Welcome to 2014 – some changes to the team

The DPSN team is back and ready to go for 2014 – a very happy (late) new year to everyone!

Our history

DPSN, or Diversity Promotion through Social Networking, is a project which aims to stimulate conversations about diversity, creativity and social change.  The project, run by Diversityworks Trust, began in 2009 as an online and offline peer support network.

DPSN has evolved considerably over the past five years.  In 2012 we began to increase our online presence as a recognition of the important role technology has to play in bringing together diverse communities of people, and fostering changes in attitudes around diversity, acceptance and inclusion. 

This year we’ll be continuing the official DPSN blog (more on that below).  Don’t forget, you can also like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

The team

BarbaraBarbara

Barbara has worked as Executive Assistant to Philip Patston, the Director of Diversityworks Trust, since 2010.  This year she is leaving her role to undertake a full time internship, after completing her Masters in Counselling Psychology at AUT last year.  However, she is remaining on board with Diversityworks as Project Manager for DPSN and IGODAP.

Barbara enjoys debating issues of diversity across all areas of society, but particularly in relation to the mental health sector.  In her free time, she also volunteers as a phone counsellor and mentor at Youthline.  Barbara is the main point of contact for any DPSN concerns, queries or expressions of interest in guest blogging.  You can contact her at barbara@diversitynz.com.

AnnaAnna

Anna has been involved with DPSN since the project began.  This year her role shifts to Social Media Moderator.  Anna has a physical disability, but doesn’t let it dictate her life.  However, she says, it does help to create a very solid path at times.

Anna enjoys interacting with people and sharing experiences, and finds it exciting when sharing can be helpful or inspirational.  She also works at AUT University as the Disability Student Advisor and as an Executive Advisor to the Rainbow Youth board.  Anna is an alumni of the Be.Leadership programme which she completed in 2011, its inaugural year.  You can contact Anna for any Facebook or Twitter concerns and queries at anna@diversitynz.com

SamSam

This year we welcome Sam on board, who is taking over Barbara’s role as EA and will be contributing to our DPSN blog.  Sam has previously worked with Diversityworks as the illustrator for our kids book, “My Friend is a Superhero!”, as well as designing the exhibition poster for our 100 Days Project last year.

Sam’s been drawing since he was a little girl. He wants to live in a world where all our differences, nuances, and complexities are celebrated.  As a comic artist he’s been showcased in featured in national and international publications including Gender Outlaws: The Next Generation, DUDE and Bitch Magazine. Recently, his Gender and Sexuality 101 comic was also used in the Human Rights Commission resource Born Free and Equal.  When he’s not working at Diversityworks, or drawing his autobiographical webcomic Rooster Tails, you can find him working and volunteering at mental health, disability, and social change organisations.

Our plans for 2014

This year we hope to mix things up again with a few new changes.  We’ll be featuring a regular guest blog once a month, as well as starting a new series, “5 Quick Questions with…” where we interview someone with a unique take on diversity.  We’ll also repost relevant blogs from other sites, with permission.

If you’d like to write for DPSN, or know someone you think we should contact about a blog or an interview, please email barbara@diversitynz.com

Our 2013 100 Days Project, 100 Faces of Diversity, was also one of the most successful projects DPSN has ever hosted!  This year we’d love to do it again…more info to follow when details are confirmed.

We’ve also started a blogroll featuring other sites we think are cool or interesting.  Check it out in the sidebar over on the right.

We hope that 2014 brings many more interesting conversations.  As always, please get in touch with Barbara if you have any questions, tips or want to write for us.

Until next week – the DPSN team

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