1 October 2020
Anchor Hanover celebrates Black History Month
This October Anchor Hanover is marking Black History Month by celebrating accomplishments of colleagues and residents and honouring the contributions of Black Britons across history.
The celebrations form a part of the organisation’s ongoing commitment to diversity and reducing barriers to progression for Black, Asian and ethnic minority colleagues.
The month will see Anchor Hanover celebrating colleagues who are actively involved in activities promoting cultural understanding and diversity. One of them is Pauline Codjoe (46), a Location Manager at Woodside Square in North London, who was born in Ghana.
Outside of her role at Anchor Hanover, Pauline does a lot of community engagement work with the National Council of Ghanaian Unions, organising seminars, helping young people learn about their cultural history and liaising with both the UK and Ghanaian governments on policy-related issues. She’s also involved with various organisations working to tackle issues in the wider community, such as human trafficking and domestic violence and is passionate about giving young people from minority ethnic backgrounds the best start in life.
Black History Month is also an opportunity to recognise the rich history of Anchor Hanover residents, such as Mona Clement Edwards (89) who lives at Anchor’s Rose court care home in Southwark.
Mona was born in Grenada and lived in Trinidad working as a primary school teacher, before arriving in Southampton in November 1957 in pursuit of her dream of becoming a nurse. She trained at a hospital in North London, and spent years juggling her career as a nurse and raising her five children. She later switched careers to become a telegraphist. In retirement, Mona devoted her time to raising her grandchildren, was a registered childminder and an active member of her local church as well as a volunteer at a local primary school, where she mentored the after-school club.
To bring Black History Month to life for residents, Anchor Hanover has developed a dedicated resource pack for its care homes and housing locations, which will be shared across the country. From timelines with key dates from black history of Britain, to recipe books, the famous Martin Luther King, Jr.’s I have a dream speech, group discussion guides and themed quizzes, the pack will support meaningful activity and celebrate Black History Month through a range of different activities.
This year’s celebrations reflect the wider organisational priority and an ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion. Last year, Anchor Hanover launched a trial leadership programme for Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) colleagues, focused on soft skills development. During the programme, participants partnered with senior managers to take part in reverse mentoring to foster deeper understanding of experiences and challenges faced by people from BAME communities. The initiative also involves Chief Executive of Anchor Hanover Jane Ashcroft.
Jane’s mentor is Teagan Robinson (24), Internal Recruiter and Co-chair of Anchor Hanover’s BAME Network. Anchor Hanover’s BAME network supports colleagues and consults on a range of policy decisions across the business to ensure they reflect the experiences of BAME communities.
Teagan Robinson said:
It’s so important that organisations celebrate Black History Month and use this opportunity to raise awareness of Black history and culture – for many people, it can be a first step to embrace and celebrate diversity and difference all year round.
With the current landscape, it’s vital that we’re having open and honest conversations about diversity and inclusion. A lot has been achieved at Anchor Hanover already, and it’s great that we continue in our commitment to understanding and creating an inclusive environment for all colleagues.
The reverse mentoring trial reflects the firm commitment, driven from the top of the organisation, to reducing barriers and increasing diversity. Last year, Anchor Hanover appointed Ruth Petzold as its Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Manager to ensure a permanent, strategic focus on the issue. Senior management have been attending EDI training sessions focused on unconscious bias and white privilege and a new Leadership Programme is about to launch, which will include sessions addressing the specific issues faced by BAME communities.
Jane Ashcroft CBE, Anchor Hanover Chief Executive, said:
At Anchor Hanover we have been working hard to identify ways in which we, as an organisation, can support our BAME colleagues and provide a welcoming and understanding environment for both colleagues and residents.
We are unequivocally committed to strengthening our equality, diversity and inclusion practices and are working closely with the BAME Network to find ways to support BAME colleagues’ day-to-day work and career progression.
Diversity and Inclusion
Anchor Hanover ensures that dignity, equality and justice are central to the way we work, and that the distinctive, diverse and unique contributions of our employees and customers are valued.
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Anchor Hanover celebrates Black History Month
This October we are marking Black History Month by celebrating accomplishments of colleagues and residents and honouring the contributions of Black Britons across history.