Date: January 31, 2019

VAN gathered 215 people at Village Church on January 31 for its Collaborative Community Forum entitled Responding to the Call: Advancing Racial Equity in Washington County. In partnership with Adelante Mujeres, Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon (APANO), Bienestar, and Coalition of Communities of Color, the forum convened a refreshingly diverse array of public, private, nonprofit, and faith-based participants, 40% of whom identify as people of color.

Attendees spent a furiously-paced half-day “crowd-sourcing” their best ideas on education, economic empowerment, and civic engagement – themes from the “Call to Action” of the Leading With Race research justice report. The conversation didn’t stop there, but continued as VAN and its partners engaged the wider community to present these ideas and gather their input. On April 29, all were welcome to join a second forum at Sonrise Church in Hillsboro to learn what we’d discovered along the way, and to identify some specific opportunities for collective action to advance racial equity in Washington County.