Kavita Hansla led the UK Government’s first independent film poetry project following National Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) week across October to November 2017. This was following her sharing her original poem on D&I in the Civil Service with Sir Jeremy Heywood, which he liked and wished to share on Twitter.
Having coordinated 30 cross-government staff, sourced external filming and audio equipment and self-taught editing, Kavita single-handedly produced the poetry video with subtitles throughout and sign language at a section to ensure all-audience accessibility. She also wrote a blog linking this video to the Civil Service D&I Strategy which Jeremy Heywood enthusiastically supported to be published on the Civil Service Blog platform “as an inspiring example of what the organisation is working to achieve.”
The impact of this was three-fold:
Firstly, working with people that were so diverse Kavita had demonstrated supreme role model behaviour by empowering and bringing a voice to people from varied backgrounds and circumstances, particular underrepresented groups. This was reflected in feedback by volunteers involved and SCS across government.
Secondly, Sir Jeremy Heywood tweeted the video which received over 3,400 views and over 40 retweets across Whitehall and wider. The blog alone received over 40 comments with Simon Holder, Cabinet Office Senior Campaign Manager, stating that this project had received one of the most positive responses on the Civil Service blog platform yet.This was also picked up in wider outside government media, where articles were written in follow-up of my quotes about how the Civil Service now has so many more women being employed.
Thirdly, the video and blog was picked up internationally as it was featured in public servant company Apolitical’s global newsletter to over 100 countries, reflectively positively on UK Government’s diversity and inclusion efforts.