Cross Cultural Conversations - A Series of Dialogues for More Equitable Communities

  • Tuesday, April 20, 2021
  • 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM
  • Online via Zoom
  • 7


Registration is closed

The Cross-Cultural Conversations Council invites community members to attend this important training to learn about, uncover, and address systemic racism, biases and barriers for our community members.

Through self-assessment and facilitated activities, participants gain increased understanding of their personal background and perspective on the implications of how their experience affects how they think and react to others from different backgrounds.

Organizations discover the value of practicing a more open and inclusive mindset into day-to-day operations

Session Agenda -

9:00 am - 1:00 pm

"Cross-Cultural Conversations, Part I: Striving toward Improved Sensitivity in Communication and Clearer Understanding of the Effects of Privilege and Unconscious Bias"

·         Define cultural awareness, sensitivity, and competence
·         Identify issues of equality vs. equity
·         Recognize the influence of “isms” in our communication
·         Recognize privilege and bias
·         Identify ways to bridge barriers

“Cross-Cultural Conversations, Part II: Steps to Overcoming Barriers"

·         Where do you stand on the continuum of awareness?
·         Addressing micro-aggression's
·         Recognizing unconscious bias
·         Using tools to enhance communication and understanding

Having a better understanding of ourselves, our colleagues, and our clientele will lead to more cohesion and greater effectiveness in our interactions. With improved communication and understanding, staff will be better equipped to adjust expectations and connect in a more productive manner with others.

Additional information-

  • You will need video and audio in order to benefit from and  participate fully with the other attendees.
  • Please be camera ready, we will ask you to share your cameras during the presentation and to join our break-out room sessions.
  • Please plan to arrive 10 minutes early as these sessions will need to start on-time to get in the full content.  
  • Due to the group-work required at these sessions each workshop requires a minimum of 12 participants. Please commit to this time once registered for full benefit of this learning.


Cost/s: Thank you to the generous sponsors who have made this workshop available at no-cost: 

No event is free. There are always a great deal of resources, time, money and energy invested. "No shows" may impact being able to offer future events at no-cost.


~ Cross-Cultural Conversations Cancellation and Refund For paid events Policy ~

CCC is committed to delivering high quality, professional development opportunities. This refund and cancellation policy accommodates the minimum time required to prepare for workshops and training's -including the cost of materials, content development, food and refreshments if applicable, and room accommodations.

As a nonprofit, we keep the fees for programs as low as possible. Absorbing the cost of late cancellations would ultimately increase the price of Cross-Cultural Conversations programs.

Credit Policy

A registrant who provides notice more than 48 hours before the start of the session will automatically receive a check refund or credit to be used exclusively for a CCC workshop.  No cash refunds will be given.  

No credits will be issued with less than a 48 hour notice. 

Right to Cancel

CCC reserves the right to cancel any workshop. If a cancellation occurs, registrants will receive a full refund or a credit towards another CCC workshop.

If you need assistance with a cancellation or a change in your registration, or if you are interested in bringing this important work to your organization,  please email or call our office at 517-796-4750.

Facilitated By— 

Contact Sharon todayEmma Leriche

Emma is part of the Administration support, Spanish interpreter and member of the Child welfare Anti-racism Team for The Department of Health and Human Services in Jackson County. Her role assisting clients allows her to relate effectively with people from different ethnic backgrounds and cultures.

Emma’s mission inspires and supports Diversity, Equity and Inclusion through all her functions in the Department and the community.

As an Economist, she believes that discrimination can lead to an inefficient economy. For this reason, she believes working on recognizing, appreciating and valuing individual differences will build a stronger and more efficient community.

Emma has a bachelor’s degree in Economics with a specialty in Finance. She is also, a facilitator and student of Diversity, Inclusion and Anti-racism workshops. The most recent one she attended is ERACCE (Eliminating Racism and Creating/Celebrating Equity).

Shalanda Hunt

Shalanda is widely known for her exceptional ability to establish trust when interacting with diverse populations.  She is deeply committed to and passionate about being a catalyst for positive change. Her efforts focus on empowering others to challenge their personal biases and understanding about diversity, equity and inclusion through authentic engagement.

Shalanda serves as the Michigan Youth Opportunities Initiative Coordinator (MYOI), with the Department of Health and Human Services, in Jackson County. She has been employed with the State of Michigan since 2011. Shalanda also maintains employment as a Youth Specialist, at the Jackson County Youth Center since 2003. In her current roles, she works closely with teens, providing independent living skills and mentor-ship. 

She has an extensive background working in a variety of social work specialties, such as child welfare, juvenile justice, youth development, community networking, and is an advocate for teen mothers and survivors of domestic violence. 

She is a graduate of Siena Heights University with a bachelor’s in criminal justice and is pursuing a master’s in social work. Her experience is not limited to adolescence but extends to training.

Martha York

Martha York is the Community Education Coordinator for Region 2 Area Agency on Aging. As a Master Trainer for numerous Evidence-Based Programs, Martha is skilled at facilitating groups and laying out a safe platform that encourages open expression of personal ideas and experiences. She is a licensed Social Worker who has worked for over 30 years with individuals and families coping with trauma, crisis, and chronic illnesses, encouraging them to strive to live well despite challenging circumstances.

Additionally, Martha has been a keynote and motivational speaker to various organizations and college students on cancer survivorship, trauma recovery and resiliency. Martha speaks in a raw, relatable fashion with vulnerability that encourages hope, healing, and recovery. She is author of the daily devotional “Spoken to Me:  Calming words from God for anxious, over-active minds” 

Martha holds a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Michigan State University. She is a certified Master Trainer for Chronic Disease Self-Management Programs including Diabetes, Cancer, and Chronic Pain as well as for Creating Confident Caregivers, Respecting Choices, and Matter of Balance.

Edwin Payne

Edwin is a facilitative leader known for his ability to promote vulnerability with in groups while kindly holding members accountable. He is a great listener who is able to discern and hear the underlying meaning or messages in group conversations. Having had the opportunity to live in multiple cultures beginning at an early age, Edwin has developed a sincere passion for all peoples. He is excellent at using a lighted hearted joyfulness and asking quality questions to move groups towards common goals.

Edwin has provided coaching, consultation, and counseling to various groups and organizations with the goal of building self-sufficiency and community capacity for the development of healthy communities. His facilitative experiences over the past 12 years include work with community mental health, higher education, and child welfare among others. 

Edwin holds an MA in counseling from Lincoln Christian Seminary. He went on to earn an MS in Community, Agriculture, Recreation, and Resource Studies from Michigan State University because he values the impact of communities and systems on the well-being of individuals. Edwin is also a Licensed Professional Counselor in the state of Michigan and serves as the Clinical Director of Jackson Counseling for WellBeing along with facilitating Cross-Cultural Conversations.

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2800 Springport Rd.
Jackson, MI 49202
Phone: (517) 796-4750

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