The Divided Community Project’s fifth case study examines Unity in the Community, volunteer-based San Leandro (California) organization and its ambitious efforts to unify a community marred in racial tension. Unity in the Community’s work began in March 2016 and was the result of a meeting between volunteer leaders from the civic community. The group convened in response to a series of racially charged hate incidents. The group defined its mission to “erase racism in San Leandro” and articulated a vision for “a community free of racism where we celebrate our differences.”
Drafted by William Froehlich, Deputy Director of the DividedCommunity Project, this case study discusses how the group evolved as it developed events to support its mission. The case study highlights many of Unity in the Community’s specific strategies for shifting from an organization which reacted to racially changed events, to one which takes intentional proactive steps to end racism in the community.