Since 1991 we've been addressing prejudice and discrimination in Orange County with the help of great people like you. Thank you for your continued support!

OC Human Relations' e-newsletter | Spring 2019

Join us on Thursday, May 2nd, as we continue our tradition of honoring Orange County's unsung heroes who have made exemplary contributions to human relations in our schools, cities, businesses, and police departments.

Join us as we celebrate Justice, Diversity and the Human Spirit at this Inspirational,
One-of-a-Kind Event!

presented by 
Thursday, May 2, 2019
at The City National Grove of Anaheim
2200 E. Katella Avenue, Anaheim
5:30 - 9:15 pm
Business Attire - Complimentary Self Parking

5:30 pm
Mix & Mingle,  Silent Auction 

6:30-9:15 pm
Dinner, Drinks  & Inspirational Awards Program

Everyday RJ Training Offered in April
You're invited to join us on April 26 & 27 as our staff experts offer "Everyday RJ", an introduction to restorative justice and its practical application in our everyday lives. 

The Everyday RJ training is an introductory training in restorative justice and tools for building and maintaining community.
  • Day 1 will aim to help participants learn how to lead community building circles to help build stronger communities through storytelling, dialogue and open conversations.
  • Day 2 will introduce the group to the practice of restorative communication which combines interpersonal communication techniques of affective language (I-Messages), active listening, and restorative questions to create opportunities for respectful, reflective engagement during times of conflict and challenge.
For more information and to register visit our website and/or contact Seema Shah at: or 714.480.6578
Youth Leadership Institute Registration Now Open! 

The BRIDGES Youth Leadership Institute is a week-long, day camp that brings together OC youth from diverse backgrounds to participate in activities, dialogues and skill building exercises about human relations and social justice issues. Students learn the skills to organize youth, take a stand against hate and injustice and create schools and communities that are safe and equitable for ALL.
The camps are offered to Orange County high school students who have been active members in their school's BRIDGES Program (or other Human Relations-type program) and who want to play a leadership role in the future.  Camp graduates commit to work to empower new leaders and thereby improve the Human Relations Program at their schools. 
The Institute runs 9am-4pm, July 24-28.  The cost is $250 per person, however, scholarships are available.  For more information and to register, see OC Human Relations' Youth Leadership Institute.  

Thanks to OC Family magazine for highlighting the BRIDGES Program and the Youth Leadership Institute in its April edition - you can read it here (the article starts on page 33)
OC Human Relations to Partner with Newport-Mesa Unified School District  
OC Human Relations' CEO Alison Edwards addresses NMUSD Informational Meeting.
OC Human Relations is honored to collaborate with Newport Mesa Unified School District to establish a Human Relations Task Force. 

The purpose of the Human Relations Task Force is to collect input from the community on human relations issues and provide recommendations to the school board on steps to take to create safe and respectful school campuses.  For more background, See Our Website
Anaheim High School Holds 1st Annual "Unity Week" 

Anaheim High School BRIDGES Program, in collaboration with Project SAY, Anaheim Exclusivo, ASB, GSA, Crown, and other student groups held their first 1st Annual Unity Week at the beginning of March.  Highlights included a focus on mental health, a "speed friendship" event, guest speakers talking on subjects ranging from Womens' Empowerment to LGBTQ+ issues and open mic and karaoke. Congratulations to all the students involved in organizing Unity Week!

YouthSpeak Essay & Speech Winners Announced

OC Human Relations' annual YouthSpeak Speech & Essay Contest is a county-wide search for the top human relations speech/essay written by Middle & High School students. 

The 2019 theme was "The Problem With Labels".  High School students were invited to submit a short, inspirational speech reflecting on "What does it mean to label someone and what is the impact on people? What can be done to address the negative impact of labeling a person or a group of people?" Middle School students were asked to submit an essay on the same topic.

To read the speeches & essays of the contest winners please visit:   YouthSpeak

2019 Speech Contest Winners (L-R)
Sahar Alfatlawi, Lynn Noh, Lucia Gonzalez
2019 Essay Contest Winners (L-R) Mackenzie Mauldin, Jimmy Che, Ariana Perez
North Justice Center Dispute Resolution Volunteers Honored

On March 22nd, the Dispute Resolution Programs Act collaborative (DRPA) hosted its annual Volunteer Recognition event at North Justice Center (NJC) in Fullerton. The event featured speeches by judges in Civil and Family Courts across Orange County, who highlighted OC Human Relations' critical role in training and mentoring volunteer mediators. 

Peko Gomis, our long-time NJC coordinator, was singled out for his amazing support of our mediators. Speeches were also delivered by directors of the DRPA collaborative organizations, including our very own Kathy Shimizu.  OCHR recognized Peter Elespuru and Anita Chien for Civil Court and Lorene Vance for Family Court as the "DRPA Sherpas" of 2018 for their superb involvement as volunteer mediators. 

A big Thank You to all of our volunteers!  And, should you be interested in volunteering with OC Human Relations, please take a look at our Volunteer Page.
Upcoming Events!
Next 40-hour Mediation Training Begins May 9

This training is presented by OC Human Relations mediation professionals and is composed of five 8-hour sessions - Thursday, Friday Saturday and the Friday & Saturday of the following week.

Mediation is a voluntary method of dispute resolution in which the parties settle their dispute with the aid of a trained mediator or a co-mediator team. Agreements are reached through effective communication, negotiation, compromise and exploration of options. Any dispute may be brought to mediation as long as both sides agree to attempt a mediated solution. If you are interested in becoming involved in casework in mediation and conciliation, you must complete this certification training.  Learn more on our website.
'Everyone Has a Bias, How Do We Break Away From Stereotypes?'

Our Human Relations Ambassadors Program (HRAP) youth are partnering with the Interfaith Youth Council of Orange County (IYCOC) to host a Community Forum at our offices on May 16 from 6-8pm.  The topic is "Increasing Social Awareness & Empathy: Everyone Has a Bias, How Do We Break Away From Stereotypes" This is one of a series of three forums organized by the Interfaith Youth Council.  MORE INFO

OC Human Relations | 1801 E. Edinger, Santa Ana, CA 92705 | 714-480-6570