The National Social Justice Initiative (NSJI) is a joint project between Counselors Without Borders and the National Institute of Multicultural Competence. The aim of the project is to promote multicultural social justice projects throughout the United States and globally within our own communities that promote human dignity, human rights, equity, fairness, equal treatment, and equal access for those who are experiencing the effects of being oppressed and marginalized. The project is open to any professional or student in the field of mental health who espouses these values and would like to join a national network to offer counseling support in their local schools and communities through community-based projects.
The NSJI provides an opportunity to form a global network to develop small scale projects that begin with one person, one idea. It is a chance to go beyond our work lives and put into action our values for social justice and social change, towards creating healthier communities and a healthier society. The NSJI offers an opportunity to use our counseling skills and training that go beyond our work sites in ways that benefit our local communities and address issues within our communities, positively contributing to the world around us.
Beginning a project is simple. It involves you seeing an inequity or injustice in your surrounding community and deciding to take steps to address these issues. Addressing these issues will include using your counseling skills and training to assist those in need of your support and expertise. Projects can be on any scale, with any population, and done individually or with small or large groups of people. You could work with a school, a social service agency, a mental health program, juvenile justice or criminal justice programs, or agencies serving immigrants or refugees, to name just a few examples. Your NSJI project could focus on the public or private sectors. You can bring together one colleague or ten colleagues to join you, those of you who are professors or teachers can encourage students to reach out and participate in the projects, and you can encourage family members and friends to help as well. Core to any of the projects is the belief in improving our communities and our society, and the commitment to devote some part of your week towards multicultural social justice.
There is no enrollment fee to join the network and participation is completely voluntary. In order for us to share the successes and challenges of our work we are asking people who want to join the NSJI to sign up on the prior link so we can all see what we are doing. There is also a place where we can share our successes and challenges with each other, in hopes that we can all learn from one another.
If you are joining this initiative we welcome you. It is all about using our skills and abilities to help create a more harmonious, equitable, and just world.
What are the next steps? Please use the three links below to learn more, enroll in the program, keep up to date with the other projects, and share ideas.