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01 AprVideo & Resources on COVID-19 & Conservation/the Outdoors

Dear Community, Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, we at the Avarna Group have been trying to figure out our role, what to say, and how to move forward. We know that COVID-19 has exposed structural inequities and injustices that predated the pandemic, and that individual and institutional responses to the crisis can exacerbate these inequities. But what does that have to do with the outdoor recreation, conservation, and environmental community? Well, it turns out a lot. Earlier this week, we hosted a webinar with over 300 member...

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07 JulHow do we move forward? Do the work.

I was going to take the day off from work today, turn off my computer, and relax but I can't. I can't ignore the continued racist police brutality. So today I worked. My work today, as it is everyday as white-identified person, is to continue to navigate how I can dismantle systems of power and oppression. Days like today it's easy to feel lost and overwhelmed about what to do, but it's these days that the work is the most important. I spend the morning reading about police brutality, Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. Some of the articles...

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29 AprHow to eat an elephant: tackling DEI work

Last month we did another free webinar with Transforming Youth Outdoors. This time we talked about how to get started in DEI work. When we first started thinking about doing all of this work, we heard so many different approaches. Some organizations are highly focused on engaging a more diverse population, some organizations are focused on improving hiring practices, while others are concerned about the inclusive nature of their programming. These are all great strategies, but to be successful in DEI work, an organization needs to engage in mul...

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03 FebWhy engage in equity, diversity, and inclusion?

Most organizations that reach out to us what to know how to proceed with equity, diversity, and inclusion  (DEI) efforts. They are hungry for best practices, toolkits, checklists, and training on how to tackle the elephant that is DEI  ("How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.") But focusing on the "how" and "what" takes us away from the more foundational question of "why." The success of DEI work is predicated on organizations being able to clearly articulate why equity, diversity, and inclusion should be prioritized. If you canno...

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