What is an Affinity Group?
An Affinity Group is a group of people who share a similar identity. Although members of the group may have a common identity, it does not mean that everyone in the group has had the same experiences. Rather, the group is a place for reflection, dialogue, and support; it ultimately strengthens ties within the community. Facilitating positive identity exploration is central to creating an inclusive and thriving community.
Why do we have affinity groups at BFS?
We want to create open spaces where members of the Brooklyn Friends community can explore ideas about identity, share resources, mentor each other, learn, and grow. Affinity Groups are one way that we can support one another and are active in the Lower through Upper Schools, as well as among Faculty/Staff schoolwide.
Which Affinity Groups are offered to students?
- Faith/Religion Based groups:
- Atheist & Agnostic
- More Religions at BFS (Buddhist, Muslim, Spiritual, etc)
- Family Structure (Adopted, Divorced/Separated, Deceased, LGBTQ+, Mental Illness)
- LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans/Gender Non-Conforming, Questioning)
- Learning Differences
- Race/Ethnicity Based Groups:
- Biracial/Multiracial Students
- Middle Eastern/Arab
- African, Black/African-American, Caribbean-American
- Asian, East Asian, Pacific Islander
- Hispanic, Latino/a
- First Nation/Indigenous/Native American
- White Students for Anti-Racism
- International (1st or 2nd generation)
Which Affinity Groups are offered to faculty and staff?
Intersections, Jewish Affinity Group, Latin@/Hispanic Group, LGBTQ, MARSH Group (Men Against Racism Sexism and Homophobia), People of Color Group and the White Affinity Group.
What is Identity?
There are lots of layers to who we are and many different ways we may choose to identify or are identified by society. Identifiers include gender, race, ethnicity, nationality, religion or nonreligion, language, and sexual orientation, to name a few. Some identifiers are defined externally to us, by history, society, our family, etc. Others are internal choices that we make.
The way we identify may differ from how others see us and may change over time. Just because we share an identity with another person does not mean we experience it in the same way.
The Office of Equity & Inclusion and the Office of Service Learning & Civic Engagement collaborate to co-lead Brooklyn Friends School’s academic Department of Equity, Justice, and Civic Engagement. Created in 2015, the department further fulfills the school’s mission to integrate our commitment to equity, justice and civic engagement into the curriculum. If you have any questions, please contact department co-chairs Orinthia Swindell or Natania Kremer.