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G E N D E R   R E C O N C I L A T I O N

Facilitation Team: Zanele Khumalo, Will Keepin, John Tsungme Guy, and Cynthia Brix,
Omega Institute, September 2014

Greetings and blessings for a joyous and peaceful
holiday season . . .  


2014 has been an expansive and fulfilling year for Gender Reconciliation International.  Our programs are expanding into universities, new NGOs, and new regions in multiple countries. We are delighted to share the year's highlights below, and introduce our new staff who are helping GRI to grow to the next level.   

We hope you are moved to donate to this vital work as it blossoms in new ways.  Your support will help us to bring the gifts of Gender Reconciliation to ever wider circles of people.   


Deep thanks to each of you for your participation, and for your generous support of our work. 

May 2015 be an inspiring year for you! 


With blessings and gratitude,


Cynthia, Will, and the GRI team 



Gender Reconciliation on University Campuses
Long-term Follow-up  - 
India, USA, South Africa

Omega Institute Conference and Post- conference Workshop

(click here) 


Gender Reconciliation on University Campuses

Gender relations between women and men on the university campus are in a state of crisis worldwide. University administrators, professors, and students in several countries have stressed to us the urgent need to create an atmosphere of safety, mutual respect, and trust between the sexes on college and university campuses. National and global media have widely publicized this crisis in higher education recently.  Several prominent academics are saying that the Gender Reconciliation program is a crucial part of the solution.  


Outreach to United States Universities

In response to the recent nationwide outcry regarding sexual violence on US university campuses, Gender Reconciliation International (GRI) is launching an outreach campaign to academic institutions in the Pacific Northwest, and selected universities across the country.  We are encouraged by initial responses from four universities. This campaign will expand significantly in 2015 - stay tuned!
Gender Reconciliation in South African Universities

Intensive three-day Gender Reconciliation workshops were successfully conducted in 2014 at three universities in South Africa: the University of the Free State (UFS), Stellenbosch University (SU), and the University of the Western Cape (UWC). We are especially pleased to announce that as a result, two academic research programs on Gender Reconciliation are being established - to implement GR on campus, and measure its efficacy and impacts over time.
  • At the University of the Free State (UFS) in Bloemfontein, 73 students participated in introductory Gender Reconciliation workshops over the past two years, invited by Professor Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela and Dean of Students Rudi Buys. 


Professors and students engaged in cross-gender dialogue
Gender Reconciliation Workshop
Stellenbosch University
Students participating in "Gender Rec Theater"
Gender Reconciliation Workshop
University of the Western Cape
  • In September 2014, the first formal academic research project on Gender Reconciliation was established between GRI and the University of the Free State (UFS).  The three-year initiative will be led by Professor Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela, a world renowned researcher on trauma and forgiveness, and research psychologist Dr. Samantha van Schalkwyk. Professor Gobodo-Madikizela serves on the board of the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation. Earlier, she served on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa as the lead psychologist responsible for mediating between victims' families and the state-sponsored terrorists of the Apartheid era.
  • At Stellenbosch University (SU) outside Cape Town, a group of 19 students and faculty participated in a 3-day introductory Gender Reconciliation workshop as part of the partnership between GRI and the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation and SU.  The workshop was attended by students, theology and psychology professors, and several university staff.

Men's honoring ceremony for the women

Gender Reconciliation Workshop 

University of the Free State

  • At the University of the Western Cape, a group of 27 students, professors, and community NGO leaders participated in an introductory GR workshop hosted by Professor Michelle Andipatin, Chair of the Psychology Dept., and psychology lecturer Charl Davids.  As a result, Professor Andipatin is initiating a new research project on Gender Reconciliation at UWC in collaboration with GRI, to implement Gender Reconciliation on campus and in surrounding communities where the university has outreach programs.

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Intensive Workshops & Long-term Follow-up   

India, USA, South Africa

Women's honoring ceremony for the men
Gender Reconciliation Workshop
Bangalore, India


  • Gender Reconciliation International was invited by a leading NGO in Bangalore, Dream a Dream, to conduct an introductory Gender Reconciliation workshop for 27 of their employees in February. We repeated the three-day program in November for 18 more staff (aged 18 to 36).  In partnership with Dream a Dream Founders, Vishal Talreja and Suchetha Bhat, GRI is planning a professional facilitator training to begin in 2015.   


