Facebook is teaming up with London-based nonprofit Colorintech on a diversity initiative in Europe.
Colorintech said the partnership marks Facebook’s first of its kind to focus on Europe, adding that it will work with the social network’s recruiting and employer branding teams on a series of programs and events aimed at targeting professionals from underrepresented cultural and ethnic backgrounds.
The company will also work with internal teams at Facebook to help it provide more inclusive work environments for people from multiple communities and cultural backgrounds to thrive.
In turn, Facebook employees will help teach code and showcase virtual reality technology at Colorintech’s upcoming Colorcode summit, aimed at 15- to 18-year-olds from cultural and ethnic backgrounds that are underrepresented in the technology sector.
The social network will become a gold-level sponsor, joining other tech companies including Google, Box and Microsoft.
Facebook director of international diversity and inclusion Emma Cashmore said in a release, “It’s very important to us that Facebook and the tech industry as a whole welcome people from all backgrounds, with diverse experiences, perspectives and ideas, and enables them to thrive and be their authentic selves. We are so excited to work with Colorintech to build a diverse team that represents the communities we serve and to empower the next generation of leaders and entrepreneurs in Europe. This is another step in our five-year plan of creating a company where at least one-half of our workforce will come from underrepresented groups.”
Adwoa Baah, content strategist and Black@ employee resource group leader at the social network, added, “When (Colorintech co-founder Ashleigh Ainsley) spoke at our first Diversity in Tech event last year, it was clear that Facebook could really benefit from working with Colorintech. It’s great to see that this relationship with the Black@ Facebook London employee group has now blossomed into a full-blown partnership with Facebook across Europe. The work that they do to raise awareness of diversity and inclusion issues will help to bolster the efforts of Black@ and other groups that are working to make Facebook more diverse and inclusive. Their perspective, network of talent and range of tools will change the makeup of the company for the better.”
Ainsley said in the release, “For far too long, minorities have been excluded from Europe’s tech ecosystem. We are excited to embark on this partnership with an organization that truly has the scale to make a meaningful difference and connect opportunity for everyone.”
And Colorintech co-founder and chairman Dion McKenzie added, “With this partnership, Facebook is taking a bold step in its commitment to create a diverse workforce in Europe. Facebook’s impact is huge, so there is an amazing opportunity to nurture, engage and create a great workplace for BAME (black, Asian and minority ethnic) talent.”