National Inclusion Week 2021 is taking place from 27th September until 3rd October.
It is a time when we celebrate everyday inclusion in all its forms and learn from one another by sharing best practice, successes, and challenges relating to diversity and inclusion. As a part of this week, we would like to introduce you to the Dambuster Diversity Council.
The Council is one of the two internal working groups at Deep Silver Dambuster Studios.
In this short blog, you’ll learn who the Council are, what their role is within the studio, and some of the things they've been working on. The Wellbeing Committee is the other staff-led working group, which you can read about here.
The Diversity Council Mission Statement:
‘Our commitment is to diversity and equality.
We want to foster an inclusive culture where everyone, from all backgrounds and walks of life, feels welcome.
Through diversity we strengthen our team, enrich our creativity and promote positive change in the wider industry’.
Who are They?
The Council is made up of eight different team members spanning across Art, Animation, Design, Operations, HR, and Production.
Each of them regularly volunteers their time to meet up and work on projects to promote diversity and inclusiveness within the studio and in the work we produce.
However, it's not down to just them. Everyone in the studio can put forward suggestions, raise concerns, and have their say on these topics.
They can do this by reaching out to a member of the Council personally or by submitting their thoughts via our anonymous suggestion box.
'I joined the council because I wanted to help make sure conversations about diversity, as well as initiatives to enact change, happen. It's encouraging working somewhere that wants to actively improve how inclusive we are, and allows the space, time and resource for that to take place.
So far we've had some difficult discussions, but I think it's vital for us to have them. Not only can we make our art better, but we can raise awareness of how these issues impact people in the real world and in our studio. We can take steps to create a more open, welcoming environment that is fair for everybody..' - Lydia Cockerham, Narrative Designer at Deep Silver Dambuster Studios.
Here are some of the things the Council has worked on so far.
Pride Month 2021
In June, Dambuster celebrated Pride with a whole host of activities organised by the Diversity Council.
We’ve already covered what we got up to during the month in a recent blog post, which you can read here, so we won’t go into too many details.
But some of the things we did as a studio included a social media campaign about our favourite LGBTQ+ characters, a Pride logo design competition, and welcoming a guest speaker to deliver a talk on 'Why Representation Matters'.
[Lizzi told us about her favourite LGBTQ+ character, Parvati from the Outerworlds, during Pride Month.
Women’s History Month
March is Women’s History Month, a time when we look at the contributions women have made to events in history, modern society, industry, and more.
The Council decided the best way to celebrate this important month was by highlighting the talented women we have working in the various departments at Dambuster through a social media campaign.
We had volunteers from departments such as Art, Animation, Design, HR, and Production who introduced themselves and told our audience the reason why they chose to work in their field.
We had amazing engagement with the posts and hopefully inspired more women to consider joining the games industry.
[An example post from Women's History Month introducing Junior Core Tech Programmer, Rosanna]
Neurodiversity Module and Future Training Sessions
The Brain Charity estimates that there are ‘10,000,000 people in the UK living with a neurological condition which has a significant impact on their lives.
Over 1,000,000 people (2% of the UK population) are disabled by their neurological condition’.
Neurological conditions affect the lives of a large portion of the population. Because of this, during a meeting, the Council recognised a need to educate the studio on neurodiversity.
Diversity and Talent Development Specialist, Emma Green, recently created a neurodiversity training module for the studio to undertake.
The training covers conditions such as Autism, Asperger's, Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, ADHD, and more. It was designed to give us all an introduction to these conditions, so that we can all be more aware and considerate of the many different neurological factors that could impact the lives of our peers inside and outside of work.
We're in the process of booking other educational training on several different diversity and inclusion related topics, and we will be sure to update our social channels when they happen.
Stay Tuned for More
We hope that this short blog has given you a helpful insight into the Dambuster Diversity Council and some of the things they do. We will continue to update you with their progress in the future and if you are celebrating National Inclusion Week too, let us know how over on Twitter or LinkedIn.