THREE BEST HOPES
BBBSEMO Staff of Color recommendations for advancing our agency’s
anti-bias anti-racist (ABAR) practices, policies, and procedures
This document details the recommendations prepared and presented by BBBSEMO Staff of Color with BBBSEMO’s full Leadership Team on August 7, 2020. Three Best Hopes was officially added to the agency’s anchor documents, with approval of BBBSEMO’s Board of Directors, on August 26, 2020. The following reflects the March 2021 version of Three Best Hopes.
Best Hope 1: Reimagining Service and Support
- Implement Group and Teammate mentoring for volunteers of color (Black males in particular)
- Implement a Parent and Youth Advisory Council to co-create K-12 programming responsive to developing youth
- Explicitly expand the definition of child safety to include racism, homophobia, bias, etc.; and create corresponding policy around protecting and valuing the personal and cultural identity of Parents and Littles
- Create engaging, accessible content to provide Bigs with useful and culturally relevant tools that support match relationships
- Cultivate intentional partnerships with local, regional, and national entities/projects to deepen, broaden, and increase our visibility and relevance
Best Hope 2: Implementing Diversity Strategies
- Create a BBBSEMO Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Statement: a living document, updated regularly and as-needed, for use and accountability in our day-to-day work
- Hire two (2) full-time Black staff: A Black Volunteer Interviewer and a Black male Volunteer Recruitment Manager. Potential Black and other volunteers of color need to be reflected, start to finish, in their BBBSEMO journey Volunteer Recruitment through Big Futures)
- Prioritize 3-5% annual growth in and retention of staff of color (entry-level through managerial positions)
- Create a subcommittee of the CEO Council expressly committed to advancement and accountability around the agency’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) efforts
Best Hope 3: Fortifying Staff
Create and fill:
- A full-time, internal Human Resources and Talent Director position: an in-house, non-contract staff member must understand Diversity; Equity; and Inclusion as three separate, multi-level goals in order to:
- ensure continuous, up-to-date, mandatory training & education around DEI for Board, Staff, and Volunteers; and
- develop a talent acquisition & cultivation plan to attract, retain, and promote staff of color
- Youth & Family Advocate: a full-time staff member dedicated to amplifying and incorporating Parent, Youth, and Alumni voice. Created expressly for families and young people at every stage of relationship with BBBSEMO, this position sets up a consistent channel for communication (ideas, concerns, etc.); and provides insights into how the agency can serve youth and families – and, as a natural result, volunteers and other individual/organizational partners – best
We, as Staff of Color, make these recommendations for structural change, not personnel adjustments. We urge you not to lose sight of this distinction. It is absolutely vital to effecting practices, policies, and procedures that stay with BBBSEMO when/if individuals leave the organization, whatever the circumstances.
We, as Staff of Color, look forward to seeing our Leadership Team and Board take up the Best Hopes described above. We do so because we believe in the same mission you do.
We Staff of Color are ready to move unflinchingly, together with you, against the racism, bigotry, and injustice that hurts us all -- but inflicts deepest harm on the young people we’ve promised to serve.