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#StrengthInUs: Five Ways to Encourage Inclusion with your Kids or Family

By Ruben Vazquez, YWCA Vice President of Racial Justice and Public Policy
February 16, 2018
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Talking about inclusion with your kids or family first starts with admitting there are differences in the world. The theory of raising “color blind children”, or children who are unaware of race or racism, does not celebrate the many wonderful cultural and racial differences that exist in our world and everyday life. Ignorance, denial or avoidance also leaves children in a difficult position of trying to understand a complex issue.

Starting the Conversation

Whether it’s your own kids, your classroom or simply a group of youth you care about, it can be tough to know what to say to them about race and how to celebrate diversity and encourage inclusion.

Science has proven that children will begin to develop biases around differences at a young age.

By having meaningful discussions about these differences, parents can guide children to:

  • Learn accurate knowledge about their own heritage
  • Appreciate and embrace others who are different from them
  • Gain an understanding of how racism works and how to combat it

Five Ways to Encourage Inclusion with your Kids or Family

1. NURTURE a positive self-image

2. TREAT every child as an individual and avoid making comparisons or assumptions

3. FOSTER a desire to learn and openness to differences; explore and celebrate differences

4. ADVOCATE for inclusivity in learning and play

5. PROMOTE peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all

Share Your Journey Toward Inclusion

YWCA Minneapolis stands for a fully inclusive community. For more than 125 years (founded in 1891) we have worked to create opportunities to overcome social injustice, particularly in matters of gender and race. And we invite you to stand with us.

As you take action toward equity and inclusion, let us know! Use the hashtag #StrengthInUs to inform and inspire others with the positive change you are creating.