In 2016 Hungarian Business Leaders Forum and mtd Consulting and Corporate Community Association launched together the EU Diversity Charter in Hungary. 55 companies have joined the initiative so far. In October 2017 a signatory ceremony will be held for the new joining organisations.
In the framework of EU Diversity Charter Hungary Diversity Week (29 May-June 2 2017) was organised for the first time in Hungary with 32 participants (companies and other organisations). On these days, the participating companies organised programmes and events for their employees to promote and call attention to equal treatment, to openness to each other, and to the importance of acceptance.
It is a necessity for companies to know the different perspectives, experiences, lifestyles and cultures that their employees bring to the everyday life of the company. At the Diversity Week, various programmes were organised, the colourful themes affected diversity from different approaches. 6 participating organisations have not signed the Diversity Charter in Hungary yet, but they would like to join the Diversity Week.
During the Diversity Week we organised a Club Event. At the event, good practices were discussed, the values and benefits of diversity were emphasized and both professional experiences and personal impressions were highlighted at three levels: nationwide, corporate and individual. HE Isabelle Poupart Canadian ambassador to Hungary was the key-note speaker of the event. It is well known that Canada is at the forefront of acceptance, equal treatment and openness to each other. We heard great examples from the Ambassador. Our guests were Gizella Bajla (IBM Hungary) and Attila Sándor (Provident Pénzügyi Zrt.) who presented their companies’ good practices. Finally, Zsolt Orsós ROMASTER Alumni talked about his experiences in the HBLF ROMASTER - Program for the Future Roma Leaders, his studies and his career.
Examples of programmes organised by companies and organisations:
- Various games that push you out of your comfort zone:
- A Dark Room where no one could rely on their vision - in cooperation with "Láthatatlan Kiállítás – Invisible Exhibition”;
- A Labyrinth for seeking way-out without your eyesight;
- A Braille-machine to try another way of communication;
- An Audio room to experience hard of hearing;
- A real wheelchair experince with a challenge to take;
- A fragrance test to open up our senses;
- Roundtable disussions around various disabilities with our guests: Zoltán Fenyvesi "Wheelchairguy” (actor in movie Kills on Wheels), Mihály Kogon (former director of Marczibányi tér Rehabilitation Centre) and Rita Babutsan from Hungarian Academy of Sciences (Research Instutite for Linguistics);
- HR Corner to get some practical information.
- Stay connected – Events with colleagues on maternity leave
- Mummy's wellbeing toolkit: regeneration tips for your body & soul, Speaker: Viktoria Lux – IBMer on maternity leave/coach, autogenic training therapist
- HR session about returning to IBM
- Recruitment session about open jobs
- Drawing contest, topic: Road Traffic safety and diversity (transport of disabled people and wheelchair users; different generations, populations and nations travelling together)
- Presentation of children with special education needs: What is the specific meaning of special education needs? How a child with special educational needs can be diagnosed, who can or should be contacted in this case, and which expert committee can give an official opinion about it?
- Working Parents Day: Roundtable discussions, with small group interactive session conversation and health screening. A full day event to help parents and all those who are interested in creating work-life balance, creative child rearing practices (from little to adolescents), psychological counselling, or healthy nutrition.
- Workshop and Roundtable discussion on Workplace Generation Differences.
- Walk for Diversity - Walk with the colleagues on a predetermined route where everyone brought a colourful balloon symbolizing diversity. At the end of the walk they released the ball, which was also recorded by a video.
- Lean in Circle Workshop - "We have a mission to support women by creating a community where we share useful knowledge, ideas, facts and provide opportunities to organise meetings, events, and share experiences. At our events we are discussing current issues affecting the success of women.
- Roundtable discussion, workshop for single parents, how can they find and manage work - private life balance
According to the feedback we can say that every employee was happy to participate in the programmes, the companies have managed to broaden employees’ horizons and encouraged them to be more accepting. Businesses and institutions who want to show an example of social responsibility through their responsibilities start with their own employees and potential employees. Responsible employers do everything to prevent discrimination, and even actively work to make their employees aware of the recognition, understanding and effective handling of different forms of discrimination. Companies, organisations which are already members of the Diversity Charter in Hungary can encourage other organisations to deepen and declare their commitment to this extremely important social topic!
Hungarian Diversity Charter