This UK Black History Month we’ve been exploring the rich diversity of identity, culture and experience amongst our Black and Black Heritage employees at Multiverse. Activities were led by our Diversity Equity & Inclusion (DEI) champions and Senior DEI Manager, and included a weekly newsletter sharing our employees’ experiences of Black British identity, our monthly Book Club reading Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and an event to celebrate Caribbean and African cultures at the close of the month. We also welcomed a panel of experts to explore the Black experience at work, as part of the community’s Seat At The Table series of events.
Black History Month - Personal Stories
To celebrate UK Black History Month, members of the Multiverse team shared personal stories about their identity and experiences in a series of newsletters called Stories From The Diaspora. The newsletters covered a number of important topics, from representation to the power of names. Here are some inspiring quotes shared in their stories:
“Black History Month, for me, is about being visible, unapologetic and ensuring my voice can be heard because you never know whose reality you are changing just by being you.” - Naaman Brown, Community Events Producer
“If you take anything away from the Black Lives Matter movement… understand that your Black students, friends and colleagues are hurting and they need YOU to stand up with them, fight alongside them, lend your voice to amplify theirs. Use your White privilege to help other Black and non-Black POC. Be an ally!” - Sarah Olubunmi, Digital Business Programme Lead
“Names are powerful and significant and they tell a story. Let us appreciate the beauty and diversity of those stories and make people feel seen and included by pronouncing their names correctly.” - Naivasha Mwanji, Partnerships and Outreach Manager
“The importance of connecting with your FULL identity and who you are can never be underestimated. I am grateful to be able to do that and even though in some rooms I am still the only Black person, I proudly represent who I am, knowing that in doing so I am showing others that it is okay to do so too.” - Chichi Eruchalu, Regional Director of Delivery, UK and Europe
Book Club & Celebration Event
This month, the Multiverse book club discussed 'Half of a Yellow Sun' by Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Multiverse covered the cost of the novel for all attendees, making sure that everyone could get involved in this important conversation.
To top it all off, we ended the month with a celebration event in our London office, hosted by our DEI Champions. Much can be learnt about different cultures from experiencing the music, drinks and food, so we invited everyone at Multiverse to enjoy some traditional Caribbean punch (alcoholic and non-alcoholic), and African & Caribbean food and music. This was a great opportunity for our people to come together, learn and have fun!
Seat At The Table
For our apprentices, we hosted a Seat At The Table event to celebrate Black History Month in the UK. A Seat At The Table is a discussion-based event designed to give our apprentices the tools they need to create inclusive working environments. Every month, we shine a spotlight on the experiences of those from underrepresented communities in the workplace. This month, a panel of experts explored the Black experience at work and discussed topics including mentorship, intersectionality, code-switching, internal networking and DEI metrics.
A big thank you to our incredible panel; Naaman Brown (Community Events Producer at Multiverse), Nana Bempah (Founder of Pocc, Executive Producer, WACL Future Leader, Campaign Top 10 Trailblazer), Leke Sholuade (Founder at Black Valley), and Mylene Sylvestre (Publishing Director at Guardian News & Media and Co-Founder of the Women of Colour Global Network).
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at Multiverse
We want to be a leader in DEI, so we’re creating the change we want to see in the world, inside Multiverse. As we continue to grow rapidly, we're committed to building a diverse workforce at all levels of our organisation – and creating a working environment where everyone can thrive.