We continue to see a trend of immigrants, refugees and Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC)
moving into Greater Minnesota communities. This trend is in part due to the opportunities that are
available because of sustained labor force shortages in Greater Minnesota communities. Communities
can provide a good quality of life by being more intentionally welcoming and inclusive. This is important
so that immigrants, refugees and BIPOC continue living in the communities they move to, helping them
thrive. However, some communities might be unsure about where to start or how to do this work. The
primary objective of this toolkit is to provide ideas and information for small towns to meaningfully
engage with immigrants, refugees, and BIPOC and share what communities can do to be more
welcoming and inclusive.
This toolkit was created based on over a year of work and research by Alyssa Scott, a Public Policy and
Public Health graduate student interested in policies that support marginalized communities and
engaging in community-focused research and evaluation techniques .
This toolkit was developed using a broad approach of working with and learning from multiple
communities rather than working in depth with a single community. It is important to keep this in mind
as you read through the information and recommendations presented in this toolkit. They are
suggestions based on this project’s research, namely objective observations and learning.
The types of community interventions and strategies that promote inclusion and integration of
immigrants have been widely studied. Some examples include studies of the frequent interaction
between established residents and newer populations of immigrants, refugees, and BIPOC; focus on
assets that immigrants bring to the community; reframing issues to counter misconceptions about
immigrants; cultivating social capital among immigrants; building partnerships across community sectors
and government; and encouraging leadership.
Center for Small Towns at University of Minnesota Morris
UMN Extension Small Grant
UMN Extension Central Regional Sustainable Development Partnership
Creating a Welcoming Community: A Toolkit to Support Immigrants, Refugees, and BIPOC.
Retrieved from the University of Minnesota Digital Conservancy,
Content distributed via the University of Minnesota's Digital Conservancy may be subject to additional license and use restrictions applied by the depositor.