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CU Alternative Breaks. Diversity, Social Justice, & Allyship. One of the Eight Quality Components of an Alternative Break 1/21/2014. PollEverywhere Question. How are you committed to diversity and social justice? Text 148839 and your message to 22333.

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diversity social justice allyship

CU Alternative Breaks

Diversity, Social Justice, & Allyship

One of the Eight Quality Components of an Alternative Break


polleverywhere question
PollEverywhere Question
  • How are you committed to diversity and social justice?
  • Text 148839 and your message to 22333.
eight quality components of an alternative break
Eight Quality Components of an Alternative Break

Diversity & Social Justice

Strong alternative break programs include participants representing the range of students present in the campus community. Break programs should intentionally address the issue of diversity and social justice, or in other words privilege and oppression, and how it relates to service work.

vrc service philosophy
VRC Service Philosophy

Statement of Diversity & Inclusivity

The Volunteer Resource Center is committed to embracing and valuing the diversity of the CU-Boulder and greater community. We recognize that our success is dependent upon how well we value, include, and engage the rich diversity of our service partners: students, faculty, staff, alumni, and community members. We believe that prejudice, oppression, and discrimination are detrimental to establishing authentic relationships, which is the foundation of service. We are committed to treating all with dignity and respect, and to working collectively in an ongoing manner to build and sustain a community that understands and celebrates diversity, while promoting inclusion at all levels.


“The trouble around diversity, then, isn’t just that people differ from one another. The trouble is produced by a world organized in ways that encourage people to use difference to include or exclude, reward or punish, credit or discredit, elevate or oppress, value or devalue, leave alone or harass.”

power privilege intersectionality
Power, Privilege, & Intersectionality:

“The concept of Intersectionality recognizes that people can be privileged in some ways and definitely not privileged in others. There are many different types of privilege, not just skin color privilege, that impact the way people can move through the world or are discriminated against. These are all things you are born into, not things you earned, that afford you opportunities others may not have.” ~ Gina Crosley-Corcoran

“Explaining White Privilege to a Broke White Person”

social justice allyship
Social Justice Allyship:

“An individual who experiences privilege and rejects the dominant ideology; taking action against oppression out of a belief that eliminating oppression is mutually beneficial to both people who experience privilege and people who experience oppression.”

characteristics of an ally
Characteristics of an ally:
  • Comfortable/proud of own identity
  • Takes responsibility for own education
  • Acknowledges unearned privileges
  • Recognizes unlearning as a lifelong process
  • Willing to take risks, try new behavior
  • Acts against social injustice in belief of own self-interest
  • “30 Ways to Be a Better Ally in 2014”

“Being an ally is about a commitment to social justice grounded in an understanding of one’s self. To me, the most important element to allyhood is the ability requirement of reflexivity. First, we must interrogate our own privilege and power. Second, an ally must listen carefully to the conditions and needs of the group or individuals they are attempting to align with and define his or her work from there. Third, we must become comfortable with outsider status. It’s perfectly fine to not have full ownership of a struggle, in fact no one expects you to be a perfect proxy, but you are expected to hold your own. Fourth, we must be comfortable with being wrong and getting pushed to rethink our beliefs. Being committed to a thing does not mean you see all sides of it. We must be open to being challenged for the better. From this point, an ally can begin the work of advocating and more importantly supporting the efforts of others and themselves.

If you believe in social justice work, you realize that being an ally to a cause that you don’t see “directly” affecting your life is still intimately tied to other interlocking forms of oppression.”