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CURB’s ‘Community Conversations’ a success

An additional session has been added to the upcoming CURB-organised “Truth & Reconciliation Community Conversations”, after registration for the initial three groups proved an overwhelming success.

Already more than 100 people have signed up for the sessions, with others on a waiting list.

“The Community Conversations have been designed using restorative practice principles and will be structured in a way that each group will be discussing the same themes in their sessions over the coming weeks,” said CURB's Lynne Winfield.

“The importance of data collection, evaluations, and reports have been included in the process to ensure that feedback is captured and solutions and ideas for transforming and healing our community are put forward to the wider community.”

The initiative was launched on January 11, and within 48 hours three groups were full.

“We are delighted we have a diverse population participating,” added Ms Winfield.

The sessions are to commence on February 14.

“As the Community Conversations have been designed to go through a process, we have sought confirmation from each participant that they can commit to be present for all 6 sessions. These sessions are 2 hours long and will be held twice a month for three months. We are happy that so many are willing to make this substantive commitment.

“Those we might wish to be put on the waiting list to participate in the Fall Community Conversations. starting in September, please e-mail admin@uprootingracism.org

“Locations for the meetings are Emmanuel Methodist Church (West), Crawl Gospel Hall (East), Human Rights Commission (Central #1) and Bermuda College (Central #2), and we are sincerely grateful for the use of these facilities to hold these important community conversations, and wish to extend our sincere thanks to those who have provided access and support.

“We are especially grateful to the 12 facilitators/mediators from the community who have volunteered their time to run the sessions over the next six months. This is truly a community-involved project.”

Ms Winfield said participants would be encouraged to understand they are beginning “a long and complex journey”, but one of deep societal transformation that promises rich personal and community rewards.

“These rewards may include economic growth, political stability, tranquility, pride and a sense of common humanity as the community approaches its destination — the elimination of the myth of a hierarchy of human value,” said Ms Winfield. “Each community is different and must recognise its uniqueness, both its unique assets and challenges, as it begins its journey. Those who participate will be at the forefront of helping people to recognise one another's humanity and value.

“The truth and reconciliation process seeks to improve our capacity as communities and as a country to see ourselves in each other, so that we can shape a more equitable future with opportunities for every child to thrive.

“Ultimately, the process will reveal untold truths related to the racial hierarchy belief system and heritage of Bermuda; fostering healing and producing actionable recommendations for change. Our collective efforts will provide access to truth and healing that will underscore the value of authentic, complete and accessible history and culture of diverse groups.

“Dr Martin Luther King, Jr said: ‘Time itself is neutral; it can be used either destructively or constructively. Human progress never rolls in on wheels of inevitability, it comes through tireless efforts ... we must use time creatively, in the knowledge that the time is always ripe to do right.' ”

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Published February 07, 2017 at 2:19 pm (Updated February 08, 2017 at 11:31 am)

CURB’s ‘Community Conversations’ a success

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