Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Our commitment to building a better us.

The YMCA of Western North Carolina welcomes all. We are honored to be part of the national Y-USA Global Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Network. This means: 

  • Recognizing that being a diverse and inclusive organization is foundational
  • Believing we all benefit from the unique talents of our diverse staff
  • Offering staff professional development and training programs that build key competencies in DEI

The Y is made up of people of all ages, from all walks of life, working side by side to strengthen communities. Together, we strive to ensure that everyone, regardless of ability, age, cultural background, ethnicity, faith, gender, gender expression, gender identity, ideology, income, national origin, race, or sexual orientation has the opportunity to reach their full potential with dignity.

Social responsibility in our strategic plan

A major focus of our 2022-2025 Strategic Plan is to make significant progress toward our global diversity, equity, and inclusion goals. We are being intentional about improving equity throughout our organization and the region, while striving to become an anti-racist, multicultural organization. 

We aim to:

  • Advance progress in staff hiring and board representation to more closely reflect varying perspectives across multiple dimensions of diversity
  • Expand, encourage, and support employee resource groups (ERGs) to create positive communication channels and enhance feelings of inclusion within the Y
  • Develop and execute a strategy to engage more deeply with organizations that serve diverse segments of the community
  • Engage in community-wide efforts focused on equity issues and bolster communications to non-English speaking populations.

Employee resource groups

Employee resource groups (ERGs) are staff-led networks that promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace. They help us foster an inclusive work environment where staff can learn, advocate, and engage in a supportive space.  

Our ERGs offer colleagues from all backgrounds and experiences opportunities to:

  • Connect and build relationships
  • Mentor one another
  • Share knowledge and experiences
  • Participate in personal and professional development 
  • Enhance leadership skills
  • Strengthen cultural competency 
  • Inform organizational strategies

The YMCA of Western North Carolina has ERGs for Black/African-American, Hispanic/Latino/Latinx, and LGBTQ+ staff.