About Us

|About Us
About Us 2017-08-29T12:08:15+00:00

Who We Are

Diversity House was formally opened on the 27th of March 2007 with an office in Phoenix House, Central Avenue, Sittingbourne, as charitable organisation providing both community and prison-based services for diverse communities across Kent.

The charity aims to promote community integration, re-integration, social inclusion and cohesion within the Swale and Kent communities. It is our belief that individuals, regardless of their race, ethnicity, age, gender, disability, religion and believes, sexuality, sexual orientation, social class, and other social factors, should be treated with dignity, respect and adequate opportunities to access services within the community.

Services to Minority Communities

We provide numerous culturally proficient community services including – Advice, Information, advocacy and guidance on access to housing, employment, resolution of family and social problems, addressing race and hate incidents, health promotion and health education, social networking opportunities, drop-in-services, youth club, culture and heritage programs, gender issues, volunteering, among others. Also, all the services of the charity is designed to promote cultural understanding, acceptance of others beliefs and values, respecting age, disability, gender and all the protected characteristics as depicted in the Equality Act 2010. Education. In order to achieve the aforementioned, training and development on cultural awareness, equality, diversity and inclusion are paramount to the charity’s services. Other services provided include mentoring and counselling services, basic training in computing skills, CV writing, and a drop-in- centre, which acts as a hub for socialising, dissemination of well researched information, and for sign posting individuals to other relevant services and authorities.

Our services are easy to access as individuals can be referred or just drop in to see us. We do not believe in the rigid bureaucratic practices impeding people from engaging with community services. Our services users can expect full assessment of their needs with agreed actions put together to address identified issues. All service users are sure to receive culturally proficient support and anti-discriminatory services in line with the ethics and professional standards of our various areas of practice.

 

Services to Service Providers

Our services are not only geared towards individual service users in the community. We also provide information, advice and support for service providers to enable them engage with the so called “Hard to Reach” groups. Our services include knowledge exchange with practitioners and their organisations, delivering workshops, training and seminars on cultural and heritage issues, cultural proficiency, equality, diversity and inclusion, equality impact analysis and gender analysis and gender mainstreaming, among others. Also, we run seminars, workshops and conferences on how to promote service users involvement and participation. We leverage opportunities for organisations to implement joint initiatives and joint working. The following are examples of people and organisations who use our services, young people, children and families, the unemployed, students, older people, those with mental health issues, refugees and asylum seeks, ex-offenders and those still in incarceration.

INDIVIDUALS

Accessing community care, reporting racist incidents, information, advice, advocacy and health promotion

PUBLIC SECTOR

HM Prisons, Kent Police, Kent County Council, Swale Borough Council, Educational institutions, Health and Social care organisations

EDUCATIONAL BODIES

St. Michael’s C of E Primary School, Maidstone, Fulston Manor Secondary School, Sittingbourne, Greenwich University, University of Kent at Canterbury – The Gateways Project, and others.

PRIVATE COMPANIES

Home Touch, Harbow Printers, The Printers Chatham Limited, Bantu Arts, Wuntanara, Poema, Abtax CA, Lydens Accountants, Lamplight, Aether Digital, Polarity, HSBC, Pure Contribution Limited, Develop Systems IT, Namesco Limited, and others.

Trustees & Our Team

Christine LockeChair and CEO
Christine holds a Master of Science degree in Health Promotion and Public Health; Master of Arts in Community Cohesion Management; a post graduate diploma in Addictive behaviours; a post graduate diploma in French Translation; BA (Hons) in Modern European Languages (French/English) and a host of other degrees.

She is a qualified teacher, administrator, bilingual secretary, banker, community development and health promotion practitioner, to mention but a few. Also, she is a keen community activist who always advocates for social inclusion and cohesion, justice for all and work hard to ensure the operationalization of the theoretical principles of these areas, that is, from the commissioning to delivery phases of community services, particularly, health and social care services. She abhors the use of terminologies such as: – “hard to reach” or “seldom heard” communities and believe that it is the excuse used by lazy and rigid individuals/organisations to not develop strategies for engaging and working with communities. Christine has developed culturally proficient toolkit which will enable individuals and systems to deliver culturally appropriate services to their clients.

