Wednesday 12 May 2010

Culture and Diversity in Member Care—Part 8

Broadening Our Boundaries

Oh me oh my! Oh me oh my!
So many funny things go by.
Some with two feet, and some with four.
Some with six feet, and some with more.
Where are they all from? Who can say.
For sure they come from far away.
Dr. Suess (paraphrased) One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish

Member care is an international, inter-disciplinary field. People in the field are diverse. People we work with are diverse. In member care, as in global health, and as in life, we want to promote understanding, respect, and competency regarding human diversity and cultural variation.

As we have seen throughout these eight entries, multicultural competency is something we want to intentionally pursue in order to do member care well (e.g., cultural sensitizers, Resolutions, case studies, international cases/culture bound syndromes) Multicultural competency is also something which we naturally grow into as we connect with different people, places, and perspectives. In terms of Gestalt therapy, think of it as an ongoing process of “expanding our experiential boundaries” and “broadening our borders”.

The book mentioned above, One Fish Two Fish, is one of my favorites. It is a terrific place to conclude (or  also to start) our discussion. So many things we want to learn about life, including diversity and deviance, are found in this book. It is for adults as much as it is for children. In addition, as you read it carefully and reflectively with curiosity, you will most likely tap into your amazing inner world, filled with your own diversities and variations, congruence and incongruence, playfulness and seriousness, and many other lively polarities!

If you do not have access to this book, you can watch/listen via two You Tube videos (in two parts).

“Every day,
from here to there,
funny things are everywhere.”

Reflection and Discussion (and leave a comment!)
1. What did you think of the video version of the book?
Any favourite parts?

2. List three things about human life that you discovered in these books?
Any things about your own life?

3. Describe a couple ways how diversity and deviance are conveyed in this book.
Anything soothing or disturbing?

4. How can you use this book as a source to develop multicultural competency?
Or as a member care tool in other areas?

5. Which of the eight entries in this topic (over the past several weeks) were the most helpful for you and why? You might want to skim the entries again or perhaps go back to the first entry and review the outline. List three things you will practically do to increase your multicultural competencies.

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