Community members unite to talk diversity and acceptance


WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Thursday night the MLK Committee and the YWCA Lower Cape Fear hosted their first Potluck for Peace: Recognizing and Respecting Differences.

The even included food, fellowship and discussion. The discussion was led by Kimberly McLaughlin-Smith, the diversity and inclusion specialist for UNCW.

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“The message that I always try to send is that fear kind drives people apart, and so my job is to broaden the scope of way people see themselves and the people around them,” said McLaughlin-Smith.

Mclaughlin-Smith said one way to change perspectives is asking questions. During the potluck each person wrote down a question and submitted it anonymously, and then each question was discussed.

McLaughlin-Smith said having honest conversations about topics that can sometimes make us uncomfortable is the only way to break down walls to embrace our differences.

And many who attended say they have hope that one day our differences will longer separate us but unite us.

This event was a precursor to the MLK celebrations on Monday.