Human Services

International Institute of Metropolitan St. Louis

St. Louis' welcoming center for new Americans.

aka International Institute of St. Louis

St. Louis, MO

Mission

To help immigrants and their families be productive Americans and to champion ethnic diversity as a cultural and economic strength.

Notes from the Nonprofit

America is becoming increasingly dependent on immigrants to provide new population, a youthful workforce, and economic opportunity. Immigrants are valuable employees and colleagues, entrepreneurs, taxpayers, and consumers. The International Institute, a pioneer in the field of diversity, helps ensure that St. Louis immigrants are successful.

Annually, our wide array of adjustment services reaches more than 8,000 immigrants from 80 countries, approximately 5% of the St. Louis City and County foreign-born population, according to the most recent census. Thousands more attend and participate in our annual Festival of Nations, especially as performers and volunteers. We are respected by and have strong multigenerational ties to most local immigrant communities. Our staff are key consultants on a broad range of issues affecting the social, cultural and economic health of our region.

Ruling Year

1938

President & CEO

Ms. Anna E. Crosslin

Main Address

3401 Arsenal St.

St. Louis, MO 63118 USA

Keywords

refugees, immigrants, ESOL, employment, counseling, economic development, small business, elderly services, immigration, citizenship, refugee resettlement, anti-trafficking, festival, ethnic, cultural

EIN

43-0652640

 Number

1011511763

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Ethnic/Immigrant Services (P84)

Employment Procurement Assistance and Job Training (J20)

Cultural, Ethnic Awareness (A23)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Social Media

Programs + Results

What we aim to solve New!

A 2012 study by noted-economist Dr. Jack Strauss identified a strong correlation between growing cities and immigrant population growth. The study found that the St. Louis region's relative scarcity of immigrants explained its poor economic growth and the region's fall from the 10th largest MSA in the U.S. in 1970 to 18th in population and 20th in economic output in 2010.

Compared to other major US metro areas, St. Louis owes a significant portion of its foreign-born population growth to refugee resettlement, rather than to general immigration. So refugees are a valuable source of new population to meet St. Louis' need for more population - especially for residents who are racially and culturally diverse.

For refugee resettlement to be successful, a number of high quality short and longer term services are necessary. It is vital that a receiving community is well prepared to welcome refugees, so that newcomers and long-timers can live together in harmony and for mutual benefit.

Our programs

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Job Training & Placement

Education & Citizenship, including ESOL

Client Services, including Refugee Resettlement

Economic Development, including Peer Lending Circle & Global Farm

Community Engagement including Festival of Nations and II Business Solutions Center

Social Work & Health

Where we workNew!

Our Results

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one. These quantitative program results are self-reported by the organization, illustrating their committment to transparency, learning, and interest in helping the whole sector learn and grow.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Number of clients reporting increased knowledge after educational programs

TOTALS BY YEAR
Population(s) served

Adults,

Immigrants, newcomers, refugees

Related program

Education & Citizenship, including ESOL

Context notes

Adult refugee & immigrant students w/ limited English proficiency skills who after 60 hrs of classes improve by at least one Student Performance Level as measured by the CASAS or CLAS-E pre/post tests

Number of clients who complete job skills training

TOTALS BY YEAR
Population(s) served

Immigrants, newcomers, refugees

Related program

Job Training & Placement

Context notes

We offer 3 job-specific training classes: CNA, housekeeping, and sewing. Clients are counted for those who complete the training. Due to the economy improving in 2015 the client enrollment decreased.

Number of return website visitors

TOTALS BY YEAR
Population(s) served

General/Unspecified

Related program

Community Engagement including Festival of Nations and II Business Solutions Center

Context notes

We are increasingly harnessing the power of the internet and social networking venues as well educating, celebrating, and connecting St. Louis’ of many diverse constituencies.

Number of clients placed

TOTALS BY YEAR
Population(s) served

Immigrants, newcomers, refugees

Related program

Client Services, including Refugee Resettlement

Context notes

Our resettlement program continues to help refugees build new lives in St. Louis. In the first months after their arrival, we address basic needs for refugees, including food, housing & clothes.

Number of loans issued to clients

TOTALS BY YEAR
Population(s) served

Immigrants, newcomers, refugees

Related program

Economic Development, including Peer Lending Circle & Global Farm

Context notes

Clients use these loans to start or strengthen businesses.

Charting Impact

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?

What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?

How will they know if they are making progress?

What have and haven't they accomplished so far?

We have had a hand in the resettlement and integration of nearly every new immigrant population in the St. Louis region for almost 100 years. We work with newcomers to provide initial housing, jobs, orientation, and health support as needed. Later we provide citizenship and other community integration services that are vital during what is, for many immigrants, a lifelong adjustment process.

