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Equity, Diversity + Inclusion

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A Leadership Model for Race Equity Impact
This leadership framework is a tool to support individuals and organizations in identifying how their practices can create and sustain race equity experiences and outcomes within the social sector. It is based on experience, research, and perspectives from the ProInspire team and many thought partners, and they expect to keep iterating on it as they continue to work with the model and gather more feedback.
Article/Blog, Guide/Tool, Podcast, Research/Report
Ageism refers to discrimination and bias on the basis of age and manifests both as discrimination against older people (and sometimes younger people as well), and as a privileging or idealizing of youth. The following resources provide more resources and research about ageism as well as resources for building more age-positive organizations and communities.
Allegories on Race & Racism
An excellent TEDx talk by Dr. Camara Jones, who shares four allegories on “race” and racism which illustrate through stories and metaphor how racism operates at institutional, interpersonal and internalized levels, as well as suggestions for how to be actively anti-racist.
An Equity Screen for Content Creators
This article offers a list of screening questions to help those creating blogs, articles, podcasts, tweets, videos, etc. be more thoughtful about the lens they are using to look at the world and the issues being addressed.
Anti-Racism Resource Collection
The Communications Network
Article/Blog, Guide/Tool, Research/Report, Sample/Template
A crowdsourced collection of anti-racism statements, resources, tools, and guidance.
Awake to Woke to Work: Building a Race Equity Culture
While issue-specific dynamics play an important role in driving social impact (e.g., public policy around affordable housing or the elimination of food deserts to create access to nutritious foods), the thread of structural racism runs through almost every issue faced by the U.S. social sector. This publication serves as a reference for nonprofits and other organizations to build and expand organizational capacity to advance race equity. The report outlines the need for building a Race Equity Culture in social sector organizations, and introduces resources and strategies to help organizational leaders move from commitment to action.
Beyond Diversity: A Roadmap for Building an Inclusive Organization
This study examines readiness, recruitment, and retention practices based on 85 in-depth interviews and surveys with CEOs, COOs and HR Directors of major U.S.-based environmental NGOs and foundations to
Beyond the Board Statement: How Can Boards Join the Movement for Racial Justice?
In the wake of the uprisings against police violence and as communities and organizations grapple with a long history of race-based disparities, nonprofit and philanthropic boards are actively discussing whether to make a statement at all, and if so, what it should contain. What is the nonprofit board of directors’ responsibility and opportunity for leadership around racial justice? Beyond the board statement, what can boards do to ensure that the organizations they govern are living their values?

In these recorded webinars, nationally recognized governance, strategy, and equity consultants have in-depth conversation about how boards of directors can and should join the movement for racial justice.
Building an Equity Lens into Nonprofit Finance
One place to look for tangible evidence of any individual’s or group’s priorities and values is to look at where they spend their money. This article offers nonprofits--and their stakeholders--suggestions on how an equity lens can be applied to many aspects of nonprofit finance and budgeting.
Building Maine’s Economy: How Maine Can Embrace Immigrants and Strengthen the Workforce
This report makes the case for how Maine can meet the rapidly growing demand for labor in the state by tapping into and empowering Maine's immigrant communities.
Building Racial Resiliency
Craig White Consulting
This handout describes "racial resiliency" as the ability for people who carry a racially privileged identity to recognize, talk about, and respond to racism, and describes characteristics of resiliency that people--especially White people--can strive to build to be effective partners and participants racial justice work.
Case Study: Demos’ Racial Equity Transformation: Key Components, Process & Lessons
Article/Blog, Research/Report
This report shares an example of how one organization has been working to operationalize their values and commitments around racial equity and inclusion across every aspect of their operational and organizational life, from hiring and recruitment to daily management and more.
Color blind or color brave?
The subject of race can be very touchy. As finance executive Mellody Hobson says, it's a "conversational third rail." But, she says, that's exactly why we need to start talking about it. In this engaging, persuasive talk, Hobson makes the case that speaking openly about race — and particularly about diversity in hiring -- makes for better businesses and a better society.
Communicating directly about racism, discrimination, and xenophobia
Your audiences may be expecting your organization to weigh-in on matters of racism, discrimination, and xenophobia. Many nonprofits are influencing the way diversity, inclusion, and rights are understood and negotiated. Should you be one of them? This piece offers four suggestions to help your organization communicate where it stands.
Community-Centric Fundraising
Article/Blog, Guide/Tool, Research/Report, Video/Tutorial
Community-Centric Fundraising is a movement to evolve how fundraising is done in the nonprofit sector. Its goal is to support fundraisers and other nonprofit professionals to re-examine every fundraising philosophy and practice they have been taught, engage in vigorous ongoing conversations, and explore doing fundraising in ways that reduce harm and further social justice.
Creating a Language Guide for Your Communications
Article/Blog, Sample/Template
Is your nonprofit working on how it can be more inclusive? At your nonprofit, it is important to make your participants and clients feel welcome. One of the simplest ways to do this is in the words you say and use in your content, and how you address your community. Language guides can be a helpful tool to clarify your approach and train your team. This article provides suggestions and sample language guides.
