HarperCollins UK is to partner with disabled children’s charity Whizz-Kidz to provide work experience and fundraising support.
The year-long partnership will create work placements and work-skills days at HarperCollins for disabled young people, along with fundraising support.
HarperCollins’ relationship with Whizz-Kidz began in June 2015 when the charity was selected as a winner of funds as part of the News Corp Giving campaign, in which staff at HarperCollins and sister companies News UK and Dow Jones voted for the organisations they would like to receive money from a central pot of £100,000.
Since then HarperCollins has continued to develop its strategy of inclusion and diversifying the workforce – hiring interns with the BAME charity Creative Access, signing a deal with the Royal National Institute for Blind People (RNIB) to make audio titles available on the day of publication, and establishing a partnership with City Gateway to help disadvantaged and disengaged young people in London gain valuable work experience.
HarperCollins is the first publisher to choose Whizz-Kidz as its corporate charity partner.
Whizz-Kidz c.e.o., Ruth Owen OBE, said: “On behalf of everybody at Whizz-Kidz I’d like to say a huge thank you to HarperCollins UK for partnering with us as its chosen charity. We are delighted to be working together to raise funds which will enable us to provide vital mobility equipment and life skills services, giving young disabled people the freedom, independence and confidence they need to reach their true potential.”
Communications director at HarperCollins, Fiona Allen, said: “I’m incredibly excited about our new partnership with Whizz-Kidz. It is an amazing charity, and we feel proud and privileged to be supporting it through our corporate fundraising as well as working together on a brand new programme of work experience and work-skills sessions for disabled young people interested in pursuing a career in publishing.”
HarperCollins' director of people, John Athanasiou, said: “2016 is the year that we at HarperCollins will take our diversity and inclusion strategy to the next level, and I’m delighted that we’re kicking off the year with a brand new partnership with Whizz-Kidz. We want our workforce and content to reflect the diversity of our consumers, and addressing disability is obviously a key part of this. I can’t wait to meet the talented young people that we take on through this partnership, and for our culture of diversity at HarperCollins to grow even stronger in the coming year.”