In the spring of 2018, Lucy Funkhouser was pursuing her Masters in Social Work Degree through the University of Maine, and she approached me about the possibility of completing her nine-month generalist internship with RJP. To be candid, I actively discouraged her at first; "you seem great", I said, "but you're working, parenting and going to school... plus an internship based out of an office an hour-long drive from where you live? That seems like so much!" She took a deep breath: "I believe in this," she said, "I want to make it happen."
Lucy jumped in with both feet. She shuttled back and forth from Knox County to Waldo County multiple times a week. She represented RJP at an international RJ conference in Vermont soon after beginning her internship. She conducted outreach to harmed parties; connected with teens and their parents and guardians at kitchen tables across the midcoast; she entered data; she attended court; she conducted outreach; she boldly shared her perspectives in staff meetings. She breathed RJ. And, as she did, she carried messages of possibility, resilience and healing with her. She offered that the antidote to heartache, to trauma, to disconnection... is practical; it's a community showing up to address its own harms and needs and to care for its own.
At the conclusion of her internship, we were pleased to offer her a very part-time role (five-hours a week!) as the first ever Knox County juvenile Community Resolution Coordinator. (Previously, Knox RJ was coordinated out of the Belfast office). She accepted. In this capacity, Lucy has helped to establish a local presence for restorative practice in the Knox County area. She facilitated restorative justice processes; she connected volunteer facilitators with harms in need of repair; she introduced volunteer mentors to individuals receptive to support; she networked; she helped launch drop-in circles of support for mothers in recovery; she supported grants; she thought collaboratively with citizens about what community justice looks like and means.
As many of you are aware, Lucy graduated last week with her degree and is studying for her certification exam. She's accepted a full time position offering *HCT or Home and Community Treatment through Community Care - a nonprofit offering a variety of support services across the state of Maine. Happily, she'll be working in the greater Rockland area, so many of the relationships she's forged will simply take on a new dimension.
Thank you so much for your skills and your heart these past couple of years Lucy! We are so proud that you'll bring your restorative approach to the work ahead of you!
*Home and Community Based Treatment (HCT) is an intensive family-based therapy program that provides children and parents with support from a Licensed Clinician and a Behavioral Health Professional (BHP) to assist in managing mental health and behavioral needs of their child, and increasing the caregivers’ confidence and skill set to do so. The service is provided in the family’s home, and occasionally within the community depending on the treatment needs of the child. The HCT service is typically a 3-6 month service. HCT is intensive and is often in the home within the range of 4-10 hours a week.