Our impact over the years is measured in attitudes.
We do constant feedback with students and teachers who participate in the program. This allows us to determine the impact of the program, as well as changes that we can execute to make it more successful in the future. However, this information is kept anonymous and private and is limited to individual participation and feedback. At the heart of our philosophy is creating the safe space needed to dive deeply into prejudice and discrimination, both from an outlook and experience perspective. Since we value privacy and hold it in the utmost regard, we generally avoid testimonials linked to groups.
From a general experience however, Nascenta excels at uncovering core issues of prejudice within groups. A good recent example was from one of our recent New York workshops. Groups from the city are general extremely understanding of racial and national diversity due to the diversity of the city itself. But the discussion became heated when we began looking at political diversity. Serious judgment of individuals based on their political views was present, and was delved into more deeply. At issue is that while we may not agree with political policies, prejudging individuals based on personal political support doesn’t help in our efforts to weed out prejudice and racism. Those with prejudiced beliefs should be held accountable, through education, debate and understanding. Understanding the reason for a belief is as important as the belief itself, since it helps inform other actions that the individual may take. In a polarized political environment, our program is able to identify points to focus on even in communities that are tolerant. This does not mean that we don’t force groups to account, or that prejudice cannot be differentiated in degrees; it just means that the program is well-suited to provide valuable input even when those individuals come from diverse or so-called tolerant backgrounds, as well as engage when individuals are unable to empathize with groups different to themselves.