Undoing Racism Workshop

As described on our History and Mission page, it was due to founding students’ participation in a presentation by the People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond (PISAB) that several Columbia students initially inquired about the possibility of an Undoing Racism TM field placement. Thus, with great support and effort, URIP was created.  The principles and shared language learned at the Undoing Racism® Workshop (URW) remain at the center of URIP's work and continue to propel our students forward into their professions as anti-racist thinkers and organizers.  Since 2005, over 1000 students have participated in the Undoing Racism® Workshop, and we will continue to work towards increasing that number.  

URIP hosts 1-2 student focused URW Workshops a year. Student scholarships and discounts are available. Check out our events page for upcoming dates and to register.

We hope to see you at a workshop soon!

Undoing Racism® Community Organizing Workshop Description     
Undoing Racism is our signature workshop.  Through dialogue, reflection, role-playing, strategic planning and presentations, this intensive process challenges participants to analyze the structures of power and privilege that hinder social equity and prepares them to be effective organizers for justice. The multiracial team of organizers/trainers includes more than 40 men and women whose anti-racist organizing expertise includes years with civil, labor and welfare rights struggles, educational, foster care, social service and health reform movements, as well as youth and grassroots community organizing. An average of 10-15 groups per month participate in The People’s Institute Undoing Racism®/Community Organizing process.

Workshop participants will:

  • Develop a common definition of racism and an understanding of its different forms: individual, institutional, linguistic, and cultural;

  • Develop a common language and analysis for examining racism in the United States;

  • Understand one’s own connection to institutional racism and its impact on his/her work;

  • Understand why people are poor and the role of institutions in exacerbating institutional racism, particularly for people and communities of color;

  • Understand the historical context for how racial classifications in the United States came to be and how and why they are maintained;

  • Understand the historical context for how U.S. institutions came to be and who they have been designed to serve;

  • Understand how all of us, including white people, are adversely impacted by racism every day, everywhere;

  • Address surface assumptions about how your work is (or is not) affected by racism;

  • Develop awareness and understanding about ways to begin Undoing Racism;

  • Gain knowledge about how to be more effective in the work you do with your constituencies, your organizations, your communities, your families;

  • Understand the role of community organizing and building effective multiracial coalitions as a means for Undoing Racism.