The Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts achieves the Certified Neurodiverse Workplace™ (CNW) designation from the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES). This credential is a testament to the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts’ commitment to creating a more inclusive work environment, and it shows their dedication to enhancing their organization through neurodiversity inclusion. Implementing inclusive practices like staff training, accommodations and updated policies allows organizations to nurture their existing staff and attract potential employees, creating a diverse and accessible workplace while staying ahead in today’s rapidly evolving business landscape.
“We are immensely proud to share with our community our recent certification as a neurodiverse workplace. Embracing neurodiversity is both a step towards more equitable practices and a more inclusive future for the foundation,” says Megan Burkey, president and CEO of the Community Foundation. “This recognition reinforces our commitment to creating a workplace where every individual can contribute their unique talents and experiences, ensuring that the Community Foundation reflects the diversity and potential of our region.”
In today’s competitive business landscape, organizations are recognizing the value of neurodiversity inclusion. The Certified Neurodiverse Workplace™ program by IBCCES helps leaders and teams hire, retain and collaborate effectively with neurodivergent workers (e.g., autism, ADHD, dyslexia and other cognitive differences). It offers evidence-based content, insights from neurodivergent individuals, ongoing support, and renewal requirements for continuous learning and lasting impact.
“Earning our certification as a neurodiverse workplace is one step in our process to work towards a more inclusive workplace,” explains Briana Wales-Thaxton, vice president for people and culture for the Community Foundation. “In addition to the certification training, we also participated in a neurodiversity audit of our organization and received a set of recommendations for policy updates, operational considerations, and training solutions. We are committed to supporting this holistic, long-term process because we believe that building a more equitable and inclusive environment for our staff and volunteers supports us in expanding and supporting that work across the region.”
“We’re thrilled to partner with the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts to help enhance their inclusivity measures within the workplace,” says Myron Pincomb, IBCCES board chairman. “Neurodiversity inclusion in the workplace is an essential part of creating an environment where all employees feel comfortable, welcome, and valued. The Community Foundation is setting an excellent example of best workplace practices, and we hope that other organizations will follow suit.”
To facilitate access to certified locations and professionals, IBCCES created CertifiedAutismCenter.com, a free online resource that lists organizations that have met the Certified Autism Center™ (CAC) or Certified Neurodiverse Workplace™ (CNW) requirements. This platform enables individuals and families to identify inclusive businesses and workplaces that are committed to understanding and supporting neurodivergent individuals.
About Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts
Established in 1991, The Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts works to actively enrich the quality of life for all people across Hampden, Hampshire and Franklin Counties. As a catalyst for positive change, the organization engages partners and leverages resources to address challenges and contribute to the common good. Committed to creating lasting positive change in the communities it serves, The Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts does this by centering five strategic priorities, which include marshaling resources and increasing charitable giving across its region; encouraging diversity, equity, and inclusion practices in workplaces and institutions including its own; supporting a strong start for all children; providing pathways to the completion of post-secondary education and professional training; and supporting a vibrant local arts and creativity ecosystem. For further information, visit http://communityfoundation.org/.
Committed to providing The Global Standard For Training and Certification in The Field of Cognitive Disorders – IBCCES provides a series of certifications that empower professionals to be leaders in their field and improve the outcomes for the individuals they serve. These programs are recognized around the world as the leading benchmark for training and certification in the areas of autism and other cognitive disorders.
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