Peer Learning Circles


Real world answers for real world problems

Peer Learning Circles are based on action-learningAdults learn best when they apply new information to real-world, current challenges.   New learning is further ingrained when adults share ongoing feedback about their experiences.  Learning Circles provide peers the opportunity to learn from their own and others’ experiences, and to immediately test and apply their learning at their nonprofits.

Learning Circles lead to higher achievementgreater productivity improved communication … & increased well-being.

Learning Circles are composed of 5-9 peers in the same type of position, in non-competing nonprofits, who commit to self-directed problem solving.  Members meet regularly to discuss current nonprofit concerns, share insights and experiences, support and question each other, and jointly problem solve.

Learning Circle members come to meetings to work on individual goals or issues related to their nonprofit. Each member commits to taking action between meetings to address their goals. A wide range of issues tend to get addressed in Peer Learning Circles:

  • balancing personal, professional and community responsibilities
  • managing staff / board relationships and responsibilities
  • dealing with people whose personal issues affect their nonprofit performance
  • identifying competencies to leverage growth

Each 1.5 hour session is led by a skilled facilitator with extensive knowledge of the nonprofit sector who manages the process and discussion. Sessions focus on members helping each other achieve their goals through highly focused questioning and feedback. Groups are confidential, supportive and focused on learning and action.

Here’s what peers say …

“A nonprofit learning circle is a great way to share ideas, information, and support.  It is wonderful to bring an issue to the table and have people who really understand the reality of nonprofit management listen and brainstorm. … The facilitator keeps us on task and focused so we don’t turn it into a gripe session.  Absolutely worth my time.”

“I have found learning circle discussions invaluable.  They help me interact with Board, staff and donors. Our discussions have definitely given me more confidence in my new role.”

“The process of learning and sharing the issues that face us as nonprofit leaders has helped me keep my own issues in perspective and has helped me develop strategies for our nonprofit to be as effective and proactive as possible.”


With Peer Learning Circles, you will:

  • Network with colleagues who face similar complex challenges and opportunities
  • Get support and coaching from peers
  • Take actions and learn from them
  • Experiment with new ideas before “taking them public”
  • Achieve personal and professional goals

Click here to download the Peer Learning
Circles Flyer & Application


Peer Learning Circles are now accepting members for meetings at the Chester County Community Foundation in West Chester! Interested? Download, complete and return the Learning Circle Application to be considered for a Circle.

Questions? Email Stephenie Stevens at steph@chescocf.org



Accepted applicants, please pay your registration fee below. Be sure to select your circle type from the drop down menu.