The Black Lives Matter movement has provided a stark reminder of the inequalities that exist within our society today. It also demonstrated that we, UWS - as an organisation committed to equality, inclusion, equity and diversity - are falling short of where we need to be, particularly in terms of equity.

In this blog from our CEO Tim Howarth, we share how we're working to make sure that United World Schools steps up to tackling racism and inequity in the Third Sector.



The Black Lives Matter movement catalysed really important conversations at UWS – issues which require much more than a knee jerk reaction or token response.

We took time to assess our own behaviours and ask ourselves uncomfortable questions. What is clear is we can, and must, do more. We are far from perfect – we have much to learn, much to do. 

And we are learning; we are committed and we will deliver. 

Our plans are outlined below:

We want diverse teams and employees that, no matter their personal circumstances or characteristics:

  • Promote positivity
  • Have a breadth of experiences and backgrounds
  • Instil a can-do attitude in everyone

We recognise that we are falling short of this currently and that we can, and must, do more to meet this vision.

To address this, we have taken these immediate steps:

  • Engaged key stakeholders to understand UWS' approach to Diversity and Inclusion.
  • Developed a Diversity and Inclusion policy at organisation and programme level.
  • Created a Joint Consultation Committee to lead the development and delivery of the organisation’s Diversity and Inclusion agenda going forward.
  • Worked on diversifying the Board through Trustee recruitment.
  • Reviewed and improved our recruitment processes to do more to eliminate unconscious bias.
  • Reviewed how we communicate and the language we use in communication

This is only the beginning of our journey. We will continue to learn with, and from others. We are warmly welcome feedback and comments so that we can progress and learn further.

By doing so, we will commit to further changes in our organisation and shall be open and transparent with our findings as we work together to tackle injustice, racism and equity.

We will publish our commitments and changes to reinforce our accountability and transparency.

We also know we cannot address systemic racism and inequity alone. We have fantastic talent in our sector who can drive real change. We respectfully challenge partners and funders to join us and make a commitment to lasting change. 

I look forward to updating you on our progress in January 2021.

Tim Howarth | Chief Executive