Somerset Community Foundation (SCF) is committed to treating all members of the Somerset community fairly, regardless of ethnic origin, sexual orientation, religious belief, background, location, age, ability, or other factors which sometimes give rise to discrimination.
Some groups and communities face inequalities and injustices in the way opportunities and resources are shared in society, and this includes access to charitable grants and support. As we address these barriers and include people with a diverse range of lived and learned experiences, we know our work will be richer and make more of a difference.
SCF advances Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) in accordance with our 2021 – 2025 Strategy and is consistent with our values. Our DEI Policy sets out in more detail how we approach our responsibilities. The meaning of these words to us is as follows:
- Diversity: means people’s different experiences, identities and points of view. For the Foundation, our focus is the diverse characteristics and backgrounds of our area’s population. That includes legally protected characteristics and other things which can affect people’s life chances, like appearance, gender identity, caring responsibilities, being from a working-class background, or being a migrant, refugee or asylum seeker.
- Equity: means everyone, no matter their background or characteristics, getting fair treatment and access to opportunities. This means recognising that some people experience inequality and injustice. So, for the Foundation, treating everyone the same (‘equality’) is not enough – we must strive to remove barriers people face.
- Inclusion: means everyone feeling they belong, being safe and respected, able to take part and realising their potential. For the Foundation, this involves striving to reach, listen to and involve people in our work who tend to be under-represented or whose voices tend not to be heard.
We committed to improving our performance with respect to DEI in 2020, supported by the creation a new sub-committee focusing on this. Most notably since then, we have:
- a more diverse and inclusive Board and Executive, bringing fresh perspectives and experiences to deliberations and delivery
- broader participation in our grants panels, with wider representation of the communities we serve.
We recognise that we can be doing so much more to increase our diversity as an organisation, to use our grant-making to support a diverse range of causes and to address inequality within our county. We look forward to sharing our progress with you as this work evolves.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Progress Report, published March 2023
Our first progress report highlights what we have done so far and what our next steps will be. It also, for the first time, provides an analysis of who we are. We acknowledge that there is much more we can and must do, and we are inviting comment and feedback on this update. You can view this update as a PDF here.