Awareness is growing that immigrants add value to our community and state. A large number are entrepreneurs, especially in high tech and science-related fields. They are also valuable new consumers and can help reverse population loss in the St. Louis region – a trend since the mid-last century.

The 2016-18 Strategic Plan charts our future direction by building on this competitive edge regarding depth and breadth of services and knowledge. It does so by advancing four strategic imperatives to benefit our clients and customers, local businesses, and the community at large.

1. OFFER TOP-NOTCH, FIRST-TOUCH SERVICES - Provide a continuum of superior immersion services for immigrants and their families.

In the new period of 2016-18, IISTL will strive to maintain quality and expand capacity in our core services to serve more refugee arrivals in St. Louis and at our new satellite location in Springfield. We will also grow our supplemental services, especially those that benefit the economic well-being of our clients. Examples include our urban farm, citizenship preparation, and job training initiatives.

2. FACILITATE FAMILY AND COMMUNITY ECONOMIC GROWTH - Provide superior investment services for both our customers and the larger St. Louis metropolitan community.

We will help start or expand immigrant-owned and operated small businesses by providing technical support, micro-loans, and credit counseling. A portion of these services will be offered through IISTL's wholly owned subsidiary, the II Community Development Corporation (IICDC).

3. FOSTER POSITIVE COMMUNITY RELATIONSHIPS - Provide superior inclusion services for the greater St. Louis area.

IISTL will seek more ways for immigrants and native-born Americans to better appreciate and value one another, especially by further growing Festival of Nations. Also, we will continue to lead the public engagement charge in-person and with technology. In partnership with parallel efforts both locally and nationally, we will advocate on behalf of immigrants and diversity issues.

4. ENSURE AGENCY SUSTAINABILITY - Ensure the long-term sustainability of the International Institute for the benefit of the St. Louis region.

We will continue to expand our communications, training, and revenue-building initiatives to more strongly position the Institute as the region's premier resource for diversity and inclusion. We will also seek ways to add more programming at our new headquarters campus and to utilize it as a revenue generator.

PROVIDE ONGOING ADJUSTMENT SERVICES:

We will explore more funding options for the refugee resettlement program services and staffing, to ease the high level of volatility in funding and services resulting from uncontrollable external forces. Meanwhile, we will look to grow our specialty services, especially to new communities of immigrants.

ADVANCE LONG-TERM, SUSTAINABLE SELF-SUFFICIENCY:

We will double the number of immigrant microloans and grow the size of the microloan fund accordingly. We will also tackle sustainability issues for several small business initiatives, including our urban farming program.

BUILD APPRECIATION FOR THE DIVERSE CULTURAL TRADITIONS AND CONTRIBUTIONS OF IMMIGRANTS:

We will seek to help bridge the cultural gap by producing our annual Festival of Nations to offer newcomers and long-timers with a means to explore and better appreciate each other's cultures. And we will explore ways to connect the stories of new immigrants with common American traditions, like cooking, family celebrations, and the arts.

STRENGTHEN KNOWLEDGE AND COMMUNICATION SKILLS ACROSS ST. LOUIS POPULATIONS:

We will offer more community presentations and cross-cultural training sessions and consult with area civic and corporate leaders to develop a welcoming community for immigrants and their families.

PROVIDE LEADERSHIP AND ADVOCACY:

It is not enough to make presentations and provide trainings. We must also more strongly strategically align ourselves with regional and national entities and actively promote the positive social, cultural and economic impact of immigrants, especially in cooperation with local corporate and economic development sectors.

GENERATE MORE FINANCIAL AND NON-FINANCIAL RESOURCES:

A multi-year Revenue Plan is being developed. The plan will review and assess current charitable fundraising and earned income sources and explore emerging revenue-building opportunities with individuals and businesses. In-kind issues including volunteerism, donated goods and services will also be reviewed.

ENHANCE THE AGENCY'S BRAND AND IMAGE:

Utilizing social networking and electronic communications, we will further engage Millennials. We will electronically publish a series of News Briefs as well as client and program-specific stories to appeal to stakeholders of all ages. And we will work to increase the number of visitors and length of visits to our web sites.

OPERATE IN A LEGAL, PROFESSIONAL, AND ETHICAL MANNER AND PROVIDE STRONG, IMPACTFUL PROGRAMS:

We will focus on maintaining our accreditations, expanding our business continuity plan, identifying more ways to integrate technology into our work, expanding intra-agency communication, and maintaining high fiscal and quality standards.

The International Institute of St. Louis, established in 1919, is a pioneer in the field of diversity. The Institute's highly-acclaimed programs are arranged in three service pillars: 1. Immersion (New arrivals); 2. Investment (Business development); and 3. Inclusion (Community integration). In all, our comprehensive array of adjustment services annually reaches more than 8,000 immigrants from 75 countries, approximately 8% of the St. Louis City and County 2010 foreign-born population. Our annual Festival of Nations is among our region's most popular events, drawing 140,000 visitors for a weekend of fun-filled yet educational exploration of the growing diversity of St. Louis' residents.

