Kennebec Valley Regional Diversity & Inclusion for Equitable Economic Development Program

Program

Our program has been developed specifically for Maine. Created after more than 9-months of research in the Kennebec valley, our program is Maine-made and tailored for the Kennebec region informed by over 25 meetings and forums, hundreds of hours of locally focused discussions, multiple surveys and input from city councils, town managers, mayors, educational institutions, business leaders and community members – we’re confident we have a unique program designed for the Kennebec region.
Our program is more than skin-deep, we guide participants through a variety of topics (themes) across the diversity & inclusion landscape in a manner that recognizes the unique geography of Kennebec; gently introducing diversity topics to build awareness by creating safe spaces for participants to ask questions and apply new insights at a self-paced, community-emphasized recognition of diversity beyond skin color. We include discussions and readings that explore the community roles of rural-to-urban partnerships, economic and housing equity, the implicit biases we all have with respect to dfferent religions, immigration status and gender – all while still addressing race, ethnicity, and current events.

Benefits

  • Create Business-Citizen Unity
  • Increase Diversity Awareness
  • Promote Diverse & Equitable Growth
  • Support Community Inclusion

 

Registration

Registration is done through Eventbrite: Registration

Program Outline

Themed Monthly Educational Experience – each month of the year has a diversity theme to help participants become more immersed in a variety of geo-cultural and socio-economic aspects of diversity.

      • Flexible, Self-Paced Pre-reading: A pre-reading is assigned each month that covers terminology, inclusion/equity/diversity, bias and the monthly theme.
      • Practical Application/Homework (PracApp): Based upon the Pre-reading, participants are asked to complete a self-reflection or PracApp to submit. These help our participants not only understand various forms of diversity in their community, home and workplace, but also recognize their own identity as an integral member of the diversity spectrum: inclusion includes their own identity, no matter how they self-identify.
      • Discussion Forum: Instead of passive lectures, discussion forums are held each month for participants who have successfully submitted the PracApp. Discussion forums allow participants from each department (or sector of the community) to share, discuss and learn about diversity in their workplace and neighborhood – and ask questions, share ideas to promote community level growth at the speed of each individual’s readiness.
      • Community Engagement Project(s): Higher level certification program components include CEPs for students to share what they learn with the community. These are often based upon a monthly theme in which participants raise awareness (examples include working with your child’s school to celebrate a spiritual holiday; creating a poster to display in your workplace’s HR offices; delivering a(n) essay to a local club like Rotary, Lions, VFW).
      • Presentation(s): The highest level certification program components require participants to co-lead a Discussion Forum or community event to share the growing community engagement. 

 

Delivery

  • Virtual/Online: 
    • Registration: Eventbrite – 
    • Pre-Discussion/Session Materials: Google Classroom (link provided after registration)
    • Discussion/Session: Zoom (link provided after registration)

Facilitator:
Dr. Mourning-Star is an enthusiastic leading member of the Kennebec Regional D&I Initiative addressing diversity issues from an economic development perspective. As an epidemiologist and statistician with more than a decade of experience analyzing complex health, diversity, economic and human interest information for organizations such as the World Health Organization, the U.S. National Science Foundation’s Education Directorate, the Department of Defense, Kennebec Regional Development Authority and others. Professor Mourning-Star and his team at Results International Research & Consulting is a leader in the providing communities and organizations with data-driven educational interventions to support long-term resilience.