Dear NP BAL – our community of people we love!
Have you felt a little stale lately? A little over the hype of normalizing what is not at all a normal situation? Overwhelmed? Underwhelmed? A little like you can’t wake up before 9am? You’re not alone. We have been feeling the same.
We miss all your faces and we know this because when we bump into any of you, it brings a surge of joy that rides with us the entire day. I’m sure you’ve all felt the same, so you know how eager we are to gather again.
This survey is one of two coming this month. Both are meant to gather the collective thought on two majors things on our minds. The first is navigating our role in racial and social justice. The second, which will be posted later this month, is a workout plan going forward.
Navigating our role in racial and social justice
One of the important things we want to establish is making our place a more inclusive and safe place for everyone. You might think that we already have such a place here and everyone is welcome. We have always touted our motto of “Just Show Up,” but we recognize — it’s not that simple, and we, a collective we, have failed at cultivating that kind of inclusivity fully. We believe that self examination is an important part of any society. And just as our country is questioning itself at the moment we think we should embrace this spirit too. So even if we feel good about where we are, this is a good thing to do.
What is one way we know we can do better?
Minority and marginalized individuals often let micro incidents pass to get to what we want. You all know how much I, Kaye, love our community and feel honored to lead it. But would it surprise you if I told you that I’ve twice been asked if it was okay to touch my hair once during a workout and another during an event. While this made me uncomfortable it wasn’t enough to deter me from coming back to NP because of the embrace from friendships I had begun to form at that time. These types of microagressions happen, though, and can be a deterrent for others. They are one way we can begin to address our inclusivity, as the majority of us may not recognize these as uncomfortable or problematic because of our personal biases, like race, gender or sexuality.
We, Bryson, Kaye, and Lizzie, want to be better for you, so we’d like to talk with you. Through this survey, we want to hear your feelings, disagreements and ideas with us on how we can do better together. If you feel comfortable sending comments or questions anonymously, please do! If you’d like to talk with us further about anything you wrote, please also do that!
Ultimately, our goal is to have a series of town halls to share general survey takeaways, gather further feedback, and discuss/strategize how to revamp and ultimately reopen November Project in a more welcoming and inclusive way.
So, without further ado, here is the first (of two!) survey.
Stay tuned for Town Hall information to come.
We are looking forward to hearing from all of you, and wait to see all your faces in small electronic windows 🙂
X’s and Boh’s
Kaye, Bryson, and LizzieShare via socials: