In the challenging work of bridge-building, we often cannot tangibly see how our donations are impacting the world. But when bridge-builders share their stories, we can feel the shift in how lives are being impacted.

Meet the Belliards! Juan Carlos (JC) and Anastasia (Stacey) are both active members of the Be the Bridge community who have participated in our online courses and led their own BTB Group. They also partner with us financially to continue bringing our mission of racial healing, equity and reconciliation to life. They are a multi-cultural, mixed-race family (afro-latinx and white) with three children: Nicolás (Nico), Victoria (Tori) and their son-in-love Joaquín. Stacey is an Enneagram 1 and a pediatric physical therapist, and JC is an Enneagram 9 and a professor of public health  culture, race and health equity and disparities.

“The BTB Facebook Group has amazing resources in the educational units as well as the member dialogues. The BTB curriculum really breaks down the process of racial reconciliation step by step and makes it purposeful and strategic,” they shared. “The mandated listening and learning period was initially a bit off putting to be completely transparent, but it has proven to be one of the most valuable opportunities that BTB offers. We are all learning what Latasha refers to as the importance of listening to understand.”

Everything we are learning from Be the Bridge inspires important conversations around the table with our kids, extended family and friends. The ripple effect is powerful.

As BTB members, Stacey has also participated in BTB101 and continues to do the work of learning alongside her white friends, while JC is participating in the BIPOC Guide discussion group. They also recently co-led a BTB Group on Zoom, describing their monthly meetings as “difficult and awkward at times, tearful and inspiring, and always worth it.” Their group was diverse and representative in race, ethnicity, age and career stage.

“We had students, faculty, colleagues, bosses and employees all coming together from different cultures, faiths and backgrounds to talk about racial reconciliation amidst horrific current events often related to race,” they said. “We got really real with each other to say the least. But so much learning and empathy happened in those Zoom calls.”

Quick Q&A

3 things that bring them hope:
Be the Bridge, the faith of the African American community, YES magazine

Favorite hobbies:
JC – Bee keeping and gardening
Stacey – Running reading, spending time in nature

Most encouraging part about BTB:
Everything we are learning from Be the Bridge inspires important conversations around the table with our kids, extended family and friends. The ripple effect is powerful.

Most challenging experience in BTB:
Trying to overcome the huge challenge of meeting over Zoom to discuss BTB guides

Why do you choose to support BTB?
We truly believe that the Be the Bridge model of respectful, honest conversations and listening amongst diverse groups with humility is the foundation for true change in our world. We are honored to be under the leadership of Latasha and her team and gratefully support the work they are doing.

Will you partner with us on our mission to racial healing, equity and reconciliation?

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