The Board of Directors of Impact Austin strongly believes in the fundamental principles of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEIB) and fully endorses the following definitions. These definitions are designed to guide Impact Austin’s operational and intentional goals around these key focus areas. DEIB work should not live only in one committee; instead DEIB values and principles are the foundation for all Impact Austin policies and operations both because they aim toward justice and fairness and because they make us a stronger organization. Lastly, DEIB work is never done or fully achieved; we recognize it as an ongoing process and the most important aspect of this work is putting it into action. DEIB Definitions Diversity includes all the ways in which people differ, both visibly and invisibly to others. It encompasses the varied characteristics that make one individual or group unique. We embrace a broad definition of diversity that includes, but is not limited to, race, ethnicity, age, national origin, religion, ability, sexual orientation, gender identity, socioeconomic status, education, marital status, language, physical appearance, and lived experiences, as well as the intersectionality among these. Equity is the fair treatment, access, opportunity, and advancement for all people. Equity is not synonymous with equality. Equity is distribution of resources based on what each person needs in order to adequately level the playing field. Equity is an ongoing process, requiring us to identify and overcome intentional and unintentional barriers arising from bias or systemic racism. Inclusion is the act of creating actively anti-racist, safe environments in which any individual or group can feel welcomed, respected, supported, heard, and valued to fully participate in all aspects of the organization and show up as their authentic selves. An inclusive and welcoming climate embraces differences and offers respect in words and actions. It's important to note that while an inclusive group is by definition diverse, a diverse group isn't always inclusive. Being inclusive includes acknowledging and identifying unconscious/implicit bias. Belonging is when an individual feels accepted and included; when they can fully engage, safely share their ideas, and trust they will be valued. We are on a journey to intentionally create a sense of belonging for all our members, so that they feel our programs, people, partners, and more are relevant and applicable to them. By adopting a shared understanding of DEIB for Impact Austin, the intent of the Board is to fully embrace these concepts in all aspects of the work we perform to achieve the strategic goals of Impact Austin. We will embrace these DEIB concepts in our interactions with our membership, our community partners, the nonprofit organizations we serve as well as any other community members we interact with to achieve our mission. Ensuring our DEIB concepts are embedded in all that we do will serve as inspiration for our current members and potential members and ultimately will help us continue to make a significant and meaningful impact in our grantmaking to the nonprofit community in the Central Texas area.
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