When asked during the 2019 SC Nonprofit Summit closing session what was the most important issue for our nonprofit community to address, over 30 percent of attendees said racial equity. We heard you!
As co-chairs for the next year's Nonprofit Summit, we are already deep into planning our state’s annual gathering of Allies for Good and promise you an immersive learning experience that will help you and your organization better understand and tackle issues of race, equity and inclusion (REI).
Our aim is that as Allies we:
- Understand SC’s history and the embedded systems of advantage and disadvantage, and how these systems continue to create inequities in our state;
- Commit to change from the inside out—examining our organizations' practices through an REI lens;
- Increase our confidence and ability to have courageous conversations within our personal networks, organizations and communities;
- Connect with in-state groups, coalitions and experts engaged in this work—our network of REI champions.
We are committed to making sure your attendance at the Summit is one that is both personally and professionally rewarding. The following experience principles will guide the planning committee’s choices and actions:
1. Our collective history matters— We can’t move forward with intentionality and impact if we don’t ground ourselves in our shared SC history. Whether you are a native or not, a shared context for how race impacts the health, education, housing and other outcomes of our state is critical.
2. Acknowledge the discomfort—We know that our attendees will be at various stages in their understanding of REI initiatives and conversations and will do all we can to prepare attendees for the conference and what to expect. But we won’t be afraid to “trouble the waters.” During the conference, we will not blame nor apologize but will respect, listen and move to collective understanding and action. If people are not uncomfortable, we aren’t going deep enough.
3. Make the learning and action personal—We will provide opportunities that allow attendees to reflect and tell their own stories. We will create opportunities where it is safe to share, so that everyone who attends can be heard by someone.
4. “Inspirational”, not just “best” practices—From the design of the conference to the selection of the speakers, we want the experience to build on the successes in our state and beyond. Attendees will be inspired by what they hear, see and experience before, during and after the Summit.
So, save the dates for the 2020 SC Nonprofit Summit on March 4-6 (NOTE: These are new dates!) at the Marriott in downtown Columbia! And use the list of resources to get your mind and heart ready…Here are a few to get you started.
We hope you plan to join us as we continue to learn and tackle this critical issue together.
Your Allies for Good,