4 helpful ways to start social justice conversations

(BPT) – As several recent events have amplified issues of social injustice, more and more people are starting and participating in conversations on how to make the world a better place. While these conversations may be difficult at times, it’s critically important to have them.

“Together we must create a society that values the humanity within all people and teaches each generation that we are interconnected, working for a world where citizens thrive together, in perfect harmony,” says Thomas W. Dortch, Jr., chairman of 100 Black Men of America, Inc., the nation’s top African-American-led mentoring organization.

Ahead of National Make A Difference Day on Oct. 24 — a day where millions of people unite in the common mission to improve the lives of others — here are a few ways you can get involved in starting social justice conversations in your community:

1. Attend a social justice workshop

Find a place where you can interact with individuals from multiple differing backgrounds and perspectives to discuss the possibly uncomfortable topics that propel inclusivity forward. Coca-Cola provides this opportunity as part of their upcoming series of six free virtual events beginning Wednesday, Oct. 21. The virtual dinner series is open to the public and features conversations around various social justice topics designed to encourage people to listen, connect and take action together.

Together We Must: The Conversation will include influential guest speakers including Bubba Wallace, American race car driver; Roderick Townsend, Team USA Paralympic Track and Field athlete; Thomas W. Dortch Jr., National Chairman of 100 Black Men of America, Inc., and many more exciting celebrities and guests. Jill Savitt, President and CEO of The National Center for Civil and Human Rights, will moderate the discussions during each event.

Topics for the virtual dinners include bridging the racial divide, unconscious bias, belonging, inclusive culture, understanding race and allyship. You can learn more and sign up for an event at civicdinners.com/togetherwemust.

2. Host a discussion

As part of Coca-Cola’s Together We Must program, participants will also be encouraged to take specific actions to deepen their engagement, such as hosting their own conversations with friends, family and colleagues. If you choose to further the discussion in your own community, invite people from various backgrounds and cultures to enrich the conversation.

3. Use your social networks

Your social media platforms can be an impactful tool for confronting injustice. Use your channels to participate in discussions and lift up the voices of individuals from diverse backgrounds. Showcase your values but do your best to keep the content positive and engaging.

4. Engage your workplace

Encourage your place of employment to get involved and implement culturally appropriate and equitable strategies to combat social injustice — but do so in a positive way. Talk to your leaders about hosting town halls, listening sessions or facilitating conversations to take action and show support for equality.

“Together we must talk. We must listen. We must all embrace compassion, love and understanding,” says NASCAR driver Bubba Wallace on the topic of social injustice. Follow these tips to listen to and start impactful discussions with the people in your life. To join the conversation at Coca-Cola’s Together We Must event, visit civicdinners.com/togetherwemust.