South Africa

  • In October 2014, 19 participants from three different countries - Denmark, the Democratic Republic of Congo and South Africa - came together for a Gender Reconciliation workshop in Stellenbosch, South Africa.  The workshop was convened by Rev. Laurie Gaum and facilitated by GRI-certified facilitators in Cape Town. 
Honoring ceremony of women and men from
South Africa, Denmark, and the Democratic Republic Congo 
Gender Reconciliation Workshop
  • Chrysalis Academy, a holistic development and training initiative for youth-at-risk, hosted a Gender Reconciliation workshop for their staff and training team in early December.  The Chrysalis director and several senior staff will join GRI's professional training to begin in February, 2015.
  • Phaphama Initiatives in Soweto is incorporating Gender Reconciliation training into its Youth Mentorship Programme (YMP), as part of a government initiative in local communities.  In collaboration with Phaphama's founders Judy Conners and Jabu Mashinini, GRI plans to launch its second professional facilitator training in Soweto
    in 2015. 

United States

  • Introductory three-day Gender Reconciliation workshops were conducted around the United States this year in: Boulder, Dallas, St Louis, Lake Elsinore, CA, and Omega Institute, NY. Over 100 people participated in these workshops, two of which were organized by interns working toward their certification in the Gender Reconciliation professional training.

  • Long-term Gender Reconciliation groups, dubbed SOUL (Self-Organizing Ubuntu Learning) groups, have been established to follow up from introductory Gender Reconciliation workshops held in Texas.  Two SOUL groups have been meeting bi-weekly for two years. The groups were convened by GRI senior facilitator Dr. Julien Devereux, who reported that deep bonds of friendship developed, and the groups achieved a level of safety and mutual trust that all group members said they have never known.


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Women & Power Conference at Omega Institute 
GRI staff & consultants (left to right): Zanele, John Tsungme, Cynthia, Shell, Will, Antonia, and Natalia 

GRI founders Will Keepin and Cynthia Brix, and two GRI certified facilitators, John Tsungme Guy from the United States, and Zanele Khumalo from South Africa, were invited to present at Omega Institute's Women & Power conference, entitled Women & Men: The Next Conversation, in September 2014.  Other GRI staff and consultants also joined us. 


The conference was followed by a post-conference GR workshop at Omega with 18 participants from eight countries (Nepal, Amsterdam, UK, South Africa, Colombia, India, USA, Canada). 

Welcome new GRI Staff!


We are enthused to introduce several new staff who joined Gender Reconciliation International this autumn.  All are highly skilled professionals dedicated to our mission, and we are grateful for the infusion of fresh energy and talent that is helping to take GRI's work to the next level.  Welcome Judy, Essrea, John, Antonia, and Zanele!  

Essrea John Antonia Zanele

Judy Bekker is Director of Training for GRI in South Africa.  She is a professional facilitator with 30 years experience, specializing in personal and leadership development, communication skills, relationship building, and wilderness guidance.   

Essrea Cherin, MA is Operations Manager for GRI based in Boulder, Colorado, and brings a background in conflict transformation and resolution. She also teaches conflict resolution at Regis University.  

John Tsungme Guy, MA, LMHC is Program Officer for GRI based in Seattle, Washington. He is a licensed psychotherapist in private practice, with a background in group facilitation, addictions counseling, and contemplative psychotherapy.  

Antonia Porter, MA is International Program Officer for GRI, based in Cape Town and the UK. She is a conflict resolution practitioner with experience in South Africa, Nepal, India, Mozambique, USA, and the UK. She was formerly Project Officer at the Centre for Conflict Resolution.   

Zanele Khumalo, MA is Program Officer for GRI based in Cape Town. She is a professional facilitator with experience in diversity management, intercultural communication, alternatives to violence, and training young adult mentors of youth at risk. She was formerly Project Officer at the Centre for Conflict Resolution. 


2015 Goals
Plans for the Coming Year
  1. Implement Gender Reconciliation in Universities
  2. Train New Gender Reconciliation Facilitators in South Africa, India,
    Colombia, USA
  3. Introduce Gender Reconciliation at Parliament of World Religions
  4. Expand Fundraising, Monitoring and Evaluation, and Outreach of Gender Reconciliation Programs 

In Gratitude
for your contribution

We are deeply grateful for your support of our work to seed a profound transformation of gender relations, and to create a culture of unprecedented integrity, mutual respect, healing, and collaboration between men and women. 

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