Crises as a Catalyst: A Call for Race Equity & Inclusive Leadership
A reflective tool and guide for individuals and organizations to advance race equity and inclusive leadership during crises
Defining Your Audience
To effectively communicate, it helps to understand as much as possible about who you are talking to - what they care about, where they go for information, etc. The following resources can help your organization define your audiences so you can better craft and target your communications.
Dismantling Racism Works Web Workbook
​​This website is a web-based version of a workbook designed originally to support the Dismantling Racism workshop offered by Dismantling Racism Works, a training collaborative that is not offering workshops or consulting support at this time. The workshop was one step in a longer process developed initially by Kenneth Jones and Tema Okun over three decades ago, building on the work of many others.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Work: Eight Questions for Building Readiness and Steering Clear of Pitfalls
Diversity, equity, and inclusion work can transform organizations and help them do their work more effectively. This work can be most successful when people are fully invested and have a good idea what is involved. Without this, organizations sometimes set themselves up for failure and bring consultants in with unrealistic expectations. If you are thinking of launching into work around diversity, equity, and inclusion, this post may help you think about how to set yourself up for success.
Equity Glossary
A common language on issues relating to equity is nonexistent. Lack of a common understanding of words in any discussion of equity, diversity and inclusion can easily cause misunderstanding and confusion, and lead to controversy and hostility. The following resources are tools for informing your own shared language for racial equity work.
Equity Values in Action: Learnings from a Lab
What else might be possible if we are bolder and more intentional about aligning our organizations with our equity values? 

This was a question that ten folks working in domestic violence organizations in California came together to consider in the spring of 2017. They took a step back from the very real sense of urgency in domestic violence work to dig into what it might look like on a practical level to intentionally build organizational policies and practices with equity at the root. Through their time together, they created 11 principles for rooting organizations in equity values.
Guardrails for Relationships Tilted by Power: How to Keep Everyone on the Road
Workplace norms or ground rules can be an important practice for encouraging candid, respectful communication, collaboration and exchange of ideas. This article explores the potential and pitfalls of ground rules that create safe space at the expense of healthy conflict and learning and offers suggestions for ground rules that account for teams and environments with inequitable power dynamics.
Hiring an Equity Consultant or Trainer
These resources provide a list of names and contact information for Maine EDI consultants + trainers, as well as guidance on questions related to the often overwhelming process of hiring support for an equity journey, including the following: What are the components of race equity work (or, what are the project types), and how do you develop a RFP for them? How/where do you find a consultant? How can we be realistic about goals? What budget should we expect to invest? etc.
How to Begin Equity Work in Your Organization with Little or No Money
Article/Blog, Guide/Tool, Video/Tutorial
Staff who are not in leadership positions sometimes ask how they can initiate discussions about racial equity. Sometimes, organization’s leaders say they want to but don’t have any funds. You don’t have to be the boss or spend a lot of money to illustrate your commitment to beginning this important work. There are many free or low cost resources out there. This resource offers suggestions.
How to make your communications team a catalyst for diversity, equity, and inclusion
Tina Chong, Vice President of Communications at City Year, and Colleen Flynn, former Senior Director of External Affairs at City Year Boston and now Marketing Manager at Aspen Leadership Group, share their experience in advancing DEI and how other communications teams can get started.
How to Speak Up If You See Bias at Work
"It takes courage to be the one, perhaps the only one, who calls out a behavior as unhelpful to a productive work environment, but failure to acknowledge and address bias or offensive behavior validates the conduct and may create an impression that the behavior is acceptable, and even to be expected, in the workplace. Moreover, normalizing offensive conduct in this subtle manner tends to have a chilling effect on other potential dissenters, and communicates to those who are offended, regardless of whether they are targets of the behavior, that their perspectives and voices are not valued." This article provides useful tips for handling this challenging situation.
Ideas to Action Field Guide
The Field Guide shares adult learning tools that can help teams create successful learning and transformation projects.
Implicit Bias
Article/Blog, Video/Tutorial
Also known as unconscious or hidden bias, implicit biases are negative associations that people unknowingly hold. They are expressed automatically, without conscious awareness. Many studies have indicated that implicit biases affect individuals’ attitudes and actions, thus creating real-world implications, even though individuals may not even be aware that those biases exist within themselves. Notably, implicit biases have been shown to trump individuals’ stated commitments to equality and fairness, thereby producing behavior that diverges from the explicit attitudes that many people profess” (Racial Equity Tools).
Inclusive and Equitable Research Practices
Whose voices do nonprofits tend to seek out in the audience research they conduct? On the flip side, whose voices are absent? Whose views are being centered in decision-making, and whose views don’t count? The following resources can help you design an more inclusive, less biased research process.
Intercultural and Cross-Cultural Assessments
The following tools can help teams map their personal and organizational awareness, understanding and integration of attitudes and behaviors that foster inclusion and equity across cultures. Several of these tools are fee-based and MANP does not endorse a particular product.
Is Your Company Actually Fighting Racism, or Just Talking About It?
This article offers suggestions for how organizations can ensure their statements and commitments regarding race equity are connected with their actions.
