“Journey to Equity” is a two-part workshop for rural nonprofit staff, board, and volunteers who need to take steps to demonstrate their organization’s commitment to diversity,equity, and inclusion (DEI) and be able to communicate progress to funders and community members. Activities will focus on approaching equity in ways that are relevant to their mission and programs, and consider what represents meaningful progress toward their specific goals for becoming more inclusive and informed. Journey to Equity will be offered in Baker City on Oct. 17 and 31, and in La Grande on Nov. 4 and 18, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Nonprofits are expected to send at least two participants (board, staff or volunteers) to both sessions.  A registration fee of $75 covers the cost for the first two participants from each organization and additional participants are $25 each. Scholarships are available; contact Lisa at 541-426-3598. Lunch will be provided. Together we will examine the complexity of diversity and inclusion in rural Northeast Oregon, how underlying systems relate to equity, and the changes to organizational culture, operations (forms, etc.), structure (board/staff composition) or policy that may be needed in order to better serve diverse populations. Over the course of the two sessions participants will assess their starting point, describe their motivation and goals for change, identify strategies and tools to make progress, and anticipate some of the challenges on the journey ahead.  Participants will have the opportunity to:

  • Complete an organizational assessment
  • Outline an equity plan of goals, activities and outcomes
  • Draft an equity statement to help communicate what you are trying to do
  • Practice using an equity lens to guide decision-making

Lisa Dawson and Sara Miller will facilitate the workshop. Both are graduates of the Meyer Memorial Trust Capacity Builders Learning Collaborative for building nonprofit capacity to advance diversity, equity and inclusion. Miller is also a graduate of Leading for Equity and Inclusion, a systems-based approach to building awareness, changing behavior and taking action. “Learning about diversity and inclusion is not about checking a box. It is a way to move beyond acknowledging inequity to becoming more equitable and changing the ways we operate,” says Miller.