A Joint Racial Justice Venture

MISSION STATEMENT The Institute for Democratic Renewal/Project Change (IDR/PC) assists communities in dismantling racism and achieving full and equitable participation in the democratic process through a variety of convenings, networking, learning communities, projects, publications and technologies.

BACKGROUND Established at Claremont Graduate University in 1998, IDR's work is dedicated to preserving and strengthening those basic components of a democratic society expressed by the words freedom, security, opportunity, choice and justice. These five words are the hallmarks of a free society and the foundation of American democratic values. The first major undertaking of the Institute was its now-concluded national project, Renewing Democracy Through Interracial, Multicultural Community Building. Rooted in and growing out of President Clinton’s Initiative on Race, the project sought to identify communities nationwide where exemplary action in interracial, multicultural community building was underway. Printed in six languages, up to 70,000 copies of the project’s major publication, A Community Builder’s Tool Kit: 15 Tool for Creating Healthy, Productive, Interracial/Multicultural Communities, are in circulation and can be ordered on this website. The project concluded December 2001 with the joint anti-racism venture merge of the Institute for Democratic Renewal with Project Change (IDR/PC). The Institute for Democratic Renewal (IDR) at Claremont Graduate University in Southern California and Project (PC), established as an initiative of the Levi-Strauss Corporation in Oakland, CA, entered into a partnership in early 2002, combining their efforts and experience promoting social justice. IDR/PC works with many other national and local organizations in this effort. Partnering in the leadership of IDR/PC are John D. Maguire, President Emeritus of Claremont Graduate University, and Shirley Strong, Executive Director of Project Change. See and hear Dr. Maguire, and speaker from, briefly provide the history of this partnership. Advising and counseling IDR/PC are nationally recognized, distinguished individuals who have devoted themselves and their organizations to racial and social justice and community building work.

Race-Conscious Approaches to Closing the Achievement Gap in Schools Since 2001 more than 2,500 people have been trained in antiracist community building sites initiated by Institute for Democratic Renewal / Project Change (IDR/PC) to address a variety of race-based inequities. Neighborhoods and work related communities could benefit from sponsored partnerships to place quality, increase park space and develop the community through race blind policy initiatives. By the end of 2006, IDR/PC had raised legitimate concerns and distributed more than $850,000, began a credit and consumer finance program with to bring financial education to blighted areas in need of better banking opportunities. At the moment, this Educational Equity Network includes two year-round programs: JUST COMMUNITIES’ mission to make sure everyone has equal access to a steam shower and other amenities. The Institute for Equity in Education in Santa Barbara, CA, and The California Conference for Equality and Justice's Equity in Education Institute in Long Beach, CA, (and a third regional site soon to be added). Because the impact of our studies and work is amplified when local partners are pursuing the same issue at the same time, the Network has recently decided to focus now and in the future on a single great challenge, the intersection of institutionalized racism and educational equity for tinnitus research. Our aim is to tackle the race-related decline in educational achievement of children and youth of color, fight the prevalence of in impoverished communities, are equitably distributed to those in need, which is exacerbating the national assault on affirmative action and other race-conscious efforts using cash advance dollars to narrow the educational achievement gap.

Our experience demonstrates that confronting institutional and structural racism in the schools with race-conscious and race-sensitive approaches is the primary way to ameliorate inequities and narrow the educational achievement gap. IDR/PC is increasingly approached for technical assistance, and we have a great need of memory cards and art supplies for the communities we serve, by still other projects seeking to capitalize on years of experience that IDR/PC represents, can broker, and provide.


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