DIVERSITY, EQUITY, AND INCLUSION COMMITTEE
We welcome and celebrate writers and illustrators who represent a broad spectrum of backgrounds and who seek to create quality literature that reflects the lives of all young children.
To better serve our SCBWI-MI community, we aim to bring about change. To that end we commit to the following principles: INCLUDE, ENGAGE, EMBRACE.
- INCLUDE: We strive for the inclusion of marginalized and underrepresented communities in children’s literature within our membership.
- ENGAGE: We aim to fully engage members, communities, and allies by identifying resources and support available and other professional-growth activities.
- EMBRACE: We provide a ‘welcoming place’ to nurture and better support communication and networking within the diverse voices of our members, the community and potential members. Everyone has a seat at the table.
We understand the power of children seeing themselves represented in books. Such diverse reading experiences can lead to empathy, understanding and respect. It is vital that we do all we can to implement initiatives that will address issues of diversity, inclusivity and accessibility for our kidlit community that will in turn help us write books for all children.
The DEI Creates Community
Welcome to our Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee Webpage! Through this initiative we want to play a role in meeting the needs our of membership through service and opportunities for dialogue. Our committee is energized to create a stronger SCBWI-MI community that will inspire a deeper understanding of these key issues through the inclusion of diverse voices. Thank you for dropping by!
Our first monthly DEI blog will be featured in The Mitten starting in November. We welcome all dialogue!
MEET OUR TEAM!
Everyone has a voice in children’s literature! This summer I eagerly responded to the call to lead this SCBWI-MI committee focused on the tenets of diversity, equity, and inclusion. Growing up and situated in the rich tri-cultural background of Tucson, Arizona, I welcomed this new opportunity to enhance the visibility of underrepresented and marginalized voices in our chapter.
Through the actions of this committee and the support of our entire SCBWI network we can provide a welcoming place among authors and illustrators so that together we can: “Imagine a world in which all children can see themselves in the pages of a book” (We Need Diverse Books). I welcome and celebrate our members and invite you and your communities to engage with us as we embark on this adventure together!
A diversity committee is a bit like a lighthouse. It can be a beacon for those who feel lost, and a way to highlight those hard to see places. Getting the chance to work on this lighthouse is something very exciting because I think it will help me, a recent transplant from California, see Michigan and the SCBWI community here in a wonderful, fascinating, interesting way. I’m so stoked to learn and grow, and to be a part of other people’s learning and growing. Let’s, all of us, shine brightly!
Anyone can tweet #weneeddiversebooks. But what are we as authors, illustrators, parents, and teachers going to do to make that change? Many times people don’t buy diverse books, because they lack the awareness. I am Jewish, and I teach in Detroit. I observe how both communities can lack an understanding of each other. Not because of hate, but because of just living divided.
I believe the way to end ignorance is with knowledge. Therefore, it is important to me that SCBWI welcomes all voices to be heard and read by all members.
I jumped at the chance to serve on the Diversity Committee because I want to make sure every potential member feels welcome to join us on the creative journey of authors and illustrators. The tangible resources of SCBWI Michigan are valuable, but the intangible ones, including inspiration, friendship and support are priceless. I am delighted to enhance and enlarge a community that welcomed a Buckeye from Columbus, Ohio into an ever-widening circle of Michigan friends.
We all have unique differences. I am excited to serve on this committee to encourage others to celebrate diversity as I too become more informed. Our chapter is comprised of a wealth of creative differences, just as our story characters we will grow and transform through this journey. Engage with us as we promote literacy through inclusion, equity, and friendships.