Loran’s Equity & Inclusivity Advisory Group (EIAG) and the Loran team have been hard at work since our last Equity Action Plan update and we’re pleased to share our Year 2 progress with all of you.
This framework sets out the overarching beliefs, values, principles, and commitments that will guide Loran’s equity, diversity, inclusion, and anti-racism work. On an annual basis, the Foundation will develop annual action plans that will include concrete and measurable actions to make the Loran community more equitable, diverse and inclusive consistent with this framework. We acknowledge and appreciate the leadership of Black and Indigenous scholars in bringing forward their experiences and concerns to initiate and inform this work.
Loran Scholars are selected on the basis of their strength of character, their commitment to service, and their leadership potential. Our approach to assessing a student’s merit is highly contextual, in that we do not look exclusively at conventional markers of success (e.g., grades), but instead work to understand how a student has maximized the opportunities available to them and assess their future potential to create positive change. We seek students from all backgrounds who distinguish themselves through their own unique excellence and commitment to the collective good. Diversity is an essential component of excellence, and we believe that our community is strengthened through a diversity of voices, experiences and perspectives. As a foundation, we enhance Canada’s leadership ecosystem by supporting the growth and development of Loran Scholars, so that they can, in turn, invest their talents to build more just and thriving communities.
In the same way that we look for young people with the compassion to understand the needs of others, the courage to ask difficult questions, and the dedication and perseverance to work to create positive change in the world, we, as a Foundation, are committed to approaching our work as an organization with these same qualities. Centuries of white supremacy, colonialism, marginalization, oppression and discrimination based on race, religion, national or ethnic origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, family status, socio-economic status, or other personal characteristics (such as physical and/or mental abilities, rural/remote, immigration status), have created systemic barriers that make it much more difficult for students to realize their full potential. This history crosses generations and continues and persists in the present.
We acknowledge that there have been missteps, oversights, and failures in our support of young people facing systemic barriers; therefore, as a foundation, we are committed to ensuring our work does not contribute to or perpetuate structural racism and discrimination of any kind.
Our goal is to ensure Loran is a welcoming organization where individuals of all backgrounds and identities feel a sense of belonging. Recognizing this is ongoing, ever-evolving work, as we pursue this overarching goal our actions will be directed by:
- The belief that character, service and leadership manifest differently in different contexts
- A celebration of the diversity of our scholar community and recognition of the strength that diversity creates
- An appreciation of the intersectionality of scholar identities
- A recognition and affirmation of the unique relationship of Indigenous Peoples with Canada, and the importance of Truth and Reconciliation in building relationships with Indigenous youth and communities across Canada
- A long-term commitment to reducing barriers to full participation in our program so that we can deliver on our vision to inspire Loran Scholars to lead with integrity, make meaningful lifelong contributions to their communities, and build a better future for us all.
Our approach is guided by two main principles:
We see it as our responsibility, as we cultivate a community of high-potential youth and an extended network of volunteers, donors and alumni who contribute to their development, to ensure that evaluations of merit, specifically the selections of scholars based on character, service and the promise of leadership, are made through a fair and inclusive process and that anti-racism is a key element in our support of emerging leaders.
We are dedicated to taking action and as such, this framework will be used to shape and guide Loran’s annual equity, diversity, inclusion, and anti-racism action planning process. We are committed to being transparent about our efforts and progress.
This work is underpinned by six key values:
Integrity: acting ethically and with consistency to ensure fair treatment for all
Courage: taking meaningful risks in service of the greater good, and being willing to challenge the status quo
Humility: remaining open and willing to learn, seeking honest feedback, and believing in the potential for continuous improvement
Empathy: acting with thoughtfulness and appreciation for different lived experiences and perspectives
Respect: valuing difference, affirming dignity, and appreciating the strength of diversity, and the many intersections of identities that make up our communities
Trust: building relationships through honesty, mutual understanding, collaboration, openness and accountability
Through this work we envision and are committed to:
- An accessible selection process that recognizes strength of character, commitment to service, and leadership potential in all contexts
- A representative community that is inclusive, and respects diverse perspectives and voices, in which all members feel a sense of belonging
- A program that offers transformative, growth-oriented opportunities that are accessible, equitable and responsive to the needs and aspirations of a diverse group of emerging leaders
- A workplace that fosters inclusion and diversity by ensuring fair and equitable employment process for all
- Sharing our practices and participating in discussions about approaches to this work in the spirit of advancing dialogue on these issues in the context of Canadian post-secondary education and youth leadership development
- Continuous learning, growth and development in our approaches to equity, diversity, inclusion, anti-racism, and reconciliation
Last approved by the EIAG October 2021
Revised with Board and EIAG Chair input Jan 2022
Reviewed by the Board April 1, 2022