When the country erupted in summer 2020 in the wake of the murder of George Floyd, nonprofits in the Upper Valley recognized the need to confront systemic and institutionalized racism as well as the marginalization of other community members. Yet—like Vital Communities—our boards and staff are predominantly white and middle class. How can we fulfill our missions and more fully engage people across socio-economic, cultural, and geographic differences?
Helping us get there is the goal of the Upper Valley Equity Exchange (UVEX), a new Vital Communities initiative funded by Jane and Peter McLaughlin and the Cotyledon Fund. The project creates a community advisory board to inform Vital Communities staff in selecting a cohort of the region’s nonprofits to work with a consultant to learn about systemic and institutional inequity and develop plans to expand their relationships with traditionally marginalized communities in the Upper Valley.
“The team at Vital Communities did what I know they do best: they collaborated with leaders in the Upper Valley and in the field of equity and inclusion to take a good idea and improve it dramatically,” said Pieter Bohen, Executive Director of the Cotyledon Fund. “We are pleased to be part of this effort to support nonprofit organizations in the Upper Valley in transforming their staffing, governance, and outreach to become more equitable and inclusive of traditionally marginalized communities.”
Questions? Email Rob Schultz at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please check back for further developments in this initiative!