“One of the most important things you can do on this earth is to let people know they are not alone.”
~ Sharon L. Adler
 

Dear Expecting and New Families,
 
I am sad to announce that due to the impact of COVID-19, during July and August 2020, Open Circle will be temporarily canceling all yoga and dance classes, as well as massage and acupuncture sessions. 
 
As the director of the center, I am working during that time to envision a new model for offering the many pregnancy and parenting supports families have come to know us for over the past 17 years. As we all learn to live over the long term in a pandemic, it is vital that Open Circle’s offerings are safe for families, accessible, and sustainable for the practitioners and the Center.
 
Like many micro-businesses based on in-person services, Open Circle has been intensely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. I initially moved everything we were able into an online format, and we have spent the last three+ months offering a full schedule of birth education and pregnancy and parent and baby yoga classes, at a “pay as you’re able” basis.
 
Unfortunately, these changes have resulted in a loss of revenue which has made it impossible to cover our operating costs, including rent, and were forced to move out of our beautiful studio in East Providence. (We may be able to move in again in November). However, the current requirements for reopening provided by the Department of Health (to offer in-person classes and therapies) would be challenging for pregnant and new families and may or may not be adequate to preventing COVID-19 infection. Additionally, they would require a reduction of class size and private session openings that would continue to make it hard if not impossible to pay our overhead.
 
As such, we are tasked to think creatively on how to move forward. We will continue to post updates here over the coming months, with ways you can get involved to support our continued work in developing safe ways to support new families. We hope to be able to see you all in the fall, either online or in person, and until then wish you and your family health and the continued support of community and loved ones.
 
Warmly,
Kaeli Sutton
Director
 
 
 
 
Childbearing and parenting can bring the most beautiful moments of life…and the most absurd and heartbreaking. And with regularity, they bring every experience in-between. This is true for all parents, and yet, so often, mothers or fathers feel that they must be alone in their struggles and triumphs. Sharing our experiences with other parents can remind us that we are not alone in this journey, and can teach us that the support of community is an invaluable resource along the long road of parenting.
 

Open Circle is working with partner professionals to offer facilitated community groups that support families in their journey through conception pregnancy, birth, and parenting, as well as in illness and loss.

Open Circle for the 4th Trimester

CURRENTLY BEING OFFERED REMOTELY:To sign up and receive more information, please email info@agroterrabirth.com

The first three months after the birth of a baby (often referred to as the 4th trimester) are often the most stressful and tender weeks in the life of a family. Learning to feed and soothe your newborn, recover from pregnancy and birth, and deal with the intensity of shifting relationships and identity can be a huge challenge. Open Circle offers a safe and nurturing space for finding your footing in the new life that welcoming a baby brings. With an emphasis on mindful self-compassion, resource building and practical solutions to support your new life as a parent.

Lisa Gendron guides this peer-to-peer support group with enormous respect for the difficulties facing new parents. She seeks to help parents in developing self-care practices and coping techniques to adjust to the challenges of the 4th trimester.

Offered on ZOOM weekly on Wednesdays, from 10:00 am to 12:00 pm. Best suited for parents with babies ages 3 weeks-6 months.

DATES + REGISTER
Weekly ZOOM calls
Wednesdays 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Email info@agroterrabirth.com to enroll.

TIMES
10:00 am – 12:00 pm

COST
$20 ($5-$15 IBP)

Open Circle for Mindful Parenting

3/22/20
THIS GROUP WILL BE OFFERED REMOTELY IN THE NEXT FEW WEEKS.
PLEASE CHECK BACK or contact info@agroterrabirth.com for more information.

Being a parent can have enormous challenges! Parenting in the modern world can be an isolating and confusing experience… It has been said that it takes a village to raise a child, but many parents feel without the social and emotional support needed to feel centered in their parenting journey. Join our village at Open Circle to connect with other parents, learn about ways you can practice self care as a parent and touch base about child development.

Led by Lisa Gendron, family doula and self-compassion practitioner/mother of three.

Meets monthly.

DATES
TBD, weekly
Please contact info@agroterrabirth.com to sign up for mailing list

TIMES
TBD, weekly

COST
$20 ($5-$15 IBP)

LGBTQ+ Pregnancy + Parenting Group

CURRENTLY SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE DUE TO COVID-19
Open Circle and a small group of queer-identified professionals joined together to create a pregnancy and parenting group for the LGBTQ+ people in Rhode Island and Southeastern Massachusetts.  Our goal is to provide a place where queer families can grow their network of support, access resources (healthcare, legal, education, etc.) and talk about challenges and rewards of being LGBTQ+ and pregnant or parenting.

This is a group open to all LGBTQ+ people at every stage of the process – from those simply exploring becoming parents to those parenting older children.  People who are single or in relationships are welcome, as are people who are transgender, gender-fluid or non-binary. This is a space designed to be welcoming and safe.

Facilitated by Nichole Heig, CNM, Jess Cronin, LICSW, and Sarah Bowman, MPH

Sessions will be drop-in, monthly, and last 90 minutes. We will have water and snacks. Each group will have a topic but we expect that the bulk of the time together will be spent discussing matters pertinent to the participants’ expressed needs.

DATES
First Saturday of every month, with the exception of holiday weekends
CURRENTLY SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

TIMES
4:00 to 5:30 pm

COST
Free

RSVP/more info

The Open Circle Fathering Group

CURRENTLY SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE DUE TO COVID-19

The Open Circle Fathering Group* aims to create a shared space for fathers-to-be, new fathers, and fathers with younger children.  This group is designed as a safe, brave, and comfortable space to talk about joys, hopes and frustrations, share the numerous obstacles and challenges we experience, and brainstorm/share practical solutions. Becoming a parent forces us to come face-to-face with intense inner experiences — joy, love and humor, but also perhaps anger, anxiety, jealousy, shame, grief and more.  Often, our identities, priorities, independence and relationships with our partners change at a disorienting speed during pregnancy and after the baby arrives. This group will offer a space to air it all out, so that we can ride the waves of fathering with more skill and find renewed energy and meaning in our ever-changing roles and identities.

Facilitated by Sheldon Malcolm and Avi David.

*Open to anyone identifying as a father or father-figure

NOTE: babies/children (up to age 3) are welcome to attend under their parent’s care and supervision.

DATES
Meets the first and third Sundays of every month.
CURRENTLY SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
Please check back for online options in the future.

TIME
1:30 to 2:30PM

COST
Suggested donation $5-10. Drop-ins welcome.

____________________________________________________________

Future support groups will include:

  • Parents of Ill or Special Needs Children groups
  • Pregnancy Loss groups
  • Fertility Support groups

Please check back for more information.