Land Acknowledgements
Article/Blog, Guide/Tool, Podcast
The following resources offer explanations of the significance of the practice of land acknowledgments, practical guidance, and recommendations for next steps.
LGBTQ+ Training
The following Maine organizations offer professional development and resources on LGBTQ+ issues and ally-ship.
Nonprofit Diversity Efforts: Current Practices and the Role of Foundations
Based on survey responses of 205 leaders of nonprofit organizations with annual expenses between $100,000 and $100 million, this report provides a collection of data on topics such as how diversity relates to the work of nonprofits and what demographic information nonprofits and funders alike are collecting — and how that information is used. The data in this report can inform foundation leaders and staff as they consider how they can most helpfully engage with their grantees on the topic of diversity.
Practical Guide to How Nonprofits Can Create Equity in Organizations and Community
Nikko Viquiera of Race Forward in Blue Avocado
Recommendations for organizations that have made a commitment to racial justice and now want to go through Justice, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (JDEI) work and processes as a step toward achieving racial equity.
Practical Ideas for Improving Equity and Inclusion at Nonprofits
The journey toward greater diversity, equity, and inclusion has no fixed endpoint, but Stanford Social Innovation Review suggests a few places to start.
Race and Identity
"Although race has no genetic or scientific basis, the concept of race is important and consequential. Societies use race to establish and justify systems of power, privilege, disenfranchisement, and oppression."
Race to Lead
Building Movement Project conducted the first Race to Lead survey in 2016. Over 4,300 respondents answered questions about their current nonprofit job, interest in leading a nonprofit, training/supports, and views on race and the nonprofit sector. The “Race to Lead” report series explores the results of this survey and identifies that efforts to support, train, inspire and mold aspiring leaders of color are important, they are not enough to move the dial towards more diverse leadership.
Racial Equity Transformation: Key Components, Process & Lessons
It is one thing to advocate for equity and inclusion; it is another to turn the lens inward and commit oneself to live those values at the level of day-to-day practice. The Racial Equity Transformation at Dēmos, spearheaded by the authors of this report, involved more than appeals to “diversity” or “inclusion” and involved a thorough and deep shift in organizational practices, norms, culture, and composition. Their commitment to racial equity has unlocked new forms of collaboration, creativity, innovation, and impact in their outward-facing work. This publication is an effort to share their experiences up to this point, in the hopes that others in the field can benefit from lessons learned.
Restructure Your Organization to Actually Advance Racial Justice
Harvard Business Review
This article suggests three things that organizations committed to racial equity — not only in the world around them, but also within their own workforces — should do.
Talking About Disparities: The Effect of Frame Choices on Support for Race-Based Policies
This research examines the effects of disparities-explicit and disparities-neutral frames on support for policies that seek to redress differential outcomes. In short, the question posed by this research is, “Does talking about disparities actually get advocates what they want?” The scope of this Message Brief is to provide advocates and experts interested in garnering support for policies that would prevent or remediate disparities with a communications roadmap of how best to get there.
The Groundwater Approach: Building a Practical Understanding of Structural Racism
Racial Equity Institute
This paper was developed to be used as a tool to deepen both individual understanding of the need for systemic change,  as well as a tool for facilitated group learning and development.
The Nonprofit Sector as White Space
This article advocates that it is critical for the nonprofit sector, as it grapples with issues of racial inequity, to look at underlying explicit and implicit narratives of "white space" and "black space."
The Role of Senior Leaders in Building a Race Equity Culture
To build an organizational culture that embraces racial equity, senior leaders need to set the tone and drive  progress of the work. races racial equity, senior leaders need to set the tone and drive  progress of the work.
The Spectrum of Community Engagement to Ownership
Thriving, diverse, equitable communities are possible through deep participation, particularly by communities commonly excluded from democratic voice & power. Leaders across multiple sectors, such as community-based organizations, local governments, philanthropic partners, and facilitative leaders trusted by communities, can use this spectrum to assess and revolutionize community engagement efforts to advance community-driven solutions.
Voices from the Field: 6 Leadership Imperatives for Philanthropy, Centered on Racial Equity
This article highlights six leadership imperatives (and guidance for navigating them) for leaders who want to lead in ways that center racial equity and justice.
Website Accessibility
The following resources will help you learn about how you can make your website friendlier to all users, including those who are differently abled.
What Does Racial Equity Mean in the Nation’s Whitest State?
As stated in this opinion piece, "It's no secret that Maine, and northern New England more broadly, is among the whitest places in the United States. Maine is 95 percent white, compared with 61 percent of the country as a whole. Unfortunately, this fact is used by many as a rationale for not addressing race in our communities, our systems and our work."
What is Privilege?
The following resources can help organizations explore what privilege (or lack thereof) looks and feels like.
What is Systemic Racism?
This video series addresses various issues such as access to health care, housing discrimination, and the criminal justice system. Each clip is short and direct, and is a good source for basic information and statistics surrounding systemic racism.
Writing with an antiracist lens
Antiracism is the act of advancing antiracist policies and ideas that lead to racial equity in society and writing can be a small piece of a broader antiracist practice. Whether or not the content of your piece is explicitly about race or racism, you can practice bringing an anitracist lens to your writing.
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