Mutually Inclusive

A WGVU initiative in partnership with the W.K. Kellogg Foundation using on-air programs and community events to explore issues of inclusion and equity.

The protestors presented the commission a letter they had drafted on behalf of the Kent County Commission stating an end to the contract with ICE.   

Commissioners Robert Womack, representing Grand Rapids and Betsy Melton, representing the Kentwood, signed the letter. 

“ICE is doing things that is unconstitutional. They are doing things that is violating human rights. People don’t really understand that when they pull over anyone Hispanic the first they are thinking is where is your green card. Who wants to be harassed all the time.” 

"Spiritual but not religious": a growing faith group

Jul 24, 2018

Spiritual but not religious. According to the Pew Research Center, the number of adults in the United States who consider themselves spiritual but not religious has grown by 8 percent this past year. 

Today, we are interviewing, Inderjit Singh Moondra who considers himself spiritually a Sikh but not a religious one. 

“You should live your life the most selfless way possible, leave your ego behind and be nice to people, be kind, be loyal.” 

Sikhism is the world’s fifth largest religion. Sikhs believe in one God, equality, freedom of religion and community service. 

Weekly we focus on the work of area organizations advancing inclusion and equity in our community. This morning we welcome Clare Shubert, Director of Engagement and Programming with the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation to talk about the Gerald R. Ford Student Essay Challenge, and this year's theme, courage. Accompanying Clare is first place essay winner, Aneeqa Hasan, a Bengali-American and recent graduate of Forest Hills Central High School. Joining the conversation is WGVU grant writer, Steve Chappell.  This weekly segment is part of a grant from the W.K.

When Lyonel Lagrone was flooded with concerns of discrimination with residents of color he decided to take a deep dive into finding out what processes were in place to address this. 

“The current ordinance you don’t really know what employment discrimination is and what it means and when you have something like that that is so incredibly broad that its weak.”   

When separation and deportation hits close to home

Jul 17, 2018
Andrew Schultz


At 10 years old, Liliana Torres, whose name we have changed to protect her identity, experienced family separation for the first time when immigration authorities came to her neighborhood and detained and deported her uncle. 

“So I had to have that really awkward talk with my parents after experiencing this really traumatizing event of like having to hide when these immigration officers were around and searching these houses because we lived across the street and they actually searched our house from the outside and I saw these flashlights and everything.”    

On Tuesday, The Rodriguez-Garcia and Espinosa Family were one of the ten contestants out of 100, who received $20,000 in the 100 Ideas, a citywide pitch competition launched by Start Garden. What made them win – you might ask. Their start-up business, Soldadera Coffee a family owned small business whose goal is to bring a cold brew to the community. 

Mario Rodriguez takes care of the general management of the company, explains that the inspiration behind the coffee is their Grandmother Cristina, a social and political activist from Mexico. 

Weekly we focus on the work of area organizations advancing inclusion and equity in our community. This morning we welcome Gema Lowe, community organizer for Movimiento Cosecha GR. Joining the discussion is WGVU inclusion reporter, Michelle Jokisch Polo, and WGVU grant writer, Steve Chappell. This weekly segment is part of a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation aimed at increasing West Michigan’s capacity to influence public narrative affecting children and families of color.

John Rothwell / The Rapidian

This Spring close to 3,000 children were separated at their border from their parents by U.S. Immigration authorities before U.S. District Court Judge Dana Sabraw rules last week that the Trump administration had until July 10 to reunite migrant children under the age of five with their families and until July 26 to reunite the rest. 

Gloria Trejo: living as an asylum seeker in the United States

Jul 10, 2018


Gloria Trejo, writer, poet, teacher, mother and asylum seeker from Rio Bravo, Tamaulipas, Mexico. This is a personal story from a resident of Grand Rapids, Michigan who came to the United States in 2012 with her son fleeing from violence and seeking asylum. 

The months before she had to enter the United States, Trejo’s son, Javier, whose name we have changed to protect his identity, was kidnapped. It was an organized crime and she lost everything in the efforts of trying to get her son back.