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Culture of Inclusion

At Heartland Family Service, we are committed to building a culture that values and celebrates diversity in addition to creating a Trauma Informed Care environment. We believe this practice will allow us to recruit and retain employees that bring various experiences and uniqueness to our workplace and to better serve our clients and communities.

In an effort to carry out these commitments, our President and CEO John Jeanetta has woven diversity and inclusion into the strategic planning and operations of Heartland Family Service.

“Valuing diversity, in all of its forms and complexities, is a fundamental component of our ability to help the people we serve and strengthen our community. Understanding many of our clients have experienced some level of trauma, first as children and then again as adults, Heartland Family Service can only be successful if we fully integrate a trauma-informed culture into our daily work.  This means our clients and our staff must first and foremost feel safe. They must trust us. And we must work hard to gain their trust. As agents of change, we must also carefully lift up and empower one another to achieve our goals. And in order to do any of this important work, we must first see and cherish all that is unique and special about each person who works at this agency and who comes here for lifesaving help.”

– John Jeanetta, President & CEO

Heart Works Council

The Heart Works Council is committed to ensuring our agency is welcoming and safe for all staff members and clients by developing and reinforcing our capacity to understand, value, and reflect differences in all forms.

Our Values of Trauma Informed Care

At Heartland Family Service, we strive to help our clients and staff feel safe, welcomed, and cared for in all of the programs and services. We do this by practicing these values of Trauma Informed Care:

Our “Good Works” are only possible in an open culture, where everyone is authentic, emotionally self-regulated, valued, and supported. The agency’s goal is for everyone to feel secure while sharing concerns, vulnerabilities, and emotions with others. We place a strong emphasis on ensuring employees and clients feel physically and emotionally safe by providing clean and welcoming buildings, offering positive and proactive services, fostering respectful environments, and modeling an inclusive and engaging workforce. Employees work to ensure all clients, coworkers, volunteers, and guests feel physically and emotionally safe.
We focus on client and employee strengths while providing skill-building to develop these strengths even more. Clients and employees are given the freedom and support, within the constraints of individual capabilities, regulatory limitations, funding requirements, best practice models, etc., needed to grow and develop while being held accountable for achieving agreed-upon goals. Successes and failures will be mined for learning in order to propel continued growth.
We maximize teamwork and the sharing of power between client and employee while working together to solve problems. Employees learn from challenges and mistakes and stay focused on their strengths to ensure consistent, high-quality outcomes. In order to create a positive, well-balanced work environment, we regularly solicit feedback from employees and implement changes they feel are important. Employees agree to prioritize the goals of the agency first, the goals of their program second, and the goals of their position third.
We understand trauma can involve the abuse of power. In order to provide an emotionally and physically safe place to heal and work, we share power whenever possible to increase engagement. We understand motivation comes from within and creating and keeping change is only made possible by the option to choose. We offer options to clients, employees, and external stakeholders giving them the freedom to make choices each individual feels are in their best interests. We always allow for people to change their mind at any time.

We firmly believe that openness, transparency, and honest communication are keys to developing and maintaining trustworthiness. Employees share information to make tasks clear, deliver quality services focused on achieving our intended impact, and as a business, we manage our financial resources efficiently. We agree that it is important to be accountable in maintaining appropriate boundaries and following through consistently.

Equity is a cornerstone for our trauma informed culture. Understanding the trauma impact that marginalized people have endured on a personal, community, and systemic level is a vital component to the trauma-informed framework captured best by the question: “What happened to you?” We recognize these systems of harm impact every aspect of our work. We engage in learning and self-reflection so we can recognize the presence and impact of this specific trauma and offer responsive and understanding care. We explore where inequities are inherent in our internal processes and we change our systems accordingly. We advocate for changes to the external systems we know perpetuate the trauma and social problems that bring clients to Heartland Family Service for care. Internally, we monitor and measure the impact of our approach and make adjustments as needed because we understand that equity is a continuous practice.

Employee Resource Groups

Creating a collaborative and comfortable work environment that educates and respects all differences is a key component in creating a diverse and inclusive culture at Heartland Family Service. Our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) bring together employees from different walks of life to connect on various levels professionally and personally.

Each of our ERGs receives support through sponsorship from a senior-level employee to help guide and develop the vision and actions of that group.

Elevate Employee Resource GroupElevate creates opportunities for all HFS employees to engage in professional development including mentoring and coaching relationships, learning opportunities, and thoughtful collaboration. 

Family 1st Employee Resource GroupFamily 1st is committed to advocating for employees in regards to life and family planning by creating a safe and productive work environment as well as helping staff to achieve work life integration.

LinC Employee Resource GroupThe purpose of LinC (Leaders in Culture) is to provide education, awareness, & support for all cultures in the workplace and community.


Heartfulness Employee Resource Group Heartfulness is comprised of Heartland Family Service employees practicing and teaching mindfulness to their peers and clients, through events and experiences, with an emphasis on mindful self-compassion.

PRISM Employee Resource GroupPrism supports the LGBTQ* community of employees and clients within Heartland Family Service through educational events and trainings, policy and procedure advocacy, and working with programs to improve the experience and services provided to LGBTQ* clients.

Serve Employee Resource GroupServe recognizes and supports service members, first responders and their families at Heartland Family Service, while bringing awareness and education to our stakeholders and staff.

Wellness Works Employee Resource GroupWellness Works is committed to promoting and empowering Heartland Family Service employees to increase health and well-being through educational opportunities, fun activities, and advocacy.