Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion

individuals of all colors join hands in a huddle

Purpose: The purpose of this policy is to communicate United Way’s values for diversity.

As a champion and catalyst for building a strong, healthy community in Hernando County, United Way values racial, ethnic, and cultural diversity. United Way fights for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in our community. 

United Way’s vision and mission reflect our fundamental belief that all people belong, and deserve fairness, justice, and inclusivity. Our strength comes through our diversity and we celebrate the visible and invisible qualities that make each person unique, including race, religion, national origin, ethnicity, age, gender, gender identity and expression, disability, sexual orientation, veteran-status, residency status, socio-economic status, geographical representation, pregnancy, or any other category protected by law.

We know the work of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is unique to every community around the world. Below is United Way Hernando County’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Statement of Principle which outlines our commitment to building sustainable, inclusive, and resilient organizations and communities.


As a champion and catalyst for building a strong, healthy community in Hernando County, United Way values diversity. We believe all people should have an opportunity to make positive impact on society. It is through the collective efforts of diverse individuals in our communities that we create a responsible and vibrant society, one that respects, honors and thrives on the unique attributes of its members.

  • We value the visible and invisible qualities that make you who you are.
  • We welcome the unique perspectives and experiences that individuals bring to advance our mission and progress our fight for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in every community.
  • We believe that each United Way community member, donor, volunteer, advocate, and employee must have equal access to solving community problems.
  • We strive to include diverse, equitable, and inclusive practices at the center of our daily work.
  • We commit to using these practices for the overall health and improvement of our business and our communities.

Through our commitment to diversity, we will strive to be a role model in our community, joining with other organizations to strengthen an effective human service system that reaches out to all people in our community. This pledge allows us to align our culture and business practices to be a beacon of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging for all people.

Inclusion puts the concept and practice of diversity into action by creating an environment of involvement, respect, tolerance and connection—where the richness of ideas, backgrounds, and perspectives are harnessed to create value. We practice Inclusion through our Recruitment of staff and volunteers, Service delivery, Advocacy, Grant making, Governance, Training, and Accommodation. Our commitment to diversity rests on certain Core Values that influence our decision-making, guide our interactions with each other and others, and determine the measure of our success. These Core Values consist of, but are not limited to: Accountability, Diversity, Leadership, Inclusiveness, Volunteerism, Loyalty, and Excellence.


At the core of accountability is reliability, and personal and professional responsibility. We value the ability of our staff, organization, volunteers, and supported Partners, to honor our commitments, to clients and to each other. We provide efficient, cost-effective systems, policies and processes in support of the mission, and to ensure the highest levels of transparency and accountability to the community we serve.


We provide leadership for solving problems facing our communities in Hernando County by mobilizing resources (people, money, talent) for collective action. We are focused, innovative, bold and courageous in our efforts to act on community aspirations for a better life. We practice our leadership by inclusivity, seeking collaboration with diverse individuals, partners, and services.


We foster an environment of trust and respect for all individuals and points of view. We value the rich diversity of our county and strive to ensure that all our actions are inclusive and reflective of our shared aspirations.


We are powered by individuals and groups’ time, treasures, and talents. We are committed to recruiting and connecting volunteers from all sectors to causes they are most passionate about. The Officers, Directors, Committee Members, and outreach volunteers represented by this Corporation shall be selected entirely on a non-discriminatory basis with respect to race, age, sex, religion, national origin, disability.


We take pride in our trusted community partnerships and commitments, staying true to our organizations beliefs. We have unique relationship building designed to support our supporters, creating a culture of understanding, strength, dependence, and trust.


We are focused on achieving the highest standards of organizational excellence. We work to exceed our community’s expectations. We focus our efforts on providing the most cost-effective return on investment of our human and financial resources.


We are responsible stewards of the resources entrusted to us. Our actions are honest and open in every regard. We respect the trust of our community. We practice accountability, transparency, discipline and responsibility.


United Way is made up of many different levels of collective collaboration. We recognize that diverse partners bring expertise, perspective, legitimacy and resources. We pursue multiple strategic sector partnerships and share responsibility and credit, for we can’t do it alone. United Way is powered by partnerships and collaborations.


We identify novel ideas that promise to be catalysts for change and apply them to achieve our bold goals. We are nimble in making course corrections and use continuous feedback to hone our creative strategies, fueling additional opportunities.


We aim to address the root-cause and implement long-term solutions that have the potential to maximize our investments and our impact in the community.


We operate openly and communicate in a clear manner easily understood by the community. We focus on providing clarity for processes such as financials, investments, program services, and decision making guidelines that affect the community we serve.


This means we practice our commitment to diversity by living our values through:

  • Creating a diverse and inclusive workplace: UWHC is committed to building and maintaining an environment that embraces and values differences. UWHC employees, Board Members and volunteers should feel valued and respected, without bias.
  • Serving the needs of a diverse community: UWHC will continue to be a leader in funding promising community programs, services, partnerships, and initiatives that target diverse populations throughout the community.
  • Respecting and including diverse volunteers, donors and advocates: To be relevant and a viable community partner, UWHC representatives model an awareness of, and understanding and respect for, the many forms of difference reflected in the people served by UWHC. We aspire to attract and build a diverse volunteer, donor and advocate base.
  • Holding ourselves accountable and making a difference: We strive to fulfill the letter and spirit of our diversity philosophy, and to illustrate that through our commitment to excellence. To realize the potential of every member of our organization, we work to create a culture that promotes individual accountability. We recognize that holding ourselves accountable to our fundamental principles allows us a better opportunity to make a positive difference through our work. Our values should be demonstrated through our actions and decisions, individually and collectively. We know that part of our organizational and individual legacy to the community we serve is our commitment to this achievable ideal.