OUR PURPOSE

Together we can build a more diverse and equitable future.

About groundswell

What We Do

Schools-&-Youth

Schools & Youth

Working with one another to center relationships, equity, and belonging in our school communities. We reach students across middle and high schools to teach important conflict resolution skills through two main programs – BRIDGES and Restorative Schools Program
Mediation

Mediation Services

From direct mediation services to gaining tools as a better way to resolve conflicts, this body of work guides individuals to communicate more effectively and identify solutions. We provide individuals with the tools to turn conflict situations into a positive experience.
Trainings

Trainings

Training is one way we operationalize our mission of building a more equitable future. Our goal is to center our shared humanity and open opportunities for growth, change, and belonging. We offer training to empower leaders, to engage individuals, and to support communities.
Anti-Hate

Anti-Hate

We partner with nonprofits, community based groups, educational institutions and government offices to prevent and respond to hate activity through the Hate Prevention Network. We are most known for partnership with the County of Orange and it’s Human Relations Commission to collect, respond to and publish an annual hate report.

Get Involved

Upcoming Events + Trainings

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Where belonging is co-created and realized by all.

Our APPROACH

How We Work

Bridges

Bring people together

This initiative serves as a reminder that when we come together, we can create positive change and foster a sense of belonging for all.
Restorative

Partner to prevent and respond to conflict and harm

This initiative promotes cooperative partnerships aimed at proactively addressing conflicts, reducing harm, and fostering a safer and more harmonious community.
Human-Relations

Provide training, tools and support for leaders

This program offers essential training, empowering tools, and unwavering support to equip leaders with the skills and knowledge needed to excel in their roles and drive positive change.
Youth-Relations

Change the narratives

This endeavor seeks to transform prevailing narratives by promoting alternative perspectives and fostering a more inclusive and enlightened discourse in society.

Join the Movement

Together, we amplify perspectives, we create change, and we work to build a more collective, supportive, and belonging community.

Terms and Privacy Policy

We Are

“A broad, deep swell or rolling of the sea. A surge of support, approval or enthusiasm, especially among the general public.”

We are a Groundswell.

We are shifting energy. We are movement forward. Together, we amplify perspectives, we create change, and we work to build a more collective, supportive, and belonging community.

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Formerly OC Human Relations

About Bridges

Young people learn best in a safe, secure, inclusive environment. Unfortunately, this isn’t always easy to find for Orange County middle and high school students. Over the past twenty years, Orange County schools have experienced bias-related incidents and violence that have prompted administrators and teachers to contact OC Human Relations to help build inter-group communication, cohesion, and a sense of community on their campuses. In response, OC Human Relations created the Bridges: School Inter-Group Relations and Violence Prevention Program. Bridges is a multi-year program with the mission of improving inter-group relations by partnering with schools and communities to create, sustain and advocate for safe, inclusive school campuses. Bridges empowers members of the campus community to identify, investigate and address the human relations needs on their campus via trainings and dialogues. They acquire the skills to work with a diversity of people while improving the human relations climate on campus and addressing student success and opportunities. Their worlds grow larger as they are exposed to different people, backgrounds, cultures and experiences.

BRIDGES Safe and Respectful Schools Program

In 2006 a small group of Grantmakers including the Pacific Life Foundation, Orange County Children and Families Commission, Orange County Community Foundation, Irvine Health Foundation and Change a Life Foundation met to discuss the idea of forming a local, peer-based funding collaborative.

Restorative Schools Program

OC Human Relations Restorative Schools Program seeks to address the ineffectiveness and disproportionality that arises in more traditional school discipline systems by bringing a Restorative Justice perspective to the school setting.

Human Relations Ambassadors Program (HRAP)

HRAP is for young people who are looking to take the next step in their social justice journey by turning their belief in equality and respect into action. HRAP is a place to meet young people from across OC to discuss ideas, develop a support network and reach out to others with the message of respect, understanding and social justice.

Walk In My Shoes

The Youth Leadership Institute brings together diverse students from high schools across Orange County to participate in activities, dialogues and skill building exercises about human relations and social justice issues. Held over one or two weeks in the summer, students learned the skills to organize youth, take a stand against hate and injustice and create schools and communities that are safe and equitable for ALL.

Youth Leadership Institute (YLI)

The Youth Leadership Institute brings together diverse students from high schools across Orange County to participate in activities, dialogues and skill building exercises about human relations and social justice issues. Held over one or two weeks in the summer, students learned the skills to organize youth, take a stand against hate and injustice and create schools and communities that are safe and equitable for ALL.

YouthSpeak

OC Human Relations’ annual YouthSpeak Speech & Essay Contest features a county-wide search for the top human relations speech and essay written by middle & high school students.

“One thing I will do differently is accept everyone, no matter who they are and what they believe in.”

– High School Student