Coming Together for Racial Understanding Train the Trainer Workshop

November 12, 2019 - November 14, 2019 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. each day

MSU Detroit Center – 3408 Woodward Ave., Detroit, MI

Contact: Dionardo Pizaña,, 517-432-2666 or Anne Brooks,, 517-432-7623

Michigan State University Extension continues its commitment to engaging in dialogues about race and racism. Phase two of the Coming Together for Racial Understanding Program will focus on supporting the development of skills and competencies of Extension staff, the staff at the Center for Regional Food Systems and community partners to help facilitate community-based dialogues about race and racism. Objectives for the training include the following:

  • Engage in a process and content focused on race and racism that can be used in community base programming
  • Develop and enhance facilitation skills useful in engaging in dialogues across race and racism
  • Develop relationships across and within race with other participants
  • Learn how to navigate complex dialogues related to power, privilege and differences
  • Develop a familiarity with the Facing Racism in a Diverse Nation issue book that will serve as a guide for community based dialogues
  • Intentional time for planning the implementation of community base dialogues

Upon completion of the training:

Participants of the train the trainer program will be encouraged and supported to host the community dialogue process they will experience in their local communities, sometime in Spring or Summer 2020. Our desire is to have participants host 2-4 community dialogues in different sites across the state. In addition, our desire is that participants will find ways to integrate what they learn into other aspects and programs within their Extension roles.

Community Partner Participation:

We highly encourage the participation of diverse community partners in this train the trainer process. Their participation is not mandatory; however, we see value in having diverse groups of facilitators leading the dialogues in community settings. Involving a diverse community member may also assist in ensuring participation from a diverse pool of community members in the dialogues. 

Train the Trainer Facilitators:

Staff members from Everyday Democracy, Carolyne Abdullah (Director of Strengthening Democratic Capacity Team) and Gwen Whiting (Director of Training and Leadership Development) will be the lead facilitators for this training. The MSU Extension Coming Together for Racial Understanding facilitator team will also facilitate portions of the train the trainer process. 

About Everyday Democracy:

Everyday Democracy works to strengthen democracy by making authentic engagement and public participation a permanent part of the way we work as a country. Since our founding in 1989, we have worked with hundreds of communities throughout the US, first by offering small, structured dialogues that led to positive and lasting change, and now offering an array of flexible resources and discussion guides, technical assistance and coaching, and information about our Dialogue to Change process. Our process uses solid engagement principles with a racial equity lens, and leads from personal connection to sustained action.  Everyday Democracy is a project of the Paul J. Aicher Foundation.

Workshop times and expectations:

The workshop will begin at 9 a.m. each day and end at 4 p.m. Participation in all three days is expected. 

Registration costs:

MSU Extension staff - $150.00 (includes materials, breakfast and lunch on all days)
Community Partners - $100.00 (includes materials, breakfast and lunch on all days)

This program is funded, in part, by a generous contribution from the MSU Extension Director’s Office. 


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