Elyse Gordon | Once a month, I attend a professional womxn’s networking event. At the start of each event, the facilitator asks us each to share something that is distracting us, followed by the phrase “but I’m present.” The first time I heard this I cringed. Wouldn’t sharing my distractions mean me admitting my lack of engagement?
What I found is the opposite. more »
Ankita Patel | Aneelah Afzali and Masih Fouladi are co-contributors to this post
When talking about how historical oppression continues to impact communities today, it’s difficult to understand where to begin or how to advance our work. At Philanthropy Northwest, our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion framework and commitment helps us to understand when and how to enter the conversation with our communities.
Our Muslim communities — which are some of the fastest-growing in the country — are subjected to oppression, discrimination and indignities, otherwise known as Islamophobia. Muslims encounter these acts of injustice through a variety of individual and institutional mechanisms, such as experiencing bias incidents and hate crimes, facing discrimination when applying for jobs or securing housing, seeing children and loved ones bullied at school or being categorically restricted or banned from travel and targeted for surveillance. At its worst, Islamophobia has led to deadly consequences, not just for Muslims, but for other communities as well. more »
Aleesha Towns-Bain | Guest Contributor, Executive Director, Bristol Bay Native Corporation Education Foundation | My mom gave me a precious gift as a child - knowing exactly where we are from; a small fishing village near the Ugashik River in Bristol Bay, Alaska. Alutiiq people are matrilineal and our identities are passed through our mothers. So while I wasn’t born or raised in Alaska (and my dad is a proud Texan), I’ve always known that my people are from the beautiful waters of Alaska, and that my roots are sunk deep into the berry-studded tundra. My mom gave me the gift of my roots. more »
Ted Lord | When people gather to accomplish a common task, they also feel seen, heard and witnessed as individuals—even while tending the shared task of the whole. Appreciation Rounds are a collective call out that help make tacit group culture norms explicit, while also supporting the leadership development and personal mastery of participants. Starting meetings with an appreciative exercise often leads to an increased willingness to learn in public. We are often more able to admit mistaken assumptions and shadow behaviors when we trust that others see and hold us fully. more »