Diversity What is diversity? the condition of having or being composed of differing elements Why is diversity important? Diversity is important because different backgrounds warrant different personalities and it’s essential to appreciate people for their differences, not ostracize them.
Imagine a world where… Everybody was the same Everybody had the same childhood The same experiences The same opinions The same thoughts Did the same things Said the same things Wanted the same things Hated the same things
Potluck It’s important to be diverse and have a mixture of cultures because life is a lot like the dinner table. Everybody has something different to offer and if you limit yourself to one thing, you’re going to have a very boring dinner. (All salad, or all meat, or all of the same thing) The most fulfilling dinners are the ones where you have a little bit of everything… just like life. If you allow yourself to experience a little bit of every culture, your life will be more fulfilling. Never judge a person by what they look like or disregard them because they have a different background.
Isolation The world is a big place and there may be times when you feel alone. That there is nobody there for you and nobody will listen to you or help you. You feel trapped. You feel isolated. Sometimes life can beat you down. There are times when things aren’t going your way and it just piles on and on. You feel like the weight of the world is on your shoulders and you can’t hold it up anymore.
Drug Use When times are hard, many people turn to drugs. When they feel isolated they use drugs as an escape or a method to take away the pain they are feeling. Drug use is a temporary distraction from facing your fears or problems. It is not a solution.
Suicide & Self Inflicting Pain Self inflicting pain would constitute as burning yourself, cutting yourself, hitting yourself, anything that is physically damaging and is done by you. Many people inflict self wounds to replace their emotional pain with physical pain. Suicide is the most drastic resort to get rid of pain. A person will end their life because they can’t handle the pain anymore, or because they feel like they have failed other people.
ARYNA : What is it? ARYNA is a program designed to confront the issues of racism, drug use, suicide, feeling abandoned, and stresses diversity, positive thinking, and inner strength. ARYNA causes people to step out of their comfort zone and open themselves up to strangers. Participants have to be willing to let themselves go and not worry about what other people will think of them, because everybody else will feel the same way. The goal of ARYNA is not to embarrass people or make them feel ashamed, but it is to open their eyes and make them see the truth.
ARYNA : The Program ARYNA consists of two activities Walk The Line XPRESSION ARYNA is better for a large group rather than a small group The more diverse the group is, the better it is for the program
Walk The Line The purpose of Walk The Line is to get participants warmed up Participants will become more comfortable putting themselves out there when they see other people crossing the line with them It’s also to get participants familiar to the type of questions that will be asked
Walk The Line – How To Do It The way to present Walk The Line is very simple The presenter will ask participants to stand on one side of a line of tape that is laid down on the floor Then, the presenter will go over instructions and reminders about the activity
Walk The Line - Instructions Any of the information learned about others during this program will not be shared with other people. You DO NOT have to cross the line if a question pertains to you but you do not feel comfortable crossing the line. The point of this is program is not to make people feel uncomfortable, but at the same time it is more rewarding if you put yourself out there. None of the participants will be judged, laughed at, or made fun of because of their past. Never feel ashamed of your past or who you are. It is important to be who you are and to never forget that.
Walk The Line – Example Questions Do you consider yourself to be Christian? Do you consider yourself to be Jewish? Do you consider yourself to be Muslim? Do you consider yourself to be Agnostic? Do you consider yourself to practice religion not already mentioned? Do you consider yourself to be Atheist? Do you consider yourself to be from a rich family? Do you consider yourself to be from a poor family?
Walk The Line - Continued Each presenter can modify the list of questions as they see fit It would be best to have questions that pertain more to your group of participants (ex. It wouldn’t be wise to ask college students how stressful it is paying for a mortgage) If presenters come up with other high risk questions (questions that would provoke an intense emotional reaction), it would be best to include it in the second activity, XPRESSION.
XPRESSION The purpose of XPRESSION is to open participants up and make them see that no matter what they go through, other people are there for them and have gone through similar experiences. XPRESSION is designed to make participants see the truth. That even though life can bring you down, there are always people there that can you bring up and you yourself can bring yourself back up.
XPRESSION – How To Do It The presenter will prep the participants and let them know that the next stage of ARYNA is more high risk If participants aren’t comfortable enough with the high risk questions, they do not have to answer and respond to them. It is completely up to them but it is more rewarding and a better experience if they participate
XPRESSION - Instructions Presenters will give each participant a sheet of paper and different colored markers. They will then explain that high risked questions will be asked and each time a question pertains to them, they will draw a straight line from one side of the paper to the other side. The participants will be separated from each other to protect people’s privacy.
XPRESSION - Continued After all the high risk questions are asked, the paper of each participant will be taped up in a straight line The participants will then stand away from it and look and see the visual representation of their past
ARYNA – Why? The visual representation of everybodys past will make them see that other people have gone through tough times like they have and that they have a support system Even though everybody has a past filled with scars, there is ALWAYS someone there to help heal those scars. They may not be right in front of them, but they do exist and they can be found.
Motivation Everything happens for a reason. The reason may not be obvious, you may not find it out for days, weeks, years, or you may never find out. But just know, that everything happens for a reason. As long as you put your mind to it, you can do it. If you believe you can do it or can’t do it, either way you’re right. Always stay true to yourself. Nobody is worth sacrificing your self respect for. If you don’t love yourself…nobody else can.
Motivation “The only one who can beat me is me.” – Michael Johnson “The trials on the road to world harmony are no greater than the courage of those who accept the challenge.” – Carl Lewis “Always look at what you have left. Never look at what you have lost.” – Robert H. Schueller
Motivation Continued "It is a shame that in this society weve been taught to judge a mans worth by what he owns instead of who he is. Everything is surface, and so few look beyond it. A man will sell his soul, he will lie, cheat and steal, for money. If he has it, he can buy respect. Wear the right clothes, drive the right car, have the right friends, thats all that matters. Our lives are consumed in a selfish, self absorbed quest for possessions, the latest and the best in a never-ending cycle until the day we die. We forget what it means to be truly human. We forget the things that really matter. We lose the magic of what life should be. I wont live by rules that make no sense to me." - Evan Tanner
More Motivation "Believe in yourself. Believe in your own potential for greatness. Believe that you can change the world. It is something that is within each of us. Believe in the Power of One" - Evan Tanner
Our Deepest Fear… "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesnt serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people wont feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us: its in everyone. And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others." - Nelson Mandela