Diverse and Equitable Outreach In Your Chapter

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This training reviews the foundations and building blocks for a CCL chapter culture that is healthy and inclusive as well as how to foster healthy and inclusive chapter environments, cultivate chapter cultures that keep volunteers of all backgrounds engaged and conduct equitable outreach during your chapter's events.
TOC and Guide Section

Learn What You Can Do For Your Community

Ask not what your community can do for you, learn what you can do for your community.

CCL encourages volunteers to find their own area of passion in their advocacy for climate solutions even if this work will not be their primary focus. We have lots of tools that build confidence, learn organizing concepts, and allow people to network in a way that promotes deeper listening and understanding beyond differences we may have.  Our culture of compassion is what will keep people with us and encourage them to invite others.

What do we organically provide to people who join CCL? 

  • Education 
  • Professional Development
  • Skill building
  • Community Organizing
  • Compassion

Watch CCL's Diversity & The Climate Movement training to learn more about the historic and cultural barriers for people of color in the environmental movement and helping your group with strategies and tools to expand your chapter’s diversity footprint and become more inclusive through representing a more complete array of your local community’s constituency.

Research Local Impacts to Environmental Quality

Read up on the current local impacts community members throughout your town or city face with environmental quality to expand your vision of environmental advocacy.

Many people from diverse communities care about the environment. The messaging may just be different, and the connection to climate may be more subtle based on the community’s approach and key concerns. Our conversation about the environment is about everything around us.

Consider in your own outreach to not immediately advocate for the bill in other communities because political will and policy support is something that has to happen naturally.

When we jump into our priorities, we’re cheating ourselves out of conversations that need to be had about improving environmental quality that affects every area of our lives and health. Look at it this way. No one would be fully motivated to build political will for anything if they don’t have a very clear and vivid picture of how it affects their personal world. 

The conversations about politics and environment will happen naturally, and if you challenge yourself to leave space for it in due time, you will do a service to yourself and the community and elected officials will be more likely to engage when you have broad constituent support. 

Learn From Other Sectors

Think outside the box when brainstorming ways to diversify your own group. Look at companies or successful diversity initiatives that inspire you. What were they doing and how did they make it happen?

Create a plan or structure with similar actions and processes in mind. 

When Entering New Spaces

Language to reconsider using: Diversity 

“We’re working to increase diversity in CCL and our local chapter.”

Language to incorporate instead: Compassion, Culture, Truth,  Equity, “All of us” 

“We’re working to create a culture of compassion based on truth and equity to create a better world for all of us.”

Practice activity: Define the importance and need for diversity within your group without saying “diverse” or “diversity” in your explanation.

If you heard both of these descriptions of diversity work, which would you be more willing to learn more about? 

Please remember words definitely matter. Good intentions don’t always sound good. As CCL Diversity Outreach Coordinator, Princella Talley shares in the “Watch” video: “When I’m working with people in economically disadvantaged communities who don’t know my intentions, I am mindful that in some communities saying things like “we need diversity” often sounds like it's tied to a corporate agenda or a numbers game. There are so many other things we can say to describe this work.”

Building Your Group Morale

Dedicate a piece of your chapter to incentivizing frequently and meet the small and major milestones with the same level of enthusiasm. 

Build morale by appreciating others. Valuable incentives don’t always require money.

Always show your folks that you’re appreciative of their work.  Don’t just incentivize when there have been major accomplishments. 

You want to let everyone know you appreciate all efforts without favoritism or judgment toward the amount of progress made.

Act & Evaluate

3-2-1 Approach: A Commitment To Action

Working in new communities can be challenging and uncomfortable, and you may plan for ways to do everything right. However, no plan can be perfect and it’s important to take action before falling into analysis paralysis. Small groups with focused efforts can have major impact. 

To try out a 3-2-1 Approach in your own outreach:

Ask yourself these three questions:  

  1. What do we provide that’s unique to our target audience and issue? 
  2. Can we pull this off?
  3. When do we let go?

Then gather two friends or chapter members to answer these questions as a team. 

Next, each team member should take one action step that could move you forward toward your goal. It’s likely that within three weeks, you’ll see unexpected progress. 

Tip: While we can’t be perfect, we can make fewer mistakes and become a more trusted ally by listening when in new spaces and continuously educating ourselves for a deeper level of understanding and awareness. Listen instead of leading. 

3 I’s of Evaluation

Evaluate your last chapter effort or project using the 3 I’s. You may be surprised by what you discover!

Insight: What did everyone think about the effort?

Improvement: How could it be better?

Involvement: How do you involve more people including your opposition? 

Evaluate with everyone to create a sense of shared power as decisions are being made. 

Case Study: Third Coast Regional Conference

Princella summarizes a case study of using this framework in action during the “Watch” tab video. She reflects that her team’s goal came from recognizing that multisector co-beneficial relationships are crucial to the diversity efforts in the Third Coast.  

They visualized what successful outreach would look like in their chapters, then discussed ways to realize that vision with chapter members. 


  • Environment and Global Health curriculum in development for the students who attended
  • Earth Day Celebration with regional coordinator Susan Adams as a special guest
  • Regional diversity (youth and people of color) increased dramatically

Learn how you can be a better multisector collaborator. What are other communities already working on and what do you bring to the table as a climate advocate supporting work already in progress?

  • Learn community issues and concerns
  • Identify barriers
  • Work in solidarity with community leaders
  • Create access
  • Prove commitment to inclusion
Looking For More Support?

Join the Climate & Culture Action Team, whose mission is: We aim to create a supportive culture merging community engagement and leadership development to address climate change in diverse communities.

We acknowledge that climate disparities intersect with a multitude of issues. Our response is to serve as allies to ongoing community efforts focused on creating a better world.

This training was created by CCL Diversity Outreach Coordinator Princella Talley: Princella.talley@citizensclimate.org 

Press play to start the video (39m 48s)
Video Outline
To skip ahead to a specific section go to the time indicated in parenthesis.

(from beginning) Intro & Background 
(3:51) What is Outreach, Onboarding, Engagement and DEI?
(10:13) The "You" in Outreach
(16:34) Nurturing Relationships
(25:18) Onboarding & Engagement
(32:20) Chapter Development Resources

  • Danielle Whyte

Download Google Slides presentation.

Download the video.
Audio length
Press play to start the audio (39m 48s)
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Audio Outline
To skip ahead to a specific section go to the time indicated in parenthesis.

(from beginning) Intro & Background 
(3:51) What is Outreach, Onboarding, Engagement and DEI?
(10:13) The "You" in Outreach
(16:34) Nurturing Relationships
(25:18) Onboarding & Engagement
(32:20) Chapter Development Resources

  • Danielle Whyte
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Go Deeper

For questions about CCL’s national diversity work, please contact CCL’s Diversity Manager, Karina Ramirez: karina.ramirez@citizensclimate.org

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