31 Jan Episode 185 | Building Bridges of Racial Healing
Julia van der Werf joined the show to share her insights into bridging cultural divides and how her life experiences led her on a journey of educating herself and others about the dynamics of race, ethnicity, culture, and God’s reconciliation.
Julia Van Der Werf
Julia Van Der Werf is committed to the lifelong journey of educating herself and others about the dynamics of race, ethnicity, culture, and God’s reconciling work that can only be accomplished by the power of Jesus Christ. A graduate of Penn State University with a degree in Elementary Education, Julia taught 4th and 5th grade for 5 years in Prince George’s County, Maryland, just east of Washington, DC. In 2001, she founded Daybreak, a non-profit ministry in one of the largest public housing communities in Washington DC. She worked alongside resident leaders to provide a community safe house for students to come after school and on weekends, and where they received tutoring, mentoring, Bible study, and more.
Since becoming aware of her own naïveté regarding the deep and systemic injustices that plague America, she has been committed to building bridges in a variety of community contexts including schools, churches, organizations and her own neighborhood. She has used her gifts of teaching, leadership, hospitality and administration to organize and facilitate educational opportunities, book clubs, and a “Be The Bridge Whiteness Intensive.” Julia and her family are members of Epiphany Covenant Church; a multi-ethnic, multiplying, Christ-centered movement in Minneapolis, MN where she serves on the church staff.