What is it?
Cultural humility is a lifelong commitment to self-reflection and critique which challenges us to learn about another’s experiences but begins with examining the self. It demands that we explore assumptions, bias, and values in order to effectively engage with an ever-diversifying world.
Why does it matter?
Cultural Humility is the culture of United Way of King County. As we work to build financial stability for 50,000 people by 2020, we must confront the inequities that contribute to systemic poverty.
Our staff, volunteers, clients, and community partners represent diverse experiences and identities. Each year, we want to grow the tax family– and we want to do that responsibly and effectively.
How does it apply to the tax program?
When we recognize the value, expertise and contributions of all of our tax team members, it builds strength in the community and improves our program.
Top tips for tax sites:
- We must work to practice humility and flexibility with all partners.
- Our clients are the experts on their own lives and situations.
- We hold a body of knowledge that the client may not, but they also have an understanding outside the scope of ours.
- Collaboration and exploration are key. Ask questions!
- Avoid advice-giving and judgment.
Where can I get support at my site?
- From your site manager!
- Through conversations with fellow volunteers
- By accessing the resources and community events in the toolkit!
*This content has been adapted from the cultural humility framework established by Melanie Tervalon and Jann Murray-Garcia. The complete overview of their model can be found in their journal article: “Cultural humility vs cultural competence: A critical reflection in defining physical training outcomes in multicultural education.” Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, 9, 117-125.