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Open Forums - Let's Talk!

Building Confidence through talking and exploring diversity and difference

In October 2021, as part of our Black History Month celebrations, we are holding a series of "Let's Talk" sessions for children, parents/carers, and teachers. These forums will be run via Zoom and places are free, but limited.

To register your interest, please complete the form below.


Children as young as three years old are aware of ethnicity  and skin colour, and they aren't afraid to ask questions. Their identities really matter to them, and ethnic identity is a significant part of their total identity. 

They also understand the power in talking about ethnicity  and discrimination , and that when they bring those things up, they can get the attention of parents/carers/teacher and other children.

Ethnicity  is relatively simple to address when a young child notices skin colour for the first time.  Discrimination based on skin colour, accent, dress, culture or religion/beliefs  is understandably harder to talk about.

open forums about race

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It is not the intention - it is the impact

Few parents would consider themselves or their children as harassers, or discriminators  based on personal characteristics , with its connotations of intentional, angry, or mean behaviour against different groups of people. 

However, intention isn't always part of discrimination, harassment, victimisation or bullying.

What that means, is though most people don't intend any harm, they're still making judgments based on personal characteristics such as skin colour, culture ethnicity etc and often those judgments come from implicit  bias, something we might internalise through everyday interactions and social messaging, resulting in beliefs that we might not even realise we have but can still cause unintentional discriminatory  behaviour. 

The goals of the "Let's Talk" sessions

The goal, is to raise children who are confident in their own skin and are educated to be able to talk openly and confidently about discrimination, harassment, victimisation and bullying based on one of more of their characteristics.

Developing empathy, compassion, and a sense of justice at an early age helps children to grow into adults who want to help make the world a better place.

For parents/carers/teacher, that often means taking a deep breath and having those tough conversations about ethnicity, discrimination, harassment, victimisation and bullying.

Regardless of how the conversation begins, parents/carers/teachers should be sending the signal that it's OK and important to talk about it,”

What the sessions do to raise confidence

The session is designed to:

  • encourage conversations around talk discriminatory-based events and the emotions that they bring out.
  • explore statements that link race with value judgments
  • help children recognise the harm of discrimination, harassment, victimisation and bullying based on judgements/ideas/prejudice
  • encourage parents/carers/teachers to update home/school libraries.
  • introduce diversity to different aspects of the lives of children/parents/carers and teachers.
  • encourage talking about ethnicity, diversity and difference without the discomfort
  • acknowledge that these are hard conversations to have, but also important ones

Change-makers see both sides of the story.

Making a difference takes a level of empathy and perspective-taking, you need to figure out what the issue is, and how to speak it in a way that brings other people along.

Change involves differences, conflict, and compromise Gently presenting both sides of a story and playing devil's advocate with children can help, you can foster empathy by showing children what each side has to gain and lose.

By understanding other people's points of view, it's also easier to argue in a way that can be heard. We aim to encourage the children joining our discussion groups to be writers Produce blogs Take photographs that tell a story or raise an issue for discussion and action

Change-makers are our children, our young people and we want to engage them in discussions, to be passionate and to take actions that make a difference

In Summary

Helping your children to find a meaningful group to join can offer them the strength and significance of a team. It's really a core part of humans that we need to feel that we have a sense of purpose, that we're here to do something.

Sports are great, but becoming a team player can also mean joining our Let's Talk Sessions. We're teaching our children/young people to be a part of something bigger than themselves and to make a difference.

Join us in October for the Let's Talk sessions. To register your interest, please complete the form below.


  Expression of Interest

Please indicate whether you are:

Young Person

Parent/Carer

Organisation

Other

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