Dear CISV USA
While we can point to clear acts of racism over the last few months and question what has happened to our society, we should all recognize that these are not new or isolated events. They are symptoms of systemic racial problems throughout the United States. While many of you have been clamoring for an immediate verbal response by our organization, our response is meaningless unless we back it up with our actions. The Board of Directors of CISV USA is committed to putting its efforts into changing the tide of racial tensions in our country and abroad.
In these times when our communities are experiencing the impacts of racism, inequality, and violence, it is ever more important to acknowledge what we stand for as an organization and ensure that we are living up to our mission that CISV educates and inspires action for a more just and peaceful world. CISV USA also wants to renew its commitment to our core values of friendship, inclusiveness, enthusiasm, engagement, and cooperation.
While we are all called to individually examine the world around us and try to understand how we can make an impact, it’s equally important that CISV USA simultaneously identify areas within our own organization in addition to our sphere of influence to more impactfully reflect our mission and values. The Board of Directors is internally looking at ways we can strategically impact systemic racism that negatively affects us all. We will share more concrete plans in the near future.
Early last week, the President of our SoCal Chapter, Jude Albukhari, stated “we are living in a time where history is being written; we hope we will be able to look back and recognize the role we played as active global citizens.” More than ever, we are encouraged and determined that we as an organization and individually can contribute to a more just and peaceful world.
Stephenie Teichman, Chair
On Behalf of the Board of Directors