The Martha's Vineyard Diversity Coalition (MVDC) offers multicultural workshops called Building Bridges of Understanding. The original model was designed for young people by Educators for Social Responsibility and it's been revised to effectively connect people of different ages, ethnic, religious and racial backgrounds in an effort to promote an understanding of our human differences and commonalities.
During the process of four hours, twenty-five participants become more trusting of one another and when they leave, they feel very good about the time they spent together. The essence of the work is grounded in everyone listening and being heard.
This workshop was first offered as a part of The Children of War project in 1988 and subsequently Sandy Pimentel, our facilitator, used the model many times in schools and then in South Central, LA for the Mothers of East LA. during a time of racial tension. For twenty years, she has been asked to provide these workshops to teachers, businesses and students in a variety of venues. Her primary work was done in a project called The Alliance Against Racism and Violence, a project of Norfolk County’s District Attorney William Delahunt of Massachusetts. She worked with him on this project until he became a U.S. Congressman.