Sat May 17: Authentic Diversity Workshop

Sat May 17
Beyond the Golden Rule?:
A New Model for Intercultural Competency
Building Capacity for Authentic Diversity

To register for this Workshop: CLICK HERE.

Each of us has culture--conscious and unconscious ways of being in the world.

To become a truly multicultural faith, Unitarian Universalist congregations need leaders who can build relationships effectively across difference including ethnicity, class, sexual orientation, gender, and more.

Come learn about a model of understanding cultural competence which will help you learn these skills.

This is a similar training to that offered to ministers through the UUMA called "Who Are Our Neighbors".

This training is ideal for both congregations that have racial and ethnic diversity and congregations who perceive themselves to be homogenous. This framework will be helpful for all leaders including, Religious Educators, Ministers, Board Members, Music Directors, Social Justice committee members, and more

You will learn:
  • a model of understanding how people engage with difference at different developmental levels and how to meet them where they are
  • what people at different developmental stages need
  • begin to coach your congregation into intercultural capacity
  • learn to start with the difference already in the room
We live in a multicultural world -- and we aren't always the most skillful in doing our part to make this reality a good one for ourselves and for those who are different from us. This is a vital issue (a) for our ministry to help the world become more accepting and affirming, and (b) for the long-term viability of Unitarian Universalism itself.

The path from a monocultural mindset to an intercultural mindset involves developing through five stages:

(1) Denial: Comfortable with the familiar. "I don't consider that cultural differences exist at all."
(2) Defense. Us vs. Them. "I defend my home culture because I lose my bearings otherwise."
(3) Minimization. Over-emphasis on commonality. "I minimize differences and focus on how I am similar with others."
(4) Acceptance. Recognize cultural difference. "I am aware of diverse cultural perceptions."
(5) Adaptation. Shifting perspective and behavior. "I adapt my reasoning and actions to the other's culture."

For a PDF with details on these stages (and a sixth stage called "integration"): CLICK HERE.

A number of UUA leaders, ministers, and consultants have now been trained in this "Developmental Model of Intercultural Sensitivity." We'll have a couple of those trained facilitators with us to lead the workshop on May 17. The workshop will also offer different tracks for people with varying degrees of familiarity with the model.

What UU work in this area has found is that most UUs are at stage 3: Minimization. Our third principle must be our guide as we go forward: "Acceptance of one another and encouragement to spiritual growth." Accept who we are and where are -- while at the same time encouraging growth. Accept ourselves and each other without blame or guilt -- while also intentionally seeking possibilities for a path toward greater intercultural sensitivity.

To register for this Workshop: CLICK HERE.

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