Capturing Impact

Our Recap of A Gathering of Leaders 2014

Brown Boi Self-Love & Resiliency! The Brown Boi Project hosted a workshop on its mental health model for boys and men of color, one centered on self-care, relationships, and healthy masculinity.


Erica Woodland Brown Boi Project
B. Cole Brown Boi Project

Main Points

  • The Brown Boi Project offers leadership retreats twice a year for rising leaders of color ages 17–35. They are a “vehicle for a movement” and so far have trained a total of 150 leaders, organized in 10 cohorts.
  • Participants Jonathan, Rico, Carla, and Lex reflected on their retreat experiences.

Key Strategies

  • Create a sense of ceremony by knowing that what we do is sacred.
  • Draw up and keep a Group Agreement.
  • Approach the work with a lightness and have a bit of fun.

Action Steps

  • Maintain the “one mic” policy (one person talking at a time).
  • Practice active listening.
  • Speak from your own experience.
  • Don’t put down what other people are saying.
  • Hold a safe space and respect confidentiality. “What happens here, stays here.”
  • No cell phones.
  • Hold one-on-one interactions for growth.
  • Hold everyone to their highest self.

Standout Quotes

"Mess stuff up and be brown about it."
"We don’t cosign bullsh**. By doing so, you allow people to sustain things/thoughts you know aren’t cool."
"It is faster to change the body than to change the mind."