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We’re over the moon to learn that we have been nominated for the community organisation multi strand category of the National Diversity Awards. Equality and diversity play an integral part in our work across the Connected Voice family of services so we are pleased this shines through and we want to say a special thank you to the person who nominated us (which is still a mystery!)

In order for us to be shortlisted, and we really hope to achieve this, we need your support with our nomination. Judges will be looking at the quantity but also quality of nominations that we receive between now and 8 June.

If you can spare a few moments before 8 June, we’d really appreciate your help. Please visit: https://nationaldiversityawards.co.uk/nominate/29860/ and submit a few lines about why we deserve to win in this category.

Perhaps you’ve been impressed with the recent work of our Haref health equality project, which partnered with local organisations and local authorities to produce multi-language videos and written translations around COVID-19 for our local Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities that are being disproportionally affected by the virus.

Maybe you’re also familiar with Haref’s ‘usual’ work around improving access to health care for our diverse communities and helping to get health messages out into the community in a meaningful format, for example, through our annual Ramadan ‘safe fasting’ calendars or the Health Access Cards for asylum seekers and refugees.

You might be aware of our award winning Advocacy Services for Hate Crime, Statutory Advocacy and Health and Care Advocacy but did you know that we asked our commissioner for Health and Care Advocacy to amend the contract so we could specifically target people with protected characteristics under the Equality Act who may be more vulnerable and in need of support? (You can read more about this in our Autumn 2019 magazine on p18)

There’s a good chance that you don’t know about some of our past achievements within Advocacy because it’s not widely seen by the public: That we gave evidence on Joint Committee on the Mental Health Bill in Parliament about Mental Health Advocacy, which was a crucial step in giving people the legal right to advocacy support from an Independent Mental Health Advocate (IMHA). That we were the first UK organisation to offer specialist support for people with neurological conditions and specific health and social support for people from Black Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) communities. That we continually campaign and fight for people’s rights every day. Something that is more important than ever during the COVID-19 pandemic and misinformation surrounding the new Coronavirus Act 2020 (we will be sharing our work around this in our next issue of Connected Voice).

Perhaps you have seen or attended some of our Focused Networking Events and been impressed with our ‘current’ themes such as Inspiring Women, Food Poverty, or Supporting Minority Communities, and the range of organisations we invite to participate and speak?

You might have seen our research reports that capture the views of our local voluntary and community sector and highlight trends like food poverty and celebrating voluntary sector work with our diverse Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic communities. These are an important part of the work we do in representing local voluntary and community organisations.

There’s also a lot that goes on behind the scenes here at Connected Voice. For example, the work of our Equality and Diversity Group, which meets regularly to ensure the Equality and Diversity Policy is a working document that sets out how we can meet the needs of all the communities we serve, and asks whether we are representative and accessible to those communities. We work hard to make sure we have a healthy and inclusive workplace and this is recognised through our recent awards including Better Health at Work Gold and Investors in People.

In this brief snapshot we hope that you can see how equality and diversity is genuinely at the heart of the work that we do across the different strands of our organisation. We also hope that it provides some context to one of our five core values:

We champion equality. 
We believe that diversity should be celebrated and valued, and everyone deserves equality.
Working towards a fairer future for all, we won't stand still. By making an impact on causes big and small, we want to improve the quality of life across the region.

If you have any questions about our nomination or would like to know more about any of the areas of work outlined, please do get in touch with us: email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.