In 2021, Horizon Group began serving as the staffing partner for Capital Crossroads, Central Iowa’s comprehensive strategic vision plan which coordinates the region’s major funding partners, government, and businesses. Horizon Group’s leadership in this large-scale, multi-sector initiative has catalyzed projects such as the Here We Grow Initiative, which uses data to raise the visibility and momentum for workforce housing in Central Iowa municipalities. In partnership with a futurist and management consulting company, Horizon Group continues to support the next regional vision and action plan undertaken by a broad cross-section of community leaders from the private, public, nonprofit, and social sectors.
Keep Iowa Beautiful is a nonprofit organization committed to enhancing the economic health and cultural vitality of Iowa’s communities.
Horizon Group staff works closely with Keep Iowa Beautiful staff to coordinate programming, market, and promote the organization, manage communications, and provide strategic insight. Since the start of this partnership in 2019, our team has refined the Keep Iowa Beautiful website, implemented a structured, strategic social media plan, and transitioned the newsletter from a quarterly print publication to a monthly online publication. Additionally, we have overseen the coordination of Keep Iowa Beautiful programs and initiatives, including Pick-Up Iowa, Hometown Pride, Paint Iowa Beautiful, the Keep Iowa Beautiful Annual Photography Contest, the annual golf tournament, and more.
In 2021, Horizon Group began as a staff partner for the DSM 4 Equity Collective: over 30 diverse community members with the goal of increasing racial equity in Central Iowa. In partnership with a consultant, Horizon Group surveyed over 200 organizations using an Organizational Equity Practices Assessment (OEPA), analyzed the data, performed a gap analysis, and identified tangible strategies for improvement through the creation of equity playbooks to support employers. Horizon Group, in partnership with United Way of Central Iowa, also led the development of a racial equity data dashboard which centralized data collection efforts in Central Iowa to create accountability and show areas of focus to improve racial equity. This dashboard uses publicly available data to create a baseline to measure progress over time.
The Iowa Association of Rural Health Clinics (IARHC) is a nonprofit organization committed to supporting all rural health clinics in Iowa.
Horizon Group staff work closely with the Iowa Association of Rural Health Clinic’s Board of Directors to promote the organization, manage communications, and provide strategic insight to further the mission and vision of the organization. Horizon Group provides IARHC with project management, program support, and relationship building. These services include board support, grant support, newsletter development, scheduling assistance, and event management. The Horizon Group has led several initiatives including an organizational strategic plan, a website redesign, implemented regular communications on organizational updates, and established a database with up-to-date information for all rural health clinics in Iowa. Additionally, our team has overseen and managed all IARHC events and annual membership drive.
For almost twenty years, Horizon Group has played a pivotal role in spearheading the Iowa Afterschool Alliance on behalf of the Iowa Children’s Museum. Since 2002, the organization has been a reliable partner, overseeing various aspects of the Iowa Afterschool Alliance, including stakeholder engagement, policy development, advocacy, professional development, technical assistance, and strategic planning. Collaborating with school districts, nonprofits, faith-based organizations, and partners involved in before school, after school, and summer programs, Horizon Group has provided enriching experiences for Iowa’s children. Their extensive knowledge in afterschool and summer programming is exemplified through their partnership with the Iowa Department of Education, offering professional development and support to the 21st Century Community Learning Centers network. Additionally, the organization takes pride in its annual conference, bringing together over 150 afterschool professionals to network and embrace emerging youth development best practices. Horizon Group has also ventured into afterschool STEM, forming strong partnerships with esteemed providers like the Blank Park Zoo, The Iowa Children’s Museum, and the Science Center of Iowa. With a mission to empower Iowa’s youth, Horizon Group, through the Iowa Afterschool Alliance, continues to catalyze positive change, inspire innovation, and drive growth in youth development.
In 2020, the Oxford-Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism began a three-year project aimed at investigating the factors that undermine trust in news across differing media environments, focusing on Brazil, India, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The project focused specifically on subgroups whose views about news might differ from the majority perspectives and whose attitudes may be difficult to capture through surveys alone. In 2022-23, Horizon Group led the qualitative research efforts conducting eight focus groups. Horizon Group recruited over 40 diverse participants and facilitated the groups. Four of the focus groups focused on the perceptions of Black Iowans in Des Moines, IA, and four groups focused on the perceptions of rural Iowans in Runnells, IA.
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