THRIVE in Hastings

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Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Initiative

Beginning in November of 2016, a group of community leaders and citizens, including representatives from the City and the school district, have been engaged in dialog to understand the state of diversity, equity, and inclusion in Hastings. Periodic discussions presented ever growing and changing statistics, a broadening understanding of diversity, and conversations with a variety of residents to understand personal experiences, concerns, needs, and aspirations for the Hastings community.

Community leaders are now working to expand the conversation and facilitate community-wide learning opportunities in order to embrace cultural differences and commonalities throughout the city. A partnership with the YMCA Equity Innovation Center was been approved for funding and began work in September 2018 on an 18-month journey. 

  • Read the Latest News section for most current updates.
  • Visit the registration page to sign up to receive updates on new learning opportunities, events, and general updates from the Initiative. 


Upcoming Events: (click on event title to see details)

April 16: Virtual THRIVE Thursday
May 21: THRIVE Thursday
June 18: THRIVE Thursday

Latest Updates

Throughout the past year and a half, community members and stakeholders have been working together to analyze the increasing diversity in Hastings and learn about opportunities to improve community support for inclusion and equity. In the past 16 months, this group has hosted 13 events including learning opportunities (Hidden Brain & Unconscious Bias, Bridging Cultural Differences), two community conversations, a Leadership Think Tank, five Equity Labs, and two Train-the-Trainer sessions. In addition, community members have hosted at least five spin-off events including the Hastings Reads author series, the Longer Table event, and the Building Bridges event “Reclaiming Our People and History.” The group has created a one-year snapshot to include additional efforts that have taken place in the community since the proclamation that kicked off the initiative on April 28, 2018.

Through these efforts, three main areas of opportunity specific to Hastings emerged: Increase Cultural Competency, Provide Trust and Safety for All, and Bridging Community. These three themes were heard repeatedly throughout community dialogues and round table discussions. These areas of focus will guide the efforts of this community initiative in the upcoming year.

THRIVE in Hastings

Thrive in Hastings, MNAs the Equity Labs ended and themes started to emerge from the data, a new steering committee was formed to begin the next phase of work. This community partnership includes members from the city, school district, Community Ed, YMCA, Chamber of Commerce, local non-profits and city residents. While conversations around diversity and equity have proven to be challenging at times, one area of agreement is the idea that Hastings aspires to be a premier community where ALL people can live, work, visit, and thrive. A rebranding effort was completed around this concept and the initiative will now be known as THRIVE.

A new phase of community engagement will begin in August with monthly speakers presenting on a variety of topics that will assist in continuing learning and conversations around the three identified areas of opportunity. In addition, the final phase of work with the YMCA Center for Equity will commence with leaders from both the public and private sectors invited to participate in an Equity Leadership Institute training. This in-depth training experience seeks to increase understanding of self-awareness as related to intercultural relationships, promote a positive work culture that supports equity and inclusion, and allow for effective communication among diverse populations. If you are interested in sending a participant from your business or organization to the Equity Leadership Institute, please contact Derrick Jaeger at the Hastings Area YMCA.

Recent Presentations

8/20/19, Powerpoint: Our Changing Demographics

8/20/19, Video: Our Changing Demographics, Jane Vanderpool

9/11/19, Video: Safety & Faith in Intimate Relationships, Dr. Elizabeth Petersen

10/6/19, Video: Sundown Towns Author Visit, Dr. James Loewen

Community and Initiative Information

City and School Board Joint Proclamation April 29, 2018

Hastings City Council Approves Funding for Partnership with YMCA and ISD 200, July 9, 2018

2017 Hastings Community Survey (National Citizen Survey Livability Report)

15-Month Snapshot: What Have We Accomplished?, August 2019