Suggested timing: 20 to 30 minutes
This exercise invites you to come together with staff, volunteers and those taking part in your project to discuss and develop a ‘Commitment to Dignity’ statement that reflects your project’s particular aims and context. When finalised, you may wish to display your statement on your website, share it via social media and/or in a prominent space for everyone in your project to see. This can serve as your Code of Practice, or complement this if you already have one.
This Commitment can be used by everyone involved in the project as a guide for what should happen or how people should be treated. Your group may want to consider how the Commitment can frame your staff or volunteer inductions and/or any feedback you’re gathering on how people think the project is doing. You may wish to return to your commitment every 3-6 months to see whether anything has changed.
There are two templates included in this resource. The first template includes statements based on the Dignity in Practice Principles. The second template has space for your group to write in additional or different statements that reflect your specific project.
Note: It may be helpful to work through the other reflective exercises from the Dignity in Practice materials before developing your Commitment to Dignity statement.
For staff, volunteers and those taking part in your project to develop a collective statement on how dignity is reflected in the design and delivery of their project. This ‘Commitment to Dignity’ statement can be used to communicate your aims and principles clearly with everyone involved and to guide your project in the future.
Staff, volunteers and those taking part in your project should work together to develop a Commitment to Dignity statement that reflects your project’s particular aims and context. Click here to access a template with a suggested starting place, based on the Dignity in Practice Principles. Feel free to edit as much or as little as you want – it is important that the group feels ownership over the final ‘Commitment to Dignity’ statement.
Once you’ve worked through the template together, you may want to type up your notes and design the Commitment to be displayed in such a way that fits your project. You’re also very welcome to use the blank template provided. Click here to access it.
Discuss the statements on the example template in small groups and consider:
✚ How you’re doing this already
✚ What more you’re hoping to do
Decide as a whole group whether your project feels it can commit to these statements. If so, place your project/organisation name at the top of the page with the date and display prominently. You can use the template provided or re-design it to fit your project.
Discuss any additional statements that group members think should be included under each Dignity in Practice Principle. These should reflect any specific commitments to promoting and restoring dignity that you have or would like to have in your project. Try to be as specific and realistic as possible, but encourage participants to think about what would be possible in the future as well. If you want, you can fill in the blank template with any additional statements and display this prominently.
Statements about what you’re already doing may include actions you want to maintain: ‘We source and use high quality produce from local community gardens.’ or ‘We have a diverse steering group and encourage everyone involved in the project to share their views about what could be improved.’
Statements about what else you’re committing to may include: ‘We will work to find a venue that is easily accessible by public transportation and to people with limited mobility.’ or ‘We will increase the ways people can contribute to our project (e.g. preparing the meal, setting/clearing the tables, growing the food, playing music, paying by donation, welcoming new people at the door, etc).’