Start Mutual Mentoring Today

Blog post by Esmeralda Castrillo-Dick

Wednesday 21 November 2018

Communications professionals from across public services celebrate the success of the GCS’ pioneering mutual mentoring programme and launch the next recruitment round.

Mutual Mentoring event image

Conversations: Connecting Diverse Voices (CCDV) is a mutual mentoring initiative that encourages discussions on diversity and inclusion (D&I) with decision makers across government. On 12 November, GCS members from across grades, departments and backgrounds came together to celebrate the end of a successful pilot programme and launch the next phase. If you also want to make your mark in D&I you can sign up today by following this link.

The programme asks Senior Civil Servants (SCS) which areas of D&I they feel least confident championing and connects them with the relevant experience and expertise to grow their confidence. At the same time it offers those with the expertise the opportunity to work with a Senior Civil Servant on a legacy project. During our pilot, partners focused on different areas of D&I including: job shares, disability, LGBTQ, BAME, lower socio-economic backgrounds, regional staff, ageism, mental health, care leavers, gender and apprentices. By the end of the programme our feedback surveys showed that SCS confidence had grown in championing every one of the areas identified. Additionally, this is what two of our participants had to say about their experience as partners on the programme:

“CCDV wanted to know about me, and my story, and I now feel that what I have to say matters and I can make a difference by just talking about my experience as a black woman in the Civil Service. Connecting Diverse Voices attracted me because I had the opportunity to work with a senior colleague from another department and others from all different backgrounds and cultures to achieve the same goal, and best of all I have made a friend for life.”
Diversity mentor and Internal Communications Manager at the Home Office, Lisa Goering

“The CCDV programme attracted me because I thought it would provide useful experience to help me to lead a team recognising the value of diversity and inclusion. It’s been a really helpful experience, not just professionally but personally as well, as I’ve found a great friend within the Civil Service.”
Diversity mentee, Head of External Engagement at the Office for Rail and Road, Jennifer Webber

As the pilot programme comes to an end, it seems appropriate to reflect on how we got here. The programme started as no more than an idea just over a year ago and grew through the enthusiasm and energy of those that heard about it and chose to find out more. A year after it all began, CCDV is part of the Government Communications D&I strategy, our participants have produced some incredible legacies and we were honoured to celebrate the inspiring partnerships alongside GCS D&I Champion Selvin Brown, at a reception in No10 Downing Street.

But we must not forget that our work is not done. We are now launching our second recruitment round and hope that, whatever your grade and whatever your background, you will share our blog and join us by following this link. Whether you have always been passionate about D&I or have never really understood what it’s about, we invite you to make your mark by joining us today, and help us maintain GCS’ role as a leading profession across government.

If you would like to read about the experience of other CCDV participants, read this blog by a fast streamer and a deputy director, who discuss their experiences communicating on LGBT issues as part of Conversations: Connecting Diverse Voices.

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