Celebrating and Honoring Cultural Diversity

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Celebrating representation and diversity at a company can take on many different forms. After our merger with WizeHive last fall, the Bright Funds team was excited to learn about WizeHive’s Cultural Celebration Day (CCD). This is a day-long event with multiple different informative sessions that feature presentations from employees across the company sharing about their culture. On April 7th, our team participated in the second annual Cultural Celebration Day! 

Why and how WizeHive started the annual Cultural Celebration Day

Cultural Celebration Day was the product of many helpful conversations from WizeHive’s internal DEI meetings. Mallory Allen, Support Specialist and DEI Lead, shared, “The idea of CCD came to be during one of our internal DEI meetings in which we asked team members what they wanted to see be a part of our company culture. We had a great long list of new things to look at and implement, and decided one thing we wanted to try and bring in was an event where we could all come together to learn more and appreciate one another’s culture.”

Deepening relationships, even with a remote team

Creating DEI events are a great way to cultivate unity amongst a team, but we recognized that it is important to understand our work environment and the desires of our employees when developing new DEI initiatives. The WizeHive DEI team desired to create the space to have a fun and informative shared experience together, and they prioritized employee input when forming the idea for the event.  

“The reason CCD has been effective is because it was built by our employees, for our employees. They are the heart and soul of the company. This was in mind when the DEI committee began planning how exactly we wanted to pull off a virtual one-day event that had so much importance and significance to us all. We took in a great deal of consideration from each and every employee when it came down to what the topic presentation selections would be,  who wanted to help plan and take more of a leadership role,” said Allen.

Recapping the day

Though this was the second year for the event, it still took a few months of planning led by our Culture Crew, to make sure the day ran smoothly. It was important to the planning team that agendas were set in advance, technology was working properly, and that everyone had as much fun as possible! 

The day kicked off with brief intros from CEO Carl Guarino, Chief of Product, Strategy and CSR Operations Srinagesh Vitthanala, and CTO Ravindar Gujral, who highlighted the importance of this day to them individually and to the organization. It was a really special time to reflect and celebrate all the diversity represented amongst our team! From there the day moved onto a variety of presentations from staff members, including:

  • Recipes & fun food facts
  • Language learning: Swahili & Tlingit
  • Music & art from around the world
  • Mythology, folklore & superstition
  • A culture showcase panel discussion

To close out the day we had an exciting closing ceremony to honor the presenters and participants through a series of raffles in which the winners received gift cards and giving credits that can be donated to nonprofits of their choice through our Bright Funds platform. We made sure to commemorate the day with an awesome Team Cookbook full of team recipe submissions and also a curated Spotify playlist featuring music that was shared throughout the event.

Conclusion

While there are so many beautiful, fun components of Cultural Celebration Day at WizeHive, one of the most important items is the opportunity to understand and grow in unity with our peers. If you’re looking to organize a similar event, Allen has some guidance to share: 

“[My suggestion] would be to ask yourself, who is this for and what does it mean? DEI is important to all of us and there is a lot of trial and error to see what works best for your company, especially when it comes to actually listening to your employees. And although this event is held over one day and can be considered a small step towards bigger change, sometimes these small steps can make a significant difference in getting to the change we need in helping employees appreciate one another and feel included.”

You may also be interested in downloading our Virtual Volunteer Toolkit which has other DEI and Employee Engagement ideas.

Check out some photos from Cultural Celebration Day 2022!

Bright Funds

Bright Funds