Explainer: Gender inclusion and equity questions

June 28, 2023
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In the ‘Impact’ section of our Content and Development & Operations application grant forms, we ask a series of questions about gender inclusion and equity. Sometimes applicants find these questions confusing or challenging so we hope the following will help clarify why we are asking them, how you can answer them well and improve your chances of success.

The questions in our forms include:

  • How do you plan to address any gender imbalances at your organisation?
  • How will you engage people of different genders in your activities?
  • How will you measure the success of your gender inclusion and equity strategies?

We also ask questions about the number of female and gender diverse people on your Board, Committees and within your volunteers.

Why do we ask questions about gender?

Supporting diverse communities sits at the heart of the CBF. Unfortunately, women are underrepresented in community media, accounting for only 42% of paid staff and 41% of volunteers*. We have a responsibility to invest our grants in projects and organisations that will help bridge this gap.

We want community media organisations to think about how to address gender imbalance and diversify gender representation at their station – e.g. through volunteer participation (presenters, committees, Board members) or through producing and broadcasting gender diverse content.

Increasing the number of women and gender diverse people you have at your station helps to bring different perspectives and can diversify audiences. For the people involved, it can be life-changing.

* CBAA 2017 Financial Health of Community Radio Survey Report

Gender at your organisation

If there is a gender imbalance at your organisation, please don’t be reluctant to share this information. You won’t be marked down because of it. When our Grant Assessors read your application, your insights into gender balance will help them understand the problem and the steps you are taking to address it.

On the other hand, if you believe there is no gender imbalance within your organisation, explain why and how you plan to continue to maintain and manage your gender balance. Pointing out policies you have in this area is a great place to start.

If we receive two very similar applications and one can demonstrate a commitment to increasing the involvement of women or maintain gender equity, that organisation is more likely to receive our grant. We will invest funds where we can have the greatest positive impact.

Example answers

Organisations that receive high assessment scores against the gender questions demonstrate a strong understanding of gender equity and a plan to maintain or improve gender balance.

Strong sample responses include:

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Example 1: How do you plan to address any gender imbalances at your organisation?

Over the past three years, our station has made significant inroads to address gender bias in classical music by initiating:

  • A Women In Music Committee
  • Programming a three-night festival of women composers
  • Making the month of March a time to explore and broadcast women composers
  • International Women’s Day broadcast is 24-hours of works composed by women
  • Our board has increased its female representation recently with the loss of four female board members over the past few years.

White tick on green circle backgroundExample 2: How will you engage people of different genders in your activities?

Gender equity is important to the station in all levels of governance, in equal representation on-air and in production and in the station’s promotions. The station has ensured that all presenter training includes equal numbers of male and female trainees, that across the station’s volunteer working groups and governance committees that females are equally represented. Our station is monitoring the voice talent used for all station promotions and sponsorship messages. Furthermore, the images of the station on our website and social media will include an equal gender balance and diversity indicative of the station’s commitments.

White tick on green circle backgroundExample 3: How will you measure the success of your gender inclusion and equity strategies?

Our station will monitor the number of female voices through The Broadcast Taskforce Working Group. All ongoing projects will undergo proposal assessments to ensure an even ratio of gender inclusion and will be reflective of the current diverse artist/arts worker representation within the sector, including representation of the LGBTQIA+ community.

Get inspired

View a selection of programs we have previously funded focused on gender equality.

Need more help?

We sometimes hear from applicants that they don’t feel comfortable asking people involved at their organisation if they identify as gender diverse. We encourage you to get in touch with your local LGBTIQA+ community organisations and networks or access online resources such as Guidance: Gender and Sexuality Inclusive Language for survey questions for more information about how to best go about this.

Our Grants Support Team are also happy to guide you through completing this section (and any others) in our application form.