Patrick LockeTrustee of Diversity House
Mr Locke worked with the Royal Engineers where he served for 22years (full service). He also worked for Lloyds TSB (Business office) and the Millennium Dome, as the Facilities Manager. He has extensive experience in Facilities and Security Management and applies this to his position as a trustee in Diversity House.
Mrs Chris WhiteTrustee of Diversity House
Chris is currently the Director of Swale Council for Voluntary Service (CVS) and Volunteer Centre, the main umbrella organisation offering information and support to the voluntary and community sector in Swale. She has worked for Swale CVS for 23 years and started as a part time Volunteer coordinator working up to taking over as Director six years ago. Prior to this, she worked for Kent County Council Social Services recruiting volunteers to support children with both physical and learning disabilities. She believes in the ethos of volunteering and have enjoyed being a volunteer myself including agreeing to help out at a Cub Scout meeting for two weeks which turned into running the Cubs for over 20 years. Chris joined the SWEW committee as the Chairperson because she can understand how vital it is for women to have a voice and believes that this project could make a real difference in the lives of women in Swale.
Pastor Tunde-JothamTrustee of Diversity House
He is the Pastor of the New Covenant Church, Sittingbourne. With over ten years in ministry, he is committed to bringing the good news of Jesus Christ to people all over the world. Pastor Tunde was born and educated in South West Nigeria and was an academician before moving to the United Kingdom in 1990. On his arrival into the United Kingdom, he embarked upon a career in Local Government Housing rising to the position of a Principal Officer. This was then followed by a period of mortgage brokerage until his calling to start a branch of the New Covenant Church in Sittingbourne. Pastor Tunde is currently engaged in several community activities and is a much sought after Conference speaker. He is well known for his practical approach to the teaching of the Bible and has encouraged many to pursue a personal relationship with God. Pastor Tunde and his wife Tolu have two daughters and live in Sittingbourne.
Mrs Rosemary Dymond DLPatron of Diversity House
A practising Headteacher for over 26 years, Chairman of the Thameside Schools Music Association and Trustee of the Local Learning Partnership also serving on local sports bodies. Trustee of Cobham College and Chairman of the Friends of Cobham Hall.

Our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Statement

Diversity House believe that the promotion of EDI is important in combating injustice against those who share any of the protected characteristics under the Equality Act 2010. It is illegal, and unfair, for a person to experience disadvantage on the basis of a protected characteristic; all our staff and stakeholders are entitled to expect that they will be treated fairly. Diversity House aims to be a more inclusive workplace because organisations free from discrimination can work more efficiently and achieve the greatest benefits.

We will continue to be a wholly inclusive service where differences are encouraged, respected and valued. As an Equality and Human Rights Champion, we require all our partners and collaborators to comply with equalities legislation and actively promote Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI).

Our Aims:

  • To ensure equality of opportunity and outcome,
  • To promote an inclusive culture,
  • To secure freedom from discrimination on the grounds of gender, sexual orientation, culture, race, faith, belief, physical, sensory or learning disability, mental or physical health, age, social or marital status, gender reassignment, pregnancy and maternity,
  • To ensure that no individuals or groups are denied access to services,
  • To promote diversity within a safe environment for all potential and current service users and staff, in both service delivery and employment practice,
  • To identify factors and barriers which may result in prospective or actual service users being disadvantaged either directly or indirectly,
  • To take measures to compensate for these factors and remove barriers,
  • To continue to tackle discrimination by providing accessible services and creating inclusive support environments,
  • To include assertive community outreach as part of our delivery approach, ensuring that those living in rural areas or unable to reach us are targeted and supported.

Our Associates

Our Volunteers

Our volunteers provide untiring help and support across a wide range of our operations, from office duties, to community outreach projects. We could not operate without them, in order to provide excellent service to the community and for this reason, we are highly grateful for their enthusiasm and energy.