Campaign: Initiatives


The process of naming our purpose and underlying beliefs has been so important for us to create more clarity, connection, and meaning to our work. Several of our consultants have already shared an immediate improvement in their ability to communicate about what, how, and why we work.


As an educator, professor, administrator, and now consultant, crafting learning experiences in a way that is authentic, meaningful, fun, and impactful is a personal sweet spot.


In many ways, today feels like the 387th day of March, 2020.

More than a year into the COVID-19 pandemic, our team of consultants is holding a tension. On the one hand, we are grateful to our clients for the opportunity to grow and to serve from the safety of Zoom. One the other hand, we feel the tremendous pressure, trauma, and learning loss the pandemic has caused, especially for students from Black, Hispanic, Indigenous, and low-income communities.


At MAYA, we are constantly evolving and adjusting our organization to make it more equitable. Everyone on our team plays a role in building a diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace. Over the last six months, we have added two new positions and so hiring has been on our minds a lot. Let’s be honest, hiring is a lot of work for both the company and the candidates. So often, processes are built to be quick and take shortcuts, but those shortcuts lead to a lack of equity. In rethinking our hiring practices, MAYA made some small and big changes to help strengthen our own hiring practices.


There has been no shortage of education in the news since March of this year. Recent news stories have cited educators as heroes for everything from the way they organize their socially distant classrooms to assisting in the distribution of food for their students. Are teachers heroes, absolutely! Is this recent heralding of educators as heroes problematic? Maybe. Why? Because they’ve always been heroic and now it’s our turn to support them.


Rakima Parson is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Registered Play Therapist a part of Centered Counseling and Consulting PLLC. This past fall, we met Rakima after attending her learning session on Keep Cultural Bias Out of Performance Reviews at Equity Space: Designing for an Inclusive Community. We were thrilled to reconnect with Rakima to discuss what it means to be a life-long learner, how caregivers can best support children at-home during quarantine, how to create belonging across communities during the pandemic, and the value of sweat.


Akasha Saunders is an educator and development coach fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion in organizations. The MAYA team has partnered with him on a project to build civic leadership for education in Austin. We spoke with Akasha about growing up in Jamaica, inclusive masculinity, cultivating connnection in virtual spaces, and where he is finding unmitigated joy under quarantine.


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