We are today publishing a new set of equality, diversity and inclusion commitments which will guide our approach as an organization and in delivering our strategy and programmes. These are based on a number of internal working groups and trustee-level discussions held over the past twelve months and which have used the updated Charity Governance Code’s EDI Principle as a guide.
To support a culture of inclusion, equality and diversity:
- We are committed to anti-discrimination and to proactively developing diversity in our team, at a staff and governance level;
- Regularly reflecting and learning more about equality, diversity and inclusion issues, and how we can incorporate that learning into our practices;
- Ensuring our funding and advice is accessible to everyone and that it reaches a diverse group of recipients. This will include increasing our use of data and insights from the organisations we support;
- Where we identify barriers to access, helping people and organisations in breaking down or supporting organisations to overcome them through capacity building; and
- Working with our partners and projects to regularly review and improve so that we may reach our equality, diversity and inclusion aims. This will include advocacy work and support for initiatives that help create a new generation of diverse talent within the heritage and social investment sectors.
Developing these commitments does not represent an end point in the organisation’s work: we will regularly review and report on these commitments, and where necessary update them. Nor do we believe that we are yet able to say we have the systems and processes to enable everyone to overcome any barriers there may be to applying to us for funding or accessing support. However, they represent our genuine desire to improve our work over the short, medium and long-term. Read the full statement here.
Commenting on the development of the commitments, Matthew Mckeague, AHF CEO, said: “We know that both the heritage and social investment sectors do not sufficiently represent the diversity of the country and that we must work harder to improve this situation. We also want our funding and support to reach into all communities across the UK, and we need to see more heritage asset projects coming forward from people from ethnic minority and working-class communities. Part of this work includes understanding and helping to break downs barriers to accessing our funding, particularly in terms of getting projects going at an early stage. This remains a vital role for the AHF and may require additional support for communities that may lack access to capital, resources and skills – this work will give us a better insight into how we can target that support more effectively.”