**Please note: This is an internal COFACE expert meeting**
(meeting documents are for internal use, not for dissemination)


Diverse representation in Communication


25th February 2021


co-hosted by COFACE and UNAF Spain

The images and photos of people in any communication campaign or media affects how people think about the world, however photos barely represent the whole range of diversity in society. We don’t want this limit us and continue to ensure an adequate representation of society in our in our member’s outputs. In order to support the campaigns of COFACE and its national members, we would like to collect photos representing families in all their diversity with different colours, abilities and family types.

Societal diversity should not only be transmitted through visual materials but also through language as language similarly forms our image of society. With our members we would like to reflect on the barriers of languages as well as discuss existing and new strategies. Lastly, we will discuss future collaboration in campaigning, focusing on the question how can we link national and European campaigns?

Objectives of the webinar

  • Exchanges on different national campaigns, with a focus on Spain, to encourage learning between COFACE members on national campaigning
  • Discussion on coordinated European campaigns and projects, taking diversity (family, ethnic, disability) as a starting point, bringing members together around common projects.

Language of the meeting
English (Spanish sign language in the morning)

For COFACE and UNAF members only

Please register here to receive your individual zoom link



Morning: Virtual study visit of UNAF Spain

9.30-9.45 Introductions and overview
Background & aims of the meeting.

9.45-10.15 Introduction to UNAF: vision, goals, actions

UNAF is a pioneering NGO in Spain working to improve the rights and wellbeing of diverse families. During our more than 30 years of experience, we have promoted the visibility and rights of all types of families in Spain. Amaia Echevarría, Director of UNAF will take you through their vision and goals, and how they work to achieve them.

10.15-11.00 UNAF campaigns on Female Genital Mutilation + working with the media

Communication is key to achieve our goals, but it is also a very important tool that NGOs have to change people’s perceptions and attitudes.
Luisa Antolin, who is part of the CGS at UNAF will take you through a campaign aimed at media professionals, with the objective to show them how to use language and images when they refer to Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), in order to empower women survivors, and not stigmatize them or other migrants.

11.00-11.15 Stretching break

11.15-12.00 Diverse forms of communication: spotlight on sign language

Belén Navas and Mª Aránzazu Díaz, from UNAF member organization CNSE, the National Confederation of Deaf Persons in Spain, will discuss how recognizing diversity is an enrichening factor. Deaf people are a diverse collective, and CNSE will take us through how they address this in all their communications, with practical examples of campaigns and activities, including some they carried out during the pandemic. They will also reflect on the importance of sign language as a guarantor of rights, and how CNSE vindicate it, showcasing some recent campaigns aimed at families.

12.00-12.30 Open discussion
Members are invited to share examples, challenges, successes, questions about diverse representation in communications.

12.30-13.30 Lunch break

Afternoon: Focus on Europe

13.30-14.30 Working together for more diverse representation in communications

Introduction by Isabell Wutz, COFACE communication officer, to the idea of building an online bank of stock images to be used in communication tools (newsletter, webpages, social media, videos, etc) which represent the full diversity of society, as well as discussing diverse language is messaging and storytelling.

  • We will examine a list of existing online banks of stock images and videos (see Annex of the programme)
  • We will reflect on diversity in languages. Are there rules in some organisations? Is there a change in language in the respective countries to be more diverse and gender-neutral?
  • Can we jointly work on collecting open source photos for use by all COFACE members and partners? What platform could we use? (Flickr, Facebook, multiple platforms)

14.30-14.45 Tea/stretching break

14.45-16.00 Exchange on European and national campaigns for 2021

  • Update on national campaigns and brainstorm on bringing a European dimension: members of COFACE give a voice to families in a myriad of ways, including through different types of campaigns. Here we will update each other on the key national communication actions for this year, and also think of any joint working in the future.
  • Update on EU communication actions of COFACE in 2021. Here we will update the COFACE members on the key Communication angles and hooks for 2021 linked to international days, EU legislation and more.

16.00-16:30 Closing words and next steps


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