24 May 2022

During our World Culture Day celebrations on 21 May 2022 which were held at our new £8.5M ‘City Gateway’ YMCA centre in Wolverhampton, we were presented with our certificate of achievement for the new international standard ISO 30415 in Human Resource Management: Diversity and Inclusion.

John Mulholland presented the award on behalf of the Centre for Assessment. He explained that YMCA Black Country were the first YMCA in the world to achieve the accreditation, and only the second organisation in the world.

The standard explores the attitudes of employers towards Diversity and Inclusion and the extent to which its systems, processes and behaviours are truly diverse and representational. Adopting the standard is an indication of an employer’s commitment to Diversity & Inclusion, which in turn generates trust. Unlike other ‘people management’ standards, ISO30415 provides a view of the organisation from both an internal staff perspective, and also from an external stakeholder perspective, such as service users, the supply chain and the broader community.

John said: “YMCA Black Country Group makes a massive contribution to the communities it serves and it was extremely rewarding to see first hand the work which it carries out and the impact has on the lives of individuals and communities. I was very impressed by the use of the App in children’s services and have recommended that others within the YMCA network use YMCA Black Country Group to benchmark and improve practice and performance. The extent to which staff are committed to the organisation and go the extra mile is particularly noteworthy. As regards staff you have a galaxy of stars and I met many who bring their diverse talents to work and put them to work”

Steve Clay CEO said “I am delighted to receive this accreditation on behalf of YMCA Black Country. Our region is made up of a rich tapestry of cultures represented by our staff and volunteers and in the many communities we serve. We are stronger through diversity and are committed to strive for an equitable and fair society for all. We are so grateful to Blantina Chipangura our Executive Head of HR & Ethos Services and our Christian Mission Co-Ordinator Phil Gray for their tireless work on this project, without whom this standard would not have come to pass.”

During the celebrations Wolverhampton’s new Mayor, Councillor Sandra Samuels OBE met with community representatives and spoke of her delight at being the first person of African-Caribbean heritage to become the Mayor of Wolverhampton in 200 years. “It was a wonderful moment to celebrate Madam Mayor’s achievement alongside that of the YMCAs” said Steve “which has a history of serving Wolverhampton since 1900”.

Alan Fraser, co-ordinator of the YMCA National EDI working group said, “YMCA is working on both a national and local level to increase equality, diversity, inclusion across the federation. As part of that commitment, we’ve been looking with the Centre for Assessment at whether ISO 30415 can provide YMCA’s with a framework to really become the best that we can be. YMCA Black Country is the first YMCA in the country to undergo a full ISO 30415 assessment and I am delighted to see that they have received the accreditation. Their work is now setting the standard for YMCAs across the whole country.”


mayor of wolverhampton and ymca staff presented with diversity and inclusion certificate

Pictured Left to Right: Blantina Chipangura (Executive Head of HR & Ethos, YMCA), Cllr Sandra Samuels OBE (Mayor of the City of Wolverhampton) Shenaz Hafeez (Youth Worker, YMCA) Steve Clay (CEO, YMCA)