On March 22, 2020, Gerriet Schwen (*1995) invited some friends with a background in facilitation to a brainstorming online meeting. He was wondering how to let the power of community become effective in times of Corona and suggested to initiate video calls to offer online spaces where people can listen and speak from the heart and explore what is really important to them. Michael Hoenninger (*1990) and Griet Hellinckx (*1963) joined Gerriet in bringing this vision forward.
We had expected to be able to get it all up and running within a short period of time. With this aim in mind we participated in a 72-hour and a 48-hour hackathon, where several people from all over the world joined us to work on the technical realisation and to offer us feedback and advice. Thank you!! You know who you are. However with a zero budget and no technical expertise, it was all far more complicated than we had expected. Finally the project got financial support from SAGST and Arne Bollinger (*1983) stepped in. Backed up by colleagues, he developed the platform’s present technical structure. As the platform was already online, we received another grant from The Circle Way. This enabled us to distill the plug-in and make it available to anyone anywhere in the world (licensed as Creative Commons).
Thank you to everyone who was involved at some point and helped us to manifest the vision of a free, open source platform for self-organised circles.