delivering circles of support and accountability to protect communities from sexual harm and sexual reoffending


AGM Celebrates Volunteers

Circles South West gathered for their Annual General Meeting on September 20th 2023, bringing staff, trustees, volunteers and supporters together.

The Annual General Meeting took place, as always, in Taunton – the mid point of our region and we were delighted to welcome so many people, despite the terrible weather and road conditions.

Amongst the highlights we were once again fortunate enough to feature a core member from one of our circles, to speak about how Circles has assisted him and deliver a ‘service user’ testimony of our work.

Two of our coordinators presented on our Inform Young People Programme. The programme is a short intervention (10 hours) for young people (13–21 years) who have displayed Tech-Assisted Harmful Sexual Behaviour. The presentation discussed two case studies and the positive feedback from those involved.

We were so happy to welcome Jude Thomas, the National Programme Manager from Circles UK, who discussed briefly the recent audit that Circles South West attained 95.4% She had some very encouraging comments and it was a pleasure for us to hear directly from Circles UK about our work.

It was an exciting moment as well to launch our new promotional film. The film is regularly shown to new volunteers and interested partied alike and features interviews with volunteers and PCCs from around the region. The new film also includes additions by Research In Practice who talk about our ongoing research and evaluation of our work.

This year we were delighted to launch our new Volunteer Long Service Awards – awarded to volunteers who have been with us for 10 years, or have completed 10 circles. Six volunteers were honoured this year and we will be continuing this next year.

One of the volunteers who received the award was Alan, a Dorset volunteer, who said:

“Without you all and all other volunteers I have done Circles with, my commitment would not been possible.”

Alan was presented with his award by our Chair of the Board, Kieran McCartan and our volunteer coordinator, Lucy Graham, spoke about the volunteers who couldn’t be with us on the day. Their awards are now safely with them, including a huge thank you from us for their hard work and dedication.

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