This is Aneela McKenna. She’s been working as an equality, diversity, inclusion (EDI) & wellbeing professional for over 20 years supporting businesses and organisations to develop inclusive practices where everyone can contribute and participate. She specialises in the design of bespoke training and innovative solutions to bring out diverse perspectives, new ideas and fresh thinking.
Her dedication to equality is reflected in her personal, academic and professional achievements. She is an expert in her field and a professional mountain bike guide & coach who’s worked in cycling and outdoors for over a decade. Combining this with a lifetime in the EDI field, Aneela’s uniquely placed to offer an original approach to delivery for clients across all sectors.
The Ordnance Survey consumer team had a fantastic and thought provoking talk from Aneela on diversity. Her talk helped us to reflect on building diversity into our thinking, to help us engage more effectively with our customers and with colleagues. I would thoroughly recommend Aneela to anyone who is looking to build their understanding of diversity in the outdoors. I have already put Aneela forward as an ideal speaker for a major outdoor trade conference later this year." Nick Giles, Managing Director
Some recent projects!
Be a Diversity and Inclusion Champion
A toolkit for leaders
Cycling UK is a national cycling body and has over 200 cycling groups affiliated with it across the UK. Their goal was to create a new D&I champion role within their clubs. Aneela designed a toolkit for leaders setting out the role of the champion to support Cycling UK's commitment to increasing diversity. This was followed up with a workshop facilitated by Aneela showcasing the benefits to having this influential role within a cycling group. A number of their clubs now have diversity champions leading the way.
An introduction to Diversity and Inclusion - a CPD module
The Association of Mountaineering Instructors is the representative body for professional qualified mountaineering and climbing instructors in the UK and Ireland. With the impact of Black Lives Matter, they have been concerned about the lack of diversity in both their membership and in the participation in the outdoors. To address this, their aim was to upskill their members on diversity and inclusion focusing on inclusive leadership, collaboration and empowerment. Aneela is currently delivering a 2 part CPD module for AMI members. Members have since been using positive action approaches to target people from diverse backgrounds.
A toolkit for the cycling trade
When Black Lives Matter became a global phenomenon in June 2019, Singletrack Magazine were quick to respond. They wanted to develop a toolkit for the cycle trade through their Singletrack trade division to help raise awareness of the lack of diversity in cycling and provide practical tools to retailers on how to actively build diversity into their working practices. The toolkit was created as a video - a conversation piece between ourselves and Singletrack exploring the important issues Black Lives matter had brought to light in the cycle industry. This has led to an increased commitment from businesses to take steps to address the lack of diversity.
Bothy Bikepacking for Young Girls
A leadership programme for young girls
This life skills and leadership programme is aimed at young girls between the ages of 9-16 to help build resiliences and confidence through mountain biking. In 2019, we worked with KICC, a local cycling club and a secondary school to target young girls to participate in a three month programme; using the bike as a vehicle to experience a range of activities including an overnight MTB adventure. By evaluating the process through personal reflection, the programme led to an increased confidence in the girls through building new friendships and learning to be self sufficient on a bike. This programme can also be aimed at adults.