CRC Retreat: Leading & Learning
Greeting with fist-bumps instead of hugs, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Community Relations Committee (CRC) came together in July for their annual retreat. Held at the Charlotte Fire Department Headquarters, it was the first face-to-face meeting in more than 18 months and arguably one of the best CRC retreats ever. From the excitement in the room to the informative and impactful sessions, the retreat was a resounding success for so many reasons.
The annual retreat focused on the CRC’s origin, purpose, teambuilding and commitment to the community. To kick off the retreat, CRC members participated in an exercise led by Blue Heel, an organization that specializes in mosaic workshops centered around unity. The goal was to work together in small groups to develop a product that would represent the diverse ideas, experiences and perspectives of the larger group. Following this teambuilding exercise, the CRC executive director presented information on the structure of the CRC, its relevance throughout the years and how the CRC can remain impactful in the future. A key function of the CRC is the work done by its seven subcommittees. During the retreat, each subcommittee was given the opportunity to share updates, events and what is needed to be successful.
The morning sessions and activities set the stage for a powerful afternoon session entitled Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: It’s Bigger Than Black and White. The session was presented by CRC member Monifa Drayton and included exercises that would challenge members to explore their own biases, learned behaviors and how experiences shape interactions. The presentation helped members to better understand diversity, equity and inclusion, and the need for us to belong — all critically important to serving the Charlotte-Mecklenburg community and adeptly serving on the committee.
Navigating and conducting an annual retreat during a pandemic is not an easy task. Even with limitations, the retreat was able to provide an excellent opportunity for learning, collaboration and enlightening discussions. Building a strategy for the upcoming year remains a priority for the CRC. This retreat not only laid the groundwork for strategy development but also reinforced the members’ commitment to acknowledging and addressing the barriers that prevent equity and access for all.
Police-Community Relations Website Now Available
Strong relationships of mutual trust between the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD) and the communities they serve are critical to maintaining public safety and effective policing. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Community Relations works closely with CMPD to bridge the gaps and open lines of communication, trust and understanding between the officers and the community. Click here to check out the recently launched website to learn more about the partnership, programs, and ways you can stay engaged.