Cultivating cultural consciousness and allyship

Developing racial literacy and cultural consciousness, and building allies is necessary for creating an equitable and inclusive society and contributes to a larger societal transformation. These are powerful tools for navigating the complexities of systemic racism in Canada which is home to many immigrant settlers, newcomers, refugees, asylum seekers, and migrant workers.

Challenging racist systems, ideologies, and stereotypes, acknowledging indigenous rights and history, and investing in equity, diversity, and inclusion programs to develop racial literacy and cultural consciousness, equips and empowers Asian Canadians with the knowledge and skills necessary to recognize and defy racism and become informed allies to those outside of their community.

Racial literacy and cultural consciousness involve being aware and respectful of the diverse cultural backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives of Canadian society and require a willingness to listen, learn, and engage in meaningful dialogue that promotes empathy, understanding, and inclusivity.

Similarly, allyship entails actively supporting and advocating for individuals who have experienced trauma, amplifying their voices, and working in solidarity toward creating an inclusive and progressive environment.



In partnership with the CENTRE FOR IMMIGRANT AND COMMUNITY SERVICES (CICS) and created in collaboration with educator, Sara Leung, we worked to support settlement workers and educators to create safer spaces for dialogue, facilitate anti-racism education, diversity and inclusion training, and foster informed allyship for newcomer and newcomer families.


Educator’s Tools & Resources

This learning series was created to help build capacity for members of our communities in education and includes videos, posters, and resources to support student learning (Grades 4 and up) with a facilitator’s guide for adults, educators, and parents.

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Sara Leung is second generation cisgender Chinese woman from Toronto. She is an experienced educator currently working as an equity consultant for the York Region District School Board. Sara has a Master’s degree in Leadership, Policy and Change in Equity and Inclusive Education from the University of Toronto.

Founded in 1968, the Centre for Immigrant and Community Services (CICS) is a not-for-profit organization and a registered charity that provides core settlement and integration services at eight locations across Toronto and York Region, serving more than 20,000 clients every year from early years children to seniors. CICS offers a full range of community services including employment, language training and settlement services, as well as community garden and food programs. CICS is also committed to building welcoming and inclusive communities by being a strong advocate for social justice and anti-racism. 

Supported by the Government of Canada.

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