Continuous Learning: Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Training
Interview with Friends Board Member Karin Garblik -- Access and Inclusion Committee Co-Chair
What were the primary objectives of the DEI training?
A priority for us at the Friends is to invest in continuous learning about the communities we serve, and to continue evolving a DEI-aligned approach with our environment. For this initial training, four desired learning outcomes were established, namely: to acquaint attendees with the information and resources to inspire support of DEI values; to familiarize attendees with data points that communicate the necessity of promoting DEI values; to teach contexts in which the JMZ can actively champion DEI values in practice and outcome; and to inspire attendees to continuously engage with educational activities that relate to DEI.
To inform these objectives and to make the training as meaningful as possible, JMZ staff were surveyed on the topics they found most important to creating an environment aligned with DEI values. Both sessions emphasized the continuous nature of learning about DEI and the constant work required to create an environment welcoming to all staff and visitors.
What did the training entail?
More than 45 JMZ staff, Friends staff, board members and committee members were trained across two sessions. The first of these trainings laid the foundations for understanding what DEI is and defined the impact of implicit and cultural bias. The second session dug deeper into what we hope to achieve and what tools we need to develop as far as becoming more diverse, inclusive, accessible, and equitable organizations. The benefits of promoting DEI values in the workplace, from attracting more diverse talent to favorably impacting life outcomes of diverse communities were clearly outlined in both sessions.
The training sessions were both interactive and collaborative. Attendees were challenged to discuss what we had learned and encouraged to bring up any additional questions raised while relating the session back to our own experiences.