ENTERPRISE — Northeast Oregon Economic Development District’s “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 an organization’s mission and programs, and consider what represents meaningful progress toward its specific goals for becoming more inclusive and informed. 

Journey to Equity will be offered at HatchLab Baker in Baker City on Oct. 17 and 31, and at Art Center East in La Grande on Nov. 4 and 18. Each workshop will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Together participants 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


• Outline an equity plan of goals, activities, and outcomes

• Draft an equity statement 

• 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,” Miller said. “It is a way to move beyond acknowledging inequity to becoming more equitable and changing the ways we operate.”

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. Lunch will be provided. Scholarships are available. To register or for more information, contact Dawson at 541-426-3598 or Kristy Athens at 541-426-3598 or kristyathens@neoedd.org; or, go to https://bit.ly/30KLaRc (for Baker City event) or https://bit.ly/330zH1s (for La Grande). This program is available thanks to a grant from Meyer Memorial Trust.


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