I.D.E.A. Initiative – Application & Guidelines

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I.D.E.A. Initiative – Application & Guidelines

Introducing the I.D.E.A. Initiative – Exclusively for DCNP Members

The application deadline has passed – this application is currently closed.


The DeKalb County Nonprofit Partnership (DCNP) is pleased to offer the I.D.E.A. Initiative (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Action). This initiative is made possible by an anonymous donation to the DeKalb County Community Foundation and is available to the participating organizations at no financial cost. It is a progressively more intensive experience to accommodate a variety of organizations, including:

  1. From Awareness to Action Webinar
    • This training develops a definitional understanding of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) terminology, explores the importance of DEI in the nonprofit context, discusses the importance of inclusion for all (e.g., clients, staff, volunteers, board), and touches on the importance of inclusive policies and procedures. Learn more and register here.
  2. I.D.E.A. Initiative Pilot Opportunity
    • Through a competitive application process, up to four (4) organizations will be selected by an ad hoc committee to participate in this immersive opportunity, which includes three parts: Kickoff Roundtable & Project Identification, Policy/Procedure Review & Action Steps, and Reflection Roundtable & Wrap-Up.

I.D.E.A. Initiative Pilot Opportunity Details

Kickoff Roundtable & Project Identification: After organizations are selected to participate, DCNP will convene the organizations and the consultant for a virtual roundtable discussion. The purpose of this discussion is to build relationships, expand developmental knowledge on the topic, and discuss which policy/procedure each organization wants to focus on during the pilot. After the roundtable, organizations will share the identified policy/procedure with the consultant.  

Policy/Procedure Review & Action Steps: The consultant will perform a comprehensive review of the identified policy/procedure for each organization. Written observations and recommendations for improvement (through a DEI lens) will be developed by the consultant and shared with each organization.

Reflection Roundtable & Wrap-Up: Approximately four months after receiving the recommendations, DCNP will convene the consultant and organizations again to reflect and discuss what specifically has been done to move the recommendations from policy to action.

Applying for the I.D.E.A. Initiative

Prior to applying, all applicants should review the I.D.E.A. Initiative Details & Guidelines. Applications are submitted electronically using the link below. For questions, please contact DCNP Director Ben Bingle at ben@dekalbccf.org or by voicemail at 815-748-5383.

It is the policy of the DeKalb County Community Foundation to operate without regard to race, creed, color, sex, religion, marital status, age, national origin, ancestry, political affiliation, sexual orientation, disability, or veteran status.

Apply/Login for I.D.E.A. Initiative                              I.D.E.A. Details and Guidelines                             Register for Webinar


DCNP has contracted with Delia Coleman, Deputy Director of Equal Rights Advocates (San Francisco), to serve as consultant for the I.D.E.A. Initiative. Delia has expertise in nonprofit public policy, social impact best practices, strategic communications, values-based storytelling, and policy communications. She has served the nonprofit sector for over 14 years as an advocate, lobbyist, and strategic communications professional. A skilled policy advocate, speechwriter, and policy communicator, Delia strives to make justice accessible and actionable.

Delia previously worked at Forefront (Chicago) where she connected with DCNP in multiple ways—even serving as keynote speaker at DCNP’s Nonprofit Day. Her expertise in moving policy to action along with her familiarity of DCNP and DeKalb County help position her to lead each aspect of the I.D.E.A. Initiative with support from DCNP.


DCNP is grateful to the generosity of an anonymous donor whose gift made this opportunity possible. In addition, the input, feedback, in-depth review, critical analysis, and collaboration of many partners went into the design of the I.D.E.A. Initiative. Thank you to the following collaborators who contributed to its development:

  • Deanna Cada, Executive Director – DeKalb County Community Mental Health Board & Vice-Chair – DCNP Steering Committee
  • Micki Chulick, President – DeKalb County Community Foundation & Member – DCNP Steering Committee
  • Delia Coleman, Deputy Director – Equal Rights Advocates
  • Lesa Eames, Promise Grant Committee Member – DeKalb County Community Foundation
  • Cheronda Everett, Nonprofit Consultant
  • LaVerne Matthews, Past Executive Director – Pay It Forward House
  • Tiffany McQueen Lewis, Grants Director – DeKalb County Community Foundation
  • Joe Mitchell, Senior Pastor – New Hope Missionary Baptist Church & Vice-President – DeKalb County Community Foundation
  • Jesus Romero, Owner – Taxco Restaurant & Board Member – DeKalb County Community Foundation
  • Lucy Sosa, Evolution Counseling
  • Dan Templin, Executive Director – DeKalb County Community Foundation
  • Ellingsworth Webb, Property Manager – Eden’s Garden Apartments & Treasurer – DeKalb County Community Gardens
  • DCNP Program Committee
  • DCNP Steering Committee

“Americans have long been trained to see the deficiencies of people rather than policy…There is no such thing as a nonracist or race-neutral policy. Every policy in every institution in every community in every nation is producing or sustaining either racial inequity or equity between racial groups.”
― Ibram X. Kendi, How to Be an Antiracist

Apply today for this opportunity for evaluation, dialogue, reflection, and ultimately, policy/procedure improvement in your organization!

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