The Institute's staff of 75 is joined by more than 500 volunteers including student interns, AmerCorps and VISTA workers, and others. More than 150 local, statewide and national organizations serve as partners, collaborators and supporters of our services and mission.

Approximately 65% of revenue in our +$7 million annual budget comes from federal, state and local grants. We are a member of the United Way of Greater St. Louis and the US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants.

As a result, the Institute has important multigenerational ties to local immigrant communities. Our programs and services are locally and nationally-acclaimed. We also have deep knowledge of the state of the immigrant communities and population trends. Thus, we are well-positioned to serve as key consultants on a broad range of issues affecting the social, cultural and economic health of our region.

Thus, we are also well-positioned to develop further strategic alliances with the corporate sector. As our region, state and nation grow even more diverse, businesses will increasingly look to us for access, knowledge and training to expand their consumer markets and workforces.

We are proactive in program development – on the cutting edge of identifying and implementing new programs. IIBSC and IICDC are examples of how we've taken for-profit business strategies and modified them to meet a social purpose as well. Our programs are looked to as best practices, by others around the nation. All our program goals and measurable outcomes are tied to the strategic metrics in our Board-approved strategic plan. In 2016, we were within 10% or exceeded more than 90% of program-related strategic metrics which total 31.

Based on the key metrics approved in the 2016-18 Strategic Plan, each program/department has developed new measures or modified previous ones. Programs are continued to be reviewed for effectiveness and relevance with the current client population. Client Services: 2017 saw a significant decrease in refugee arrivals, nationwide and in St. Louis. IISTL resettled half the number of refugees that were resettled in 2016. Staffing was reduced as well. A challenge faced was continuing to do 6-month home visits with less staff. Our outcomes dictate how well we are training our families in a set of essential life skills necessary for long-term self-sufficiency. If at any point, after training a client who can still not adequately demonstrate the skill, we will reteach. Economic Development: Our resources are used to ensure that the loan underwriting process filters out as much inherent post-loan risk as possible. We provide clients with the skills and knowledge they will need to help them make good financial choices. Tracking credit score has helped us to identify those who may need additional assistance in improving their household and business financials. We are able to design tailored interventions for those who have not demonstrated improvement after 12 months. Education: The state-mandated standardized CLAS-E tests continued to be challenging to administer and track. We were successful this past year by making adjustments in our test administration and instructions including the reports we use to store and track progress data to make better use of these tests. Staff regularly review test and attendance records to track students' progress, commitment to study and readiness to promote to the next level. Employment: A decline in arrivals meant fewer individuals pursuing initial employment, and more individuals were seeking a better/different job. Those employed were less active in their job search due to time constraints. To ensure that active clients are able to find initial employment quickly, we focus on ensuring that participants attend job interviews as early and often as needed. The Workforce Solutions team meets bi-monthly to review cases of participants not attending interviews, and continues to find strategies to engage and refer these clients to opportunities as quickly as possible. Social Services: The number of clients served was lower than previous years but outcomes achieved surpassed our goal. With a lower caseload, workers are able to spend more time with clients thereby ensuring that they are becoming better able to manage their health independently but also that clients are receiving more information about community resources or referrals. Monthly team meetings occur within the programs to discuss cases, processes and problem solve. Employees are regularly consulted for ideas and suggestions on how to better improve services

External Reviews

Affiliations & Memberships

United Way Member Agency 1923

Photos

Financials

International Institute of Metropolitan St. Louis

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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  • Forms 990 for 2017, 2016 and 2016
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Board Leadership Practices

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

Yes

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?

Yes

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?

Yes

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?

Yes

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?

Yes

Organizational Demographics

In order to support nonprofits and gain valuable insight for the sector, GuideStar worked with D5—a five-year initiative to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in philanthropy—in creating a questionnaire. This section is a voluntary questionnaire that empowers organizations to share information on the demographics of who works in and leads organizations. To protect the identity of individuals, we do not display sexual orientation or disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff. Any values displayed in this section are percentages of the total number of individuals in each category (e.g. 20% of all Board members for X organization are female).

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Gender

Race & Ethnicity

Middle Eastern, Middle Eastern

Sexual Orientation

This organization reports that it does not collect this information.

Disability

This organization reports that it does not collect this information.

Diversity Strategies

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We track retention of staff, board, and volunteers across demographic categories
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We track income levels of staff, senior staff, and board across demographic categories
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We track the age of staff, senior staff, and board
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We track the diversity of vendors (e.g., consultants, professional service firms)
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We have a diversity committee in place
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We have a diversity manager in place
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We have a diversity plan
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We use other methods to support diversity