Journey to Equity

Over the last two years, BGC Ottawa has focused on a journey of learning and development around Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging.

Equity for us means supporting values of fairness. Systemic and institutionalized racism and oppression impact our children and youth, staff, volunteers, and communities we serve. We are taking action to enhance our knowledge, build internal capacity, and collaborate with partners. Although our services are free, many children and youth still encounter other barriers, and we are committed to changing that. 

To do this, we center the voices and experiences of Indigenous, First Nations, Métis, Inuit, Muslim, Asian, African, Caribbean, and Black (ACB), and 2SLGBTQIA+ peoples and their overlapping identities. We foster an organizational culture that purposely values differences and promotes safety. We have created an Equity Policy that encourages transparency and accountability. Our new Equity Guiding Principles for our staff and volunteers shed light on topics that matter to members, educating, and offering tools for our work. Our in-depth Action Planacts as a map, a compass, and is our path to an inclusive, anti-racist, anti-oppressive, and equitable organization, created with support from an external consultant, Staff Equity Working Group, and enhanced and implemented by our Senior Equity Advisor and Senior Manager of People and Culture.

Please read our Equity Policy. We are grateful for the continued support of our communities. We look forward to receiving any feedback or questions you may have.

We have a lot of work to do, but here is what we have done together in the last two years: 

  • We created a Staff Equity Working Group focused on equity, diversity, inclusion and belonging initiatives led by various staff for the improvement of our internal culture, youth programming, and community outreach.
  • We worked with an external Consultant over the last year and a half to create a tangible plan to become an anti-oppressive organization, and to find ways to better serve Indigenous, Black, racialized and minoritized children, youth, and families.
  • We engaged our staff, along with community partners, in a multi-step learning process. This included formal anti-racism training for all full-time and part-time staff. This is now a regular part of our training schedule.
  • We have adopted anti-Black racism initiatives as an important pillar of our strategic five-year plan.
  • We have hired two senior leadership staff who are guiding and leading our efforts through an equity lens.
  • We are implementing a Diversity Library within all our clubhouses to represent the voices, excellence and realities of the children, youth, and families we work with.
  • We have increased our focus on celebrating special cultural holidays and representing diverse members’ stories through our media and storytelling.
  • We have invested in a virtual Staff Equity Book Club and physical Lending Library to help increase our knowledge and build our internal capacity as an organizational community.

Please read our Equity Policy. We are grateful for the continued support of the community. We look forward to receiving any feedback or questions you may have.

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