The Importance of Cultural Considerations in Nonprofit Communities with Kelly Dumas

Are you a nonprofit leader searching for ways to better serve your community? Look no further! I chat with special guest, Kelly Dumas, about how you can have a bigger impact on the people you serve. She discusses the importance of cultural considerations, going beyond “checking the box” and truly understanding your community. Kelly shares her first-hand experience of this when an individual came to her organization after a hallucination misdiagnosis. In reality, this person was performing a spiritual practice that is common in their culture, but no one took the time to become aware of these cultural differences. There are so many powerful lessons nonprofit leaders can take away from Kelly’s experiences.    


About Kelly

Kelly Dumas is a licensed clinical social worker and serves as the Executive Director of the Healing Hub of New York, Inc. She holds over 20 years of experience in behavioral health and nonprofits. Her work has included providing clinical services, executive and senior leadership, and overseeing the operations of the largest behavioral health organization in Western New York where she developed and led many programs, including the Black Mental Health Team which she brought together to meet the needs of the community following the racially motivated TOPS shooting that took 10 precious lives and left many scarred. 

A subject matter expert in community Black mental health, Kelly has traveled abroad to learn about indigenous practices that can be incorporated into the work she does within the community. She has also facilitated trainers to come to Buffalo and train 22 individuals in Indigenous Psychotherapy, an approach that centers people of color. She is a woman of faith and serves as the Director of Mental Health at Zion Dominion Global Ministries where she has worshipped for 22 years. Kelly is also an adjunct professor at the University at Buffalo School of Social Work. She enjoys spending time with her husband Reggie and two children Denise and Dennis.


Read the podcast transcript here.


Episode Summary

In this episode, you’ll learn the importance of cultural considerations in the nonprofit sector, including:

•Why nonprofits need to know and understand the people they serve (6:00)

•Understanding cultural practices in the communities you serve (10:10)

•Supporting communities healing from trauma (17:40)

•The power of hope (21:00)

•How understanding your finances supports your leadership efforts (25:20) 

•The impact of a strong financial management system (31:00)



“Indigenous psychotherapy really just teaches how you kind of incorporate the differences that may exist and often exist when you are working with people of color.”

“I just felt this calling that my assignment, which I’m very clear on, is centered around addressing the mental wellness of the people.”

“A nonprofit is not for the weak at heart. There are rough days, but hope keeps me going.”



Donate to the Healing Hub of New York, Inc.:

Follow the Healing Hub of New York, Inc. on Instagram: @healinghubny

Connect with Kelly on LinkedIn:

Keep up to date with the podcast: @100degreesconsulting

Follow Stephanie on Instagram: @stephanie.skry/ 

Connect with Stephanie on LinkedIn: 

Visit the podcast page:


Want more of the podcast?

New episodes are released weekly! Find them all plus show notes and exclusive bonus content at

Leave us a review! Click here, scroll to the bottom, tap to rate with five stars, and select “Write a Review.” Let me know what you loved most about this episode!

Subscribe to the show so you don’t miss a thing!