Racial Equity Learning Community

The Racial Equity Learning Community is a cross-county, multi-sector initiative for organizations in Bucks and Montgomery Counties to come together to learn, build relationships, and take action that deepens organizational and collective capacity to advance racial equity and justice. The national best practices of the nINA Collective trainers paired with the expertise and local knowledge of coaches and participants creates a strong framework to advance and sustain learning and equitable action in our community.

Photo credit: artwork by Nikkolas Smith

Learning Community Framework

Organizational Learning

Organizational Action

Community-Building & Action

10 sessions or 21 training hours + 9 coaching hours
Organizational self-assessment related to racial equity + organizational racial equity action plan
Issued-based work groups beginning winter 2023


Racial Equity

Join Us!

Please review the organizational commitment, and if this Learning Community aligns with your organization’s readiness, availability, and goals, join us! Participation is offered without cost for up to 30 organizations thanks to the generous investment of RELC funders. Our deep thanks to these funders for their partnership and support of this work! Our big thanks to Montgomery County Government for joining this Learning Community with an additional, government cohort. We are grateful for your commitment to advancing racial equity and justice in this region!

The application process is open September 5 - October 31, 2022. The Racial Equity Learning Community begins January 4, 2023!

The planning partners, the Bucks-Mont Collaborative, Tri-County Community Network, and Interagency Council of Norristown, have made a minimum 3-year commitment to help coordinate this Learning Community.

Complete the Application

Meet the Coaches!

Marianne Kaplan is the founder of Kaplan Consulting Network. She holds a Master’s degree in Organization Development from American University and an undergraduate degree in psychology from West Chester University. Marianne is certified in numerous psychotherapy and coaching models and instruments including Gestalt, Hakomi, Myers-Briggs, EQ Profile, and the Enneagram. The Kaplan Consulting Network is committed to issues of social justice and to increasing the voices of non-dominant social groups in our society.


Dr. MaNesha Stiff is the owner and founder of Metanoia Solutions LLC. MaNesha is a seasoned diversity, equity, and inclusion practitioner known for her bold approach to transforming hearts and minds around DEI. She believes there is no “cookie-cutter” path to advancing DEI and strives to create unique experiences that meet organizations and individuals where they’re at, while working alongside them, challenging them and supporting them to continuously grow along their journey. MaNesha holds a Ph.D. in Education, with a concentration in Higher Education Leadership from Capella University, demonstrating her DEI leadership in senior positions within global organizations.

A detailed learning designer and a powerful facilitator at all levels, MaNesha brings a deep lived experience with knowledge of organizational strategy, and the all important wisdom of how people need to feel as they learn and change. Her intercultural work also plays a role in how she approaches this field. In July of 2022 MaNesha completed her term as President of the Illinois chapter of the Association of Black Women in Higher Education and is a racial equity coach, mediator, and Peace Circle facilitator. In her spare time, MaNesha enjoys working with her mentoring group for young Black and Brown girls, and playing with her dogs, Honeychild, Velvet, and Cocoa.

Convening community-based services and integrating participatory research and education, the Social Justice Initiative (SJI) utilizes four pathways - forgiveness, courage and compassion, cultural humility, and radical love - to advance the knowledge, values, and skills essential for dismantling the structures and systems of injustice in all its manifestations, recognizing that racial inequities and disparities are central to them all.

The SJI seeks to co-create a more equitable world for individuals, families, organizations, and their communities. The SJI provides space for dialogue and reflection through publicly accessible webinars, podcasts, and events as well as coaching and consultations with executive directors, administrative and direct service teams, governing boards, and clients/consumers, largely in the not-for-profit sector. This work has resulted in the SJI’s learning, unlearning, and relearning, which is shared throughout the SJI network of approximately 300 individual and organizational collaborators.


Darlyne Bailey, PhD, LISW, Professor & Dean Emeritus and Director, Social Justice Initiative, Bryn Mawr College; and MSS Candidates, Sarah Spath and Gwenn Prinbeck

The Kyla Alliance is an integrated coaching and consulting practice committed to equity, justice, and well-being for individuals, organizations, and communities, with founder and principal consultant, Kelly McNally Koney. Throughout her work, Kelly weaves compassion, collaboration, and critical consciousness for radical transformation. Kelly holds degrees from The Ohio State University (BS) and the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences at Case Western Reserve University (MSSA) where she was employed for eight years and first experienced the power of participatory action research and appreciative inquiry (two methodologies she continues to incorporate) to uplift and amplify traditionally marginalized voices in change efforts. Kelly is assistant editor for Reflections: Narratives of Professional Helping, an online journal that centers the healing power of personal stories in professional development, as well as co-author of numerous publications, including Sustaining Our Spirits: Women Leaders Thriving for Today and Tomorrow. Kelly is involved in various initiatives promoting anti-racism, food and land sovereignty, and environmental justice. She cultivates her own personal balance by connecting with the earth, something she does regularly as a part-time employee at Flying Cloud Farm and during meditation, yoga, and hikes in the Blue Ridge Mountains of western North Carolina.
YWCA Bucks County is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. YWCA USA has been at the forefront of nearly every major social movement since its founding over 160 years ago. Since 1954, the YWCA has been a leader in the realm of racial and social justice work in Bucks County. The YWCA knows that in order to lead the charge against racism, it must also consistently address internal issues of race head on. This is a challenging, self-reflective task that the YWCA takes seriously, and can share its experience with others in their journey.

YWCA Bucks County staff have significant professional experience in facilitating educational opportunities focused on racial and social justice; all staff are trained in facilitation, mediation and program delivery. This work extends to local schools, non-profit organizations, businesses and individuals. Through the development of a Racial Equity Action plan, the YWCA’s goal is to provide each organization with support to build and/or increase their own capacity to create a culture of equity through organizational learning, organizational action, and community building and action.


Kristin Chapin, Associate Director

YWCA Tri-County Area is on a mission to eliminate racism, empower women and promote peace, justice, freedom and dignity for all. We envision a world where equal promise exists for all and stand in solidarity with our community against injustice everywhere. The YWCA is committed to on-going reflection, improvement, education, and alignment with concepts, practices and approaches relevant to both the mission and to sector trends and standards.

Racial equity is prioritized as a key factor in all program design and is paired with trauma responsive practices to provide the most dignified experience for employees and clients, including community members, educational systems, community partners, and for- and not-for-profit organizations.


Kelly Grosser, Chief Mission Impact Officer and Sarah Stump, Mission Engagement Manager


Thank you to these wonderful Learning Community funders!