Citizen, Scholar, Steward
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. 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.

We have affinity groups at KCD because we want to create open spaces where members of our 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 middle and upper schools.

Parent Affinity groups support the notion of an inclusive community by providing the space for diverse groups to self-identify, unite openly, and engage intelligently. Learn more about our parent affinity groups by emailing our Parent Association Diversity Chair.

Student affinity groups may vary from year to year, but typically include organizations such as BSU (Black Student Union), DLC (Diversity Leadership Club), Desi Club, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Girl Up, GSA (Gender/Sexuality Alliance), Hispanic Club, Interfaith Club, NAC (Native American Club), Kindness Club, Ghana Club, Women In Business, and MSA (Muslim Student Association).

FAQ: Affinity Groups

List of 9 items.

  • What is an Affinity Group?

    An affinity group, sometimes known as a resource group, is a gathering of people who share an identity (e.g. race, gender, religion, country of origin, language, family status, etc.). Individuals who participate in affinity groups recognize that their identity affects the way in which they move through the world. Affinity groups provide opportunities for participants to reflect on that shared identity and their experiences within the context of a community or an organization. Although members of the group may share an identifier, not everyone may share the same life experiences.
  • What are the benefits of affinity groups?

    The main purpose of an affinity group is to promote diversity and inclusion. These groups provide a space for individuals, usually members of historically underrepresented or marginalized groups, to connect, share experiences, exchange resources, and identify successes and challenges that impact their ability to engage with others or with an organization. Research has demonstrated that affinity groups are important for the healthy development and sustainability of organizations. There are many educational institutions, as well as corporations, that utilize affinity groups to improve communication, relationships, and collaboration with a diverse group of people.
  • What happens in affinity groups?

    Participants of affinity groups share personal successes, reflect on their own identity development, and support one another in identifying and addressing challenges that impact their ability to engage within the community. Facilitators set conversation norms and ground rules, create an agenda, support active involvement of all participants, and pose questions to members of the group that promote discussion and self-reflection. At times groups may engage in educational opportunities to learn more about that shared identity.
  • Can I participate in more than one affinity group at KCD?

    Yes. It is possible to be able to identify with more than one identity group. For example, same-sex parents and guardians of a student who is Asian American would be able to participate in the same-sex parents and guardians affinity group and the parents and guardians of Asian American students affinity group.
  • How often will KCD parent and guardian affinity groups meet?

    Parent and guardian affinity groups will meet approximately four times a year.
  • Why isn’t there an affinity group for me?

    KCD is a diverse community and we strive to provide multiple opportunities for families to engage with each other and contribute to the community. There are a number of groups in which parents and guardians are able to participate based on similar interests or group membership. As we develop the parent and guardian affinity-group program, we will continue to improve and respond to the needs of the community. The lack of a specific affinity group at this time does not necessarily mean that it will not exist in the future.
  • Shouldn’t we be having dialogues about our differences all together rather than in separate groups?

    We learn a great deal from conversations and interactions with people from all backgrounds and experiences, which happen on a daily basis at KCD. However, we have unique identities that make us see the world in different ways. Several people can be in the same room and experience the same thing, yet a woman might notice things differently than a man. A person of color might be impacted differently than a white person. A young person may interpret the situation differently than an adult. Often, we engage in intercultural dialogue without examining how our identity affects our perceptions, and we stumble into conflict because someone else does not “see” the same things we do. Having conversations in affinity groups allows us to begin to examine why we see the world the way we do and acknowledge that we all experience the world differently. This understanding engenders greater acceptance of other perspectives, allowing for more fruitful intercultural dialogues and interactions.
  • I already know what it means to be xxx. Could I hear what the yyy folks are saying?

    Affinity groups allow for an exploration of one’s own identity, celebration of shared identity, and debriefing of the common challenges and experiences that members of the identity group face. To have people from other groups present would require time to be spent on hearing from each group’s experience, explaining the nature of common experiences for different groups, and curbing conversation for fear of being misunderstood or offending. Often, we want to know what’s happening in another group because we worry that they are talking about us. Affinity groups are not designed for gossip or to put down other groups – they are designed to affirm the group that is gathering. It is true that we learn much from hearing people’s story. However, people from marginalized groups have historically faced the burden and frustration of having to teach others about their experience or being asked to represent their group’s perspective. Affinity groups can be a space safe from that burden and frustration. A better way to learn about another’s experience is to build genuine relationships and ask questions from a place of humble curiosity.
  • Shouldn’t we focus on our similarities and not our differences?

    At KCD we value difference and believe it is a strength of our school community. By only focusing on similarities, especially in diverse environments, we devalue, ignore, and minimize difference, and diversity begins to be associated with something negative or taboo. Talking explicitly about difference, celebrating and embracing it, honors diversity. Being able to talk about difference helps us to improve the ways in which we engage with diversity and with people who are different from us. Affinity groups allow people who are often considered to be different or whose difference is not always portrayed in positive ways to receive support and validation from others who share in that identity.

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  • Photo of James Racine

    James Racine 

    Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, & Community
    502-423-0440 x355
4100 Springdale Road • Louisville, KY 40241 • (502) 423-0440 • Fax (502) 423-0445
Kentucky Country Day School is a private JK–12, coeducational school located on a spacious 80+ acre campus in Louisville, KY. KCD combines a rigorous academic program with a wide variety of athletic and extracurricular programs. Our outstanding faculty creates an intimate learning environment that is both challenging and supportive.