Organizations in Boston work towards greater equity and inclusion in partnership with YW Boston
This past year, organizations continued to face new and existing challenges during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. During this time YW Boston partnered with many organizations by supporting them with their Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) strategies to ensure they were responding equitably to COVID-19 and that they stayed accountable to their stakeholders. Every organization faces a different set of DEI challenges and has its own inventory of resources to tackle them. Throughout their journey towards greater equity and inclusion, many of our partners have shared insights from their work with YW Boston as part of our DEI Services. Here are some highlights of the progress we’ve made together in support of more equitable organizations in Greater Boston and beyond.
What are YW Boston’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Services?
YW Boston has been at the forefront of advancing racial and gender equity for more than 150 years. Our mission of eliminating racism has been a core tenet of all our programs over the course of the last 30 years, and we have fine-tuned our focus on organizations over the last 20 years. Achieving greater DEI requires change in various dimensions—policies, practices, attitudes, and behaviors. Changes in people’s attitudes and behaviors regarding social identities, such as race and gender, coupled with supportive policies and practices will lead organizations to be more inclusive. YW Boston offers a variety of DEI Services designed to create lasting change.
YW Boston’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Services
InclusionBoston: Long-term organizational partnership designed to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion at all levels.
LeadBoston: Cohort-based inclusive leadership development program for mid- to senior-level professionals.
UncoverBoston: LeadBoston, our inclusive leadership program, facilitated for cohorts within the same organization.
DEI Workshops: Facilitated trainings that build knowledge, communication, and culture.
Forums: Facilitated interactive presentations about current events.
DEI Community of Practice: Unique space for DEI practitioners to collaborate and problem solve.
How they work—why is YW Boston’s approach so unique?
Achieving greater DEI requires change in various dimensions—policies, practices, attitudes, and behaviors. Changes in people’s attitudes and behaviors regarding social identities, such as race and gender, coupled with supportive policies and practices will lead organizations to be more inclusive. YW Boston’s approach resides in change theory practice for both individuals and organizations. This practice borrows from public health, organizational learning, organizational change, strategic renewal, and policy change. Our DEI Services focus on change at three levels: micro (changes to an individual’s knowledge, attitude, behavior, and self-concept,) meso (changes in cultural and interpersonal interactions,) and macro (changes in the policies and practices of institutions and communities.)
Fired up more than ever: Reflections from a YW Boston DEI Services partner
Pauline Lucido has become “empowered and fired up now than more than ever” because of participating in YW Boston’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Services. She is amongst a handful of individuals who have partaken in both InclusionBoston and LeadBoston simultaneously. Pauline learned about YW Boston from attending our Academy of Women Achievers Celebration annually. Here, she became interested in participating in LeadBoston because she wanted “to create equitable opportunities for women and people of color.” In 2020, Pauline’s company, Northland Investment Corporation, introduced a DEI initiative and began working with YW Boston’s InclusionBoston. And just a few months later, Pauline joined the LeadBoston Class of 2021. She knew participating would “afford me the opportunity to participate in the change that we felt was needed in making my workplace diverse, equitable, and inclusive.” Pauline describes being a part of both InclusionBoston and LeadBoston as eye-opening. Both partnerships gave her a perspective on our city’s inequities and an understanding of how these systems can change.
“LeadBoston is my in-depth class where I have the reading assignments, thought provoking pre-class work, and hear from guest speakers on the various DEI topics that impact Boston as a city, and the communities and workplaces around it. InclusionBoston is my practical application class where I get to apply what I am learning.”
Pauline is already seeing how YW Boston’s DEI Services have impacted her organization. They’ve created a DEI Steering Committee comprised of employees across the organization to continue leading their internal change work. As she brings together what she has learned in LeadBoston and what her organization has learned as a part of InclusionBoston, Pauline is “optimistic this will result in creating an environment that celebrates diversity and is
equitable for all employees at Northland.”
YW Boston is building more inclusive spaces through our DEI Services
In 2021, YW Boston facilitated 141 DEI Workshops for over 4,000 participants and worked with 36 organizations as part of our InclusionBoston partnership. Our InclusionBoston participants reported that after just 5 weeks of dialogues, participants were more likely to secure information and resources for diverse colleagues. Your organization can also unlock the power of diversity, equity, and inclusion. Whether your organization is large or small, you’re just starting out with DEI, or are further along on the journey, YW Boston will work with you to find the right solutions.
Ready to unlock the power of diversity in the workplace? Click here to learn more about InclusionBoston and request your free consultation. You can also get in touch with Sheera Bornstein, Director of Partnerships, at firstname.lastname@example.org.