Here's a sampling of the groups we are working with:
Kindle Farm School
Over a period of a few months in 2018 the Equity Solutions team worked with staff and teachers at Kindle Farm School in Newfane, VT on better understanding how poverty and economic inequality are impacting their students and the school. We also looked at how gender and class impact each other and can make it complicated to respond equitably. This school has a huge heart and an amazing capacity to support boys who struggle in typical public school classrooms. It was so beautiful to watch them apply an equity lens to their work. Way to go, Kindle Farm!
Mt. Ascutney Prevention Partnership (Mapp)
The Equity Solutions team worked with MAPP, Mt. Ascutney Promise Communities, and various partners to put together a Community Engagement Plan in Spring 2018. The plan is focused on connecting authentically with poor and working class families in Windham and Windsor counties. We worked with 30 participants in understanding frameworks, developing the plan, and a training to use the plan. The Community Engagement Plan was a big success. Participants are already implementing what they learned and are bringing their knowledge and heart understanding and sharing it at relevant meetings. Follow-up training and expanding the reach of the Community Engagement Plan is in the works.
Addison County Prevention Partners
In March 2018 we worked with the Addison County Prevention Partners - including United Way, Department of Health, DCF, Agency of Human Services and more - to put on a 2 day training on applying an Equity lens to their work. It was very successful. We've found that our two day trainings are the best way for people to really understand Equity as it relates to poverty and inequality and begin to apply it to their personal and professional life.
Click through the slideshow below to get an idea of the training.
Greenwich Country Day School
In February 2018 the Equity Solutions team facilitated 3 workshops at the Equity and Justice conference - Mosaic of Belonging - at the Greenwich Country Day School in CT. It was such a wonderful group of folks and we hope to continue the relationship and head back sooner than later!
REgional Prevention Partners
On Nov 13th, 2017 we trained 50+ people working on Substance Use Prevention from around the state of VT. The Center for Health and Learning organized the training.
Peace & Justice Center, Burlington, VT
On October 2nd, 2017 we partnered with the Peace & Justice Center to provide a public workshop - Poverty in an Unequal Economy. This workshop covered: poverty in a vastly unequal economy; our personal place in this reality; how an equity lens is an excellent tool for change; and equitable solutions. We used an equity lens to move beyond harmful assumptions so we can build more collaborative relationships across socio-economic class, challenge limiting beliefs about what is possible, and identify solutions based on the expertise of people most impacted. There were 40 people from all walks of life and over 10 different groups - including United Way, Ben & Jerry's, and Vermont Community Foundation - who attended.
Tiny House Fest, Brattleboro, vT
The Tiny House Fest happens in Brattleboro every labor day weekend. The Fest is here to ignite our community in meaningful conversations about attainable housing and sustainable living, with the Tiny House Movement as our spark.In 2017 the fest featured a workshop about Class Equity and Tiny Houses.
25 amazing folks attended the Tiny Houses for Change workshop on Sept 2nd, 2017. We had such a great day! We did some exercises to better understand housing within an unequal economy and how past and present policies negatively impact some people more than others (ie Racism). We then did a group brainstorm of how the tiny house movement can be a force for change in this context. We heard from Tiny House Expedition about really cool projects happening around the country. It was a positive and hopeful day.
VT-LEND PROGRAM, BurlingTon, VT
On Aug 28th, 2017 the Equity Solutions team joined the faculty of the UVM VT-LEND program. The Vermont Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities prepares leaders across the health and education professions to serve children with special health needs and their families. We had an excellent morning of better understanding the need for a class equity lens. The faculty came up with key areas where they can apply this lens such as: collecting data on socio-economic status and hiring faculty who have lived experience with poverty. What an impressive group of people, doing amazing work.
Clara Martin Center, Randolph, VT
The Clara Martin Center has been providing a comprehensive array of mental health and substance abuse services to the greater Upper Valley area including Orange County for almost 50 years! Equity Solutions will be training 175 Clara Martin Center staff at their annual retreat on addressing poverty and economic inequality with an equity lens at their annual retreat.
On Aug 24th we had a wonderful morning with Clara Martin staff. They came up with great ideas for bringing a class equity lens into their work and organization such as: supporting each other to question assumptions by making a practice of noting assumptions that come up during case presentations; having clients serve on committees; and building in ways for staff and clients to give feedback on equity related issues. See photos below.
Community Justice Network of VT
CJNVT is promoting a restorative approach to conflict and crime in Vermont communities. Equity Solutions is a keynote presenter and providing a workshop for the CJNVT annual conference - Stronger Together. We will be talking with 150 volunteers about poverty and economic inequality. We will work with the volunteers to apply an equity lens in a restorative justice context.
On June 2nd we had a fantastic day with people connected to Restorative Justice around the state of Vermont. See the photos below.