Healing Circles in Vietnam started with a group of friends who found respite in circles and hope in the Healing Circles Global community. We accidentally came across one another and decided to bring circles to the people and causes we care about in Vietnam. Our first official circle series was called “Grieving a Loved One,” organized with loving support from Susanne Fest and David Spaw. At the moment, we are holding Coming Together circles every week. We’re partnering with Community Medicine (a network of doctors providing quality healthcare information to the public) to host the “Caring for a Loved One with Cancer” series. We have also been preparing proposals to bring circles into a hospital to support their staff.
Currently, we have six core team members and a Facebook group of roughly 500 members interested in participating and volunteering. All members have day jobs and volunteer their time to keep the network going. We’ve been experimenting with different formats of sustainability: sliding scale fees for circles, applying for grants, supporting fee-based training in The Circle Way methodology, etc.
We strongly believe in building capacity for the community of Vietnamese circle hosts in the long run and are in the process of translating circle guides and documenting our culturally-adapted scripts. Our team has also been supporting the Module One training for Asia, and preparing to host the training for Vietnamese volunteers later in the year.
Among a couple of mentions in local newspapers for our pop-up efforts at bringing circles into diverse places, Healing Circles Vietnam as a network was also featured on The South China Morning Post as a community initiative to tackle mental health issues.
Pictured from left to right are: Bùi Diệu Linh, Trần Thị Mai Ly, Nguyễn Hoàng Minh Khang, Phạm Hải Nam, Bùi Mai Phương, and Nguyễn Thu Thủy