At United Way, we're committed to equity in our work -- from interacting with the public, to engaging with donors, to allocating resources across our community.
We must serve the most disadvantaged and disenfranchised groups in our region effectively and we know that focusing on race and ethnicity is critical to ending the historical and social inequities that continue to exist in our region.
We also know that tremendous assets exist within traditionally underserved communities. Within these communities are our current and future community leaders and community change-agents. United Way is committed to working with diverse communities and individuals as partners, donors and volunteers. We can only eliminate disparities when people from our region have the opportunity to make a difference.
We strive to reflect the demographics of the community on our board, on our staff, in our funding decisions and in our community engagement efforts. We incorporate equity principles and practices in our hiring, promotion and retention policies and hold ourselves accountable for creating United Way’s culture of diversity and inclusion.
With our investments and partnerships, we place priority on culturally specific organizations. Those are organizations in which:
- The majority of clients served are from a specific cultural community (e.g. African American, African, Asian, Pacific Islander, Native American/Alaska Native, Latino/Hispanic, Slavic),
- There is a predominance of bilingual and/or bicultural staff and board that reflects the community served (e.g. African American, African, Asian, Pacific Islander, Native American/Alaska Native, Latino/Hispanic, and Slavic),
- The organizational environment is culturally focused and identifiable by consumer as such; and,
- The organization or program is established and successful at community engagement and involvement with the culturally specific communities being served.
Based on the definition in the Coalition of Communities of Color's Philanthropy Report.
Diversity and Inclusion
Diversity, inclusion and equity are fundamental values for United Way, both internally and externally.
We work to create solutions to the challenges of poverty in our region for the kids who need it most. We know that communities of color face the greatest disparities in terms of childhood poverty. That’s why equity is so important to our work in the community.
Staff and Board Diversity
We’re proud to be able to say that our staff and board demographics reflect the diversity of the four-county region we serve.
Internal Diversity Work
We have a variety of internal committees and work groups that staff are encouraged to join. One is the Equity Action Team. This group serves as a sounding board for new internal policies and procedures to make sure that we’re taking into account diversity and inclusion. It also helps with diversity-related projects, such as staff diversity trainings, assessing our equity as an organization and developing an equity lens for our work. Finally, the group leads our involvement in external cultural events in the community.