Intertwine Alliance Equity & Inclusion Cohorts engage organizations in an ongoing learning community focused on dismantling institutional racism in our sector. The program is a key part of The Intertwine Alliance's equity and inclusion strategy. The goal is to bring equity work to scale across a broad and diverse array of organizations through an ongoing peer-learning and support platform.
Thank you to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, the Oregon Community Foundation, The Collins Foundation and Columbia Bank for funding this important work through the years.
Info about past years' cohorts:
Enroll now for 2021 Equity & Inclusion Cohorts!
We are excited to launch our fourth year of this program, with three cohorts running from March through December 2021.
A big thank you to this year's sponsors, The Collins Foundation and Columbia Bank.
- Registration opens Tuesday, January 19
- Expression of Interest in the Equity & Inclusion Cohorts due by Friday, January 29
- Cohort commitment forms due by Wednesday, February 17
- Cohorts kick off in March 2021
In order to determine which cohort will be a good match for your organization and equity leaders, please fill out this Expression of Interest form. Equity Program Manager Katie Gavares will use this information and follow up with a conversation to place you in a cohort. Your preference will be strongly considered.
A training schedule for each cohort will be finalized after getting input from cohort members.
The Intertwine Alliance Equity and Inclusion Initiative supports our partners along their paths toward equity and inclusion by increasing peer learning through a cohort model and by connecting the cohorts to training resources.
Facilitated by DRC Learning Solutions' Derron Coles, Lauren Gottfredson and Alexis Millett
All training topics and activities will focus on helping cohort members develop a meaningful and science-based understanding of the fundamentals of diversity, equity and inclusion, with an emphasis on antiracist theory and actions. The depth to which we cover individual topics will be driven by cohort needs, but will include:
- Historical context of systemic inequities
- Intersectionality and the dynamics of power and privilege in society
- Culture and its impacts on thought and behavior
- Barriers to cultural competency development and mitigation strategies (e.g. mindfulness)
- Neuroscience of bias and strategies for interrupting bias (our own and others)
We will establish an inclusive, shame-free environment to engage cohort members through relationship building and self-reflection exercises that build cultural self-awareness and competency while diminishing fears of intercultural communication that can prevent post-training development. Further, we will use a community-of-practice model where each organization will receive both peer-to-peer and DEI specialist coaching to continue personal and organizational development throughout the year. Peer support will be coupled with “deep dive” assignments intended to maintain momentum.
Each organization is invited to designate two participants for the cohort. To foster a learning community, we ask that the same two individuals attend each training throughout the year. Participants will raise their personal awareness and address biases; this cohort is not for folks far along in their personal equity journey. Finally, in order to ensure that learning continues despite organizational turnover, consider succession planning when selecting organizational leaders to carry this work forward.
The proposed scope of work includes a 2.5-day training and four 3-hour follow-up meetings as a cohort, which will run from March through October 2021. A training schedule will be finalized after getting input from cohort members. The cost to participate in this 6-month cohort is $700 per Intertwine Alliance partner organization and $1,400 per non-partner organization.
Change Agent Cohort
The theme of this year’s Change Agent Cohort is "From Awareness to Action," facilitated by DRC Learning Solutions' Derron Coles, Lauren Gottfredson and Alexis Millett. All training topics and activities will focus on advancing our language, skill sets and DEI toolkits, so that we can push through personal, organizational and systemic barriers to achieve more inclusive teams, organizations and coalitions.
The depth to which we cover individual topics will be driven by cohort needs, but will include:
- Developing personal vision statements
- Approaches to change agency and coalition building
- Making the case for integrating DEI considerations into policy and practice
- Mindsets that drive change
- Reframing issues and working across differences
- System analysis and equity auditing
Prerequisites: Prior awareness training or self-study on fundamentals of diversity, equity and inclusion. Understanding of key terms, concepts and justifications for DEI initiatives at the individual, organizational and societal levels.
The cost to participate in this 6-month cohort is $800 per Intertwine Alliance partner organization and $1,600 for non-partner organizations. Each organization is invited to designate two participants for the program, which will start in April 2021 and go through November 2021. A training schedule will be finalized after getting input from cohort members.
Implementation Peer Group
The Implementation Peer Group will work with consultants from Capacity Building Partnerships, Sara Curiel Paez and Alexis Millett. This peer group supports organizations who are already deep into their DEI journey, both as individual leaders and as organizations. Peer Group will be a total of eight 2-hour group meetings.
Peer Group will focus on supporting leaders through barriers in integrating DEI into organizational culture, policies, practices and programming. As a community of peers, the time will be devoted in each meeting for exploration of specific leadership dilemmas brought forth from the participants. A leadership dilemma involves a challenge you are experiencing or anticipating. Themes of these dilemmas may come about due to competing priorities in your organization; personal blind spots; team, management or leadership dynamics; resistance from key stakeholders; personal challenges moving this work forward; and many other barriers to implementation. This is an opportunity to learn together and from one another as we address challenges in the work.
This model of a cohort is not a training. Instead, it provides the opportunity to work through current issues with peers and consultants in a conversational setting. Below are 2020 participants' experiences within this model.
"Participating in the Intertwine Alliance's Implementation Peer Group was a truly great experience for me personally and as the lead of equity-based programs within the Forest Park Conservancy. The chance to work with a smaller recurring group of peers who are dealing with similar issues and challenges within their organizations made all the difference. Having that familiarity and short-hand with the participants facilitated some difficult and uncomfortable conversations. Furthermore, the leadership dilemma proved to be a truly effective approach. From sharing actual, real-life situations, to practice active listening, the sessions provided real insight and ideas on how to work on some of the DEI challenges our organization is facing."
-Alejando Orizola, Forest Park Conservancy, Conservation Director
"Participating in the Intertwine implementation peer group cohorts has been super helpful as we started to implement our Racial Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan. Operationalizing racial equity is not easy and requires work to help identify and talk through the challenges that come up when transforming an organization to support all people. One of the ways we utilized this experience was in the development of our Equity & Racial Justice Program Manager position. Using the Leadership Dilemma framework, we were able to collaborate with the cohort to identify and confirm key priorities for this position to help us take that next step as a department in implementation. We know we aren’t alone in figuring this out, and we’re grateful for the opportunity to build community with those organizations as we go through this together."
-Gaylen Beatty, Metro Parks and Nature, Special Projects Manager
We will offer one Peer Group, selected by participating organizations’ preferences from the two options listed below.
- BIPOC Affinity Group
- Cross Hierarchical: equity leaders, management, executive directors
The cost for two individuals to participate in eight 2-hour peer group sessions is $700 per Intertwine Alliance partner organization and $1,300 per non-partner organization. We will finalize a meeting schedule after getting input from cohort members.
Questions or thoughts? Please reach out to Equity Program Manager Katie Gavares at firstname.lastname@example.org.