SUPPORT: Providing a safe and caring environment for young women to explore their strengths and possibilities, and to build confidence and a positive self-image.
PERSONAL ACCOUNTABILITY: Encouraging young women to live healthy lives by establishing a connection with the natural world and promoting healthy decisions.
MENTORSHIP: Creating opportunities for young women to build long-lasting networks through trusted mentoring relationships and empowering connections with other young women.
INTEGRITY: Sustaining a passionate organization that celebrates its historical origins and embraces diversity, inclusion, transparency, and community connection.
ACCEPTANCE: We support all of our Circle participants, unconditionally, however they may wish to express or identify.
Self-reliant young women, confidently engaged in their community and living to their full potential.
Circle Program was founded in 1993 by the trustees and camp director of Camp Onaway, a camp for girls on Newfound Lake in Hebron, New Hampshire. They wanted to create a summer camp program for socially and economically disadvantaged New Hampshire girls, but recognized the fact that just a few weeks at camp might not be enough to make a sustainable difference in the lives of the girls. They modeled Circle Program after the Mayhew Program for boys and combined residential summer camp with year-round, one-on-one mentoring.
Circle began as a "pilot program" with twenty-two girls. Currently, over eighty girls and teens are enrolled and they come from thirty-two towns throughout the Lakes Region. Circle Program is the only program of its kind serving girls in New Hampshire. It is also one of the only programs in the country that combines camp and mentoring, serving rural girls.
THE CIRCLE TEAM
Grants & Development Manager
Olivia has Bachelor of Science Degrees in Marketing and Business Administration from Salve Regina University in Newport, RI. While at Salve Regina, Olivia was a member of the Women's Varsity Track and Field team and a co-captain for two years.
As a northern New Hampshire native, she loves all that the state has to offer, but especially the White Mountains and the ocean.
Prior to joining Circle Program, Olivia was the Marketing Specialist for the Propane Gas Association of New England.
Sydney has a Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Keene State College, and is currently pursuing a Masters of Social Work degree from the University of New Hampshire. She has worked in a variety of settings including day camps, after-school programs, elementary schools, and colleges.
Sydney was an AmeriCorps VISTA member and worked to promote service, educational, and training opportunities to students and community members. She is excited to take this knowledge and use it in her role as the Program Coordinator!
Sydney enjoys spending her time outdoors, walking with her dog, and trying to play her banjo (trying is the key word here!).
Elana is a Plymouth State University alumni who graduated in 2019 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in graphic design. She was born and raised in New Hampshire and believes there is nothing compared to a summer in New England.
Elana enjoys her time at Circle Camp as an arts and crafts activities leader, and will continue to take on this role for camp sessions in the future. She believes that art has many therapeutic benefits, and is an excellent tool for self expression and storytelling. She will continue to encourage Circle participants to openly express their individuality and creativity.
Elana is a lover of cats and thrift shopping, and she is dedicated to demonstrating inclusion and equality.
Chelsea is a nonprofit executive, attorney, and international development and security professional.
When she is not empowering Circle participants to become their own leaders and future mentors, Chelsea is fighting for gender equality, wildlife protections, environmental sustainability, and digital equity.
Outside of work, Chelsea propagates plants, codes, experiments with molecular gastronomy, solders stained glass, and adopts and fosters dogs.
Lindsey is a highly skilled aquatics professional with 12 years of experience as an American Red Cross Lifeguard and swim instructor. She is passionate about nature, traveling, science, and history. Lindsey is a mom to her son named Fox. And she is committed to diversity and inclusion.
Lindsey has a Bachelor of Arts in US and Latin American History from Virginia Commonwealth University and a Master of Arts in Mexican History from Portland State University. Lindsey is a bilingual speaker of English and Spanish and is currently certified in Wilderness First Aid.
Her favorite part of camp is seeing a camper work hard to meet a challenge or to push past a roadblock.
Liz Grace, MS, has worked as an office assistant most recently for Plymouth State University in the Health and Physical Education Department. She has also worked in a similar capacity over the years for various New Hampshire businesses.
In addition to working as the Circle Program’s office manager and being a realtor, Liz is a custom furniture maker and has shared her skills with the Circle program by teaching the woodworking classes at camp for the past two years.
BOARD OF TRUSTEES
Sarah Crane, President
Talesha Saint-Marc, Vice President
James Mitkonis , Treasurer
Deborah Schachter, Secretary
Dawn M. Beers
Jennifer M. Crane
Chelsea Francek, Executive Director
Priscilla W. Gemmill
Seton Lindsay O'Reilly
Carol M. Southall