The name “Damascus Road” refers to the biblical story of Saul, who experienced a process of transformation on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:1-31). While Damascus Road (DR) provides space for individual transformation, the entire program is designed to work toward long-term transformation of institutions through the work of teams. Damascus Road (and other Roots of Justice programs) draws on stories and images from the Christian faith, but we welcome participants of all faiths and can tailor the training for secular contexts.
Though much of the DR Process’s attention is given to workshops and training events, we are careful to place this educational work in service to larger organizing goals of dismantling institutional racism. The entire process is designed especially for antiracism teams – groups that have formed to dismantle racism within their institution or community – though individuals may also attend some of the events. If your organization or community if interested in forming a team, download our Team Packet for more information.
The workshops involved in the process are summarized below, after a video introduction. Participants and trainers also offer these video reflections on their experience with Damascus Road.
Antiracism Analysis Training
This workshop, foundational for Damascus Road and other Roots of Justice programs, is accessible to both teams and individuals. The goal of this 2 1/2 day training is to:
- deepen the theological and philosophical foundations for antiracism work
- be exposed to an analysis of racism and build a common understanding of racism
- work together as a team to develop team relationships
After attending an Analysis Training, teams (and individuals) are encouraged to attend the Set Free and Fire & Clay caucusing retreats to deepen their analysis and engagement of their racial identities. In doing this work before focusing on organizing tasks can help strengthen teams and prepare them for the difficulties of organizing.
Antiracism Organizing Training
The goal of this 2 1/2 day training is to help teams:
- continue to deepen their shared analysis of racism
- learn basic concepts and skills for organizing within their team’s context (institution, community, etc.)
- develop a vision, goals and strategies for their organizing work
Antiracism Educating/Communicating Training
This 2 1/2 day training for teams can vary greatly from context to context and might include topics such as:
- concepts and skills for effective antiracist education
- developing a one-day workshop
- working with a multiracial facilitation team
- helpful ways to communicate an understanding of antiracism with others in formal and informal situations (board meetings, constituent interventions)
- practice and role play