A Commitment to Racial Equity

Childhaven is dedicated to creating programs and policies that are informed by and prioritized in response to the experiences, perspectives and needs of children and families of color. Many different individuals and communities face multiple levels of systemic inequity. We are strategically choosing as an organization to look at all forms of oppression through a racial equity lens to ensure that our program does not leave anyone behind.

To fully commit to racial equity as an organization, we formed a Racial Equity Team in January 2018 comprised of 20 dedicated staff members. The team is cross-functional and includes direct service staff, administrators, fundraisers, and members of executive leadership. From classroom materials to program development, the Childhaven Racial Equity Team is always evaluating and recommending ways to improve our services with regards to dismantling racism and other inequities.

The Racial Equity Team’s Mission, Vision, Values, and Principles are:

Mission

Childhaven is committed to racial equity and social justice by fostering inclusiveness, valuing diversity and racial representation, facilitating healing, and promoting avenues to equitable systems by addressing disparities in the workplace, healthcare and education. We do this with respect, self-awareness, authentic engagement, and a willingness to learn from one another and our communities.

We challenge ourselves and support each other to make a collective impact with tools and strategies that improve access to opportunity and well-being for all children and families and our employees.

Vision

  • Childhaven commits itself to involving staff, community members, children & families as partners in the ongoing process of developing and implementing racial equity work.
  • We acknowledge and honor the fundamental value and dignity of all individuals by embracing cultural differences and remaining open to new experiences.
  • We envision a vibrant organization and community in which people of all races create, share, and enjoy resources and relationships equitably.

Values

  • We recognize that the communities Childhaven serves are disproportionately impacted by racism and other social injustices.
  • We are committed to creating an environment that is equitable, transparent, and inclusive.
  • We value self-reflection, growth, and collaboration from staff, families we serve, and leaders in the community.
  • We value deep listening, understanding, and active participation to keep the conversation going and to dismantle barriers to social and racial justice.

Principles

  • Recognizing power: Analyzing systematic racism at Childhaven (being mindful of representation) understanding privileges that you did not earn, realizing there are barriers people do not deserve.
  • Cultural humility: Being aware of and open-minded about other cultures, values, belief systems and eliminating ethnocentric ideologies.
  • Accountability: Be responsible to our clients, co-workers, selves and community for accurately reflecting our racial equity values, through acknowledging privilege and guilt, having courage and evolving awareness.

To learn more about why leading with race helps us provide the best services to every member of our community, check out this one-pager from the City of Seattle’s Race and Social Justice Initiative.

If you’d like to learn more, please contact the Childhaven Racial Equity Team at ret@childhaven.org.