Lenses To Diversity & Inclusion
Dear Reader,Welcome to our second edition of Lenses To Diversity & Inclusion Newsletter!Happy New Year 2021!GLS D & I team,Today we profile second of the participating Youth-led Civil Society Organizations under our Lenses to Diversity & Inclusion project in partnership with Civicus Solidarity Fund.Meet the team behind GIVE HOPE UGANDA, as they share their story and how participating in the project is causing a cultural shift in their Organization including communities they serve.
Dennis Kisubi-Team Leader, GIVE HOPE UgandaKisubi Denis is a Ugandan aged 31 years old, graduate of Information Technology with over three years of experience in the community development sector. He is the Co-Founder and Executive Director at Give Hope Uganda that seeks to advance and promote quality and improved health and well-being for adolescents and young people with specific emphasis on promotion of Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights, Enhancing Gender Equality, Youth Empowerment, and promotion of youth livelihoods through; entrepreneurship skills development and he is a Voting Member at CIVICUS a global alliance of civil society organizations and activists dedicated to strengthening citizen action and civil society throughout the world.Currently, Kisubi is YALI Alumni Cohort40 Public Management at YALI EAST AFRICA REGIONAL LEADERSHIP CENTER (YALIRLCEA), Change Maker at Project Pakati Africa under African Leadership Institute (AFLI), as Youth Advisor at local Level, Youth Connekt Africa Summit Alumni 2018 and Young Leaders Forum Open Society Initiative for Eastern Africa (OSIEA) Alumni 2018He is passionate about everything Youth, media and information literacy, he has led successful 2018 SPEAK Campaigns to redesign narratives about young people such as #TogetherWeSpeak on Girls Speak Campaign on Menstrual Health Management in Uganda #GoodDeedsDay in Uganda and #U=U Campaign in Uganda and #EndChildMarriage Campaign @AUYouthProgram in partnership with UNICEF_AUOffice 2020
GHU BOARD MEMBERS
WHAT MOTIVATED YOU TO START GHU?
I was motivated after realizing the prevailing needs of our communities and negligence of several concerned stakeholders. So, I decided to call upon fellow youth and we teamed up with different young volunteers and formed a community group which was later registered as Grassroots Community Based Organization (CBO) to establish means of advocacy and capacity building for our people whose lives were getting worse in areas such as education, HIV/AIDS, Adolescent Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights, youth unemployment and redundancy, Gender Based Violence (GBV) and discrimination, drug abuse among other societal challenges in both rural and urban areas covering slum, rural and urban areas of Kira Municipality in Wakiso District in Uganda.HOW DOES YOUR CAUSE RELATE TO DIVERSITY AND INCLUSINON?
Diversity refers to the practice or quality of including or involving people from a range of different social and ethnic backgrounds and of different genders, sexual orientations.Inclusion refers to action or state of including or being included within a group or structure, basically being made part of something. Diversity and Inclusion is meant to include everyone in society with Equal opportunities.GHU’s overall goal of Diversity and Inclusion is to empower vulnerable and marginalized adolescent young people, girls and young women to live quality lives with equity, dignity and opportunities to realize their full potential. We strive and intend to address all forms of violence like tenaage pregnancies child marriage, gender based violence among others. We work together with community members without discriminating gender, sex, race through raising awareness, campaigns and advocacy for Human Rights to mitigate the impacts of violence through implementing Health services and Speaking out for the minority groups. Working together is very vital; we believe that it’s everyone’s responsibility to get involved in the issues affecting their community hence holding them accountable.
WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNT FROM BEING PART OF D&I PROGRAMME BEING FACILITATED BY GLOBAL LEARNING FOR SUSTAINABILITY? I want to thank GLS in partnership with CIVICUS for the wonderful opportunity granted to us as GHU team to participate in this program. It was an opener of its kind towards GHU’s formation.A lot was shared and I noted some lessons as follows;-
- I learnt the best principles, key components, work culture and HR implementation tools in Diversity and Inclusion.I learnt how to measuring levels of D&I through Engagement i.e. Consistently speak positively about the organization to co–workers, potential employees and other critical third parties,having an intense desire to be a member of the organization and exert extra effort and engagement in work that contributes to organizational success.I learnt that SWOT analysis as a tool can be manipulated to fit various policies in this case diversity and inclusion.I learnt to improve performance using D&I strategies for example assigning top executive the responsibility of leading & sponsoring D&I, creating behavioral standards & hold leaders accountable for results, training staff at all levels on topics related to D&I, creating employee networks e.g. employee resource group, community outreach groups and reporting goals and measure progress.
Surely at GHU we were practicing D&I though in mess. This is seen in board of directors inclusive of both male and male genders with the Chairperson of the board being male and Vice Chairperson being Male. This showed that there was no D&I at all though we where involving every one.So after attaining training of D&I everything is changing gradually. We are on look to change everything in the structure governing our organization for equal employment opportunities to all.
HOW DID THE CLIMATE SURVEY HELP YOU WORK TOWARDS D&I BASED ON RESPONSES FROM YOUR TEAM? The responses from our team made me realize that there was a need for technology inclusion at work place whereby training is needed Diversity and Inclusion for staffs.The Climate survey helped us to realize our weaknesses, Strengths, Threats and Opportunities and we realized that we needed to draft SWOT analysis together to avoid manipulation towards diversity and Inclusion.
WHAT CHALLENGES WAS/IS YOUR ORGANIZATION FACING IN TERMS OF DIVERSITY & INCLUSION? Before the training GHU had a lot of challenges in Human Resource Policies like strategies to improve performance, gaps in the Human Resource Policy and many more which required us to identify and fill those gaps in order to be more diverse and inclusive. This was addressed during the training and at the end of the training with the consultant.Just like any other organisation, GHU also still facing challenges of financial resources to run its day to day activities like advocacy, training of staffs and capacity building and many more.
HOW HAS THE CAPACITY BUILDING AND WORKING WITH OTHER ORGANIZATIONS HEPED YOU TO START WORKING ON THE ISSUES IDENTIFIED? TALK ABOUT THE ACTION PLANS YOU SHARED AND HOW YOU WILL IMPLEMENT THEM?
The capacity building and working with other organizations has helped in the way that I have consulted fellow participants how to fill key positions in our structure and we have got way forward on working on this.
Orientation of staff on HR Policies. This was not in our own making but after attending training we managed to consult how others are doing in their organisations and we gave ourselves target of 6 month to start solving this problem.
Conducting training programs. I realize now that I am rich in networks. After attending the training I met different team leaders from different Organizations with different capacities that now there is no worry of technical expertise.
DIVERSITY & INCLUSION TIPS by Harriet K Mukajambo,Executive Director Global Learning for Sustainability
Have you thought of the some of the ways you can nurture inclusion at you workplace? Building a workplace culture where everyone feels included can be a daring and a daunting task to many Chief Executives and managers.But here are some 2 tips to get you going:Start by educating and training managers about Inclusion at workplace. .As a leader you can challenge yourself too,by accepting and respecting diversity and make it work through inclusion.Checking or rethinking Organization or company policies by creating new ones or entirely abolishing the previous ones to allow for change to happen. For instance instance think about what new policies you may need to increase representation of particular marginalized and vulnerable groups in your board leadership, programs and activities. Advocating for people living with disabilities may require including person(s) with disabilities in across various leadership levels .