Celebrating Diversity and Inclusion in Planning: The Rhema Dapaah Award
Honouring Progress and Embracing Diversity
On the 7th of December, a momentous occasion unfolded in the realm of urban planning and diversity. Ransford Stewart MBE of Stewart Management and Planning Solutions, had the honour of presenting the esteemed Rhema Dapaah Award. This award, a beacon of progress and inclusion, is awarded to an organisation demonstrating exceptional commitment to diverse and inclusive work practices, or contributing significantly to Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) in Planning.
The Winner: A Testament to Inclusive Excellence
The award, a symbol of exemplary achievement, was won by the Planning Inspectorate. They distinguished themselves amidst an impressive array of candidates, including the Planning Advisory Service, Gatenby Sanderson, AECOM, and Iceni Projects. This victory is not just a triumph for the Planning Inspectorate but a beacon for all striving for inclusivity and diversity in their organisational ethos.
A Tribute to Rhema Dapaah: A Legacy of Bravery and Hope
The award is poignantly named after Rhema Dapaah, a radiant and spirited young girl whose life, though tragically brief, continues to inspire and evoke admiration. Her parents, Benedict and Judith, exemplify courage and resilience, and the BAME Planners Network has fittingly decided to remember Rhema through this award. It stands as a perpetual memorial to her life and the indomitable spirit of her family.
A Pledge for a More Inclusive Future
I stood alongside Zaheed Chowdhury from the Planning Inspectorate, the award’s proud recipient. It was a moment of reflection and resolve. The Rhema Dapaah Award is not only about recognition; it’s a call to action for all in the planning sector. It urges us to weave the threads of diversity, equality, and inclusion into the fabric of our professional practices.
Looking Ahead: A Journey Towards Inclusivity
The journey towards a truly diverse and inclusive planning sector is ongoing. We must continually strive to emulate the standard set by the Planning Inspectorate and the other remarkable nominees. As we advance, let us carry the essence of what the Rhema Dapaah Award symbolises – a commitment to creating spaces and communities that reflect the rich tapestry of our society.