GRDC News - April 2004

Welcome New Members
The GRDC is pleased to welcome these new members.

Catholic Family CenterCatholic Family Center (CFC) is Rochester's largest family service provider; helping nearly 63,000 people each year achieve independence with dignity. The comprehensive agency houses nine major service areas for people of all ages, races, religions and socioeconomic circumstances. In all, CFC has 60 programs within its nine service departments, available to the community at 17 locations throughout Monroe and Wayne Counties.

CFC recognizes that having a job which pays a living wage is important to its clients.It offers several important programs which transcend all service areas, including: Work First (a welfare-to-work employment program), the Employment Services Program and the Ways to Work Family Loan Program which provides, low-interest loans to the working poor for anything that can help maintain, or lead to, employment.

Brande C. Hunt, MSW, Director of Cultural Competence & Training, will represent Catholic Family Center on the Greater Rochester Diversity Council.

You can reach Brande at Catholic Family Center, 87 North Clinton Avenue, Rochester, New York 14604, (585) 262-7014, Please visit the organization's website at

Idea ConnectionsIdea Connections Consulting Group serves business, civic, and educational organizations by partnering with them to establish systems and processes that bring about and sustain innovation. This is accomplished through a variety of means including: assessment of organizational culture and implementing systemic change strategies, inclusion programs such as Mosaic Partnerships, organizational architecture, leadership development and teambuilding.

For many years now Idea Connections has been following the efforts of organizations (private and public) as they have been proactively addressing the very important issue of diversity and human cultural connections within their unique environments.

Current trends in domestic demographics, as well as the inevitable shift to a global economy, clearly indicate that the ability to leverage cultural differences will be a key critical success factor relating to the long-term growth and success of any business, organization and community.

Biracial Partnerships for Community Progress
Idea ConnectionsIn 2001, Mayor William A. Johnson initiated Biracial Partnerships for Community Progress in order to break down racial misunderstandings in the Rochester community. Under the leadership of the Mayor's Commission on Race and Ethnicity, Idea Connections implemented the program. In its inception, the Biracial Partnerships for Community Progress program focused on African American, Hispanic and Caucasian partnerships among 160 regional leaders. In its second phase the program partnered Muslim and non-Muslim community members. Currently, phase three continues the roll out throughout the general population. The process is designed to expand to tens of thousands of people in every stratum and sector of the Rochester region in the years to follow.

Mosaic Partnerships
Catholic Family CenterMosaic Partnerships was created to carry the success and key learnings of Rochester's Biracial Partnerships to other communities, organizations and businesses throughout the country. It was developed around the simple idea that friendship and fellowship-when supported by broader economic, political and social institutions-have transformational powers within society. Based on Idea Connections' years of experience in understanding how people think and feel-and the effect this has on human behavior-the program's purpose is to create environments that serve as catalysts for sub-cultures of all types to appreciate, accept and leverage human differences.

The entire program is designed to bring people together in pairs-people who might otherwise never have met-and encourage them to interact at increasingly deeper, more intimate levels. The goal is to establish trust and unity, the prerequisites of any lasting and effective change. The Mosaic Partnerships process has proven effective in multiple areas, including: mergers and acquisitions, leadership development, cross-cultural training, as well as race relations.

Representing Idea Connections on the Greater Rochester Diversity Council are Robert B. Rosenfeld, President and Chief Executive Officer, 585-442-4110 X3121 and Richard D. Agent, Senior Consultant, 585-442-4110 X3144, 693 East Avenue, Rochester, NY 14607. Fax: 585-442-8823.

For additional information see:




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