“The WordPress mission to democratize publishing is quite possibly realizing something more. The philosophy behind WordPress, and its Four Freedoms, may be realizing a Fifth Freedom:
The freedom to experience a thriving community truly open to everyone through sharing of information about The WordPress Open Source Project at community events sponsored by WordPress enthusiasts.”
Thank you WordPress Community for embracing what I shared above on April 10th!
You have expressed tremendous support for the call to sponsor travel and lodging for WordCamp underrepresented/minority speakers.
My heart is filled with gratitude that hundreds of companies submitted their interests to sponsor underrepresented/diverse speakers for WordCamp US 2022. Thank you @aaroncampbell @angelasjin @kdrewien @kimberlylipari for saying yes to my ask! <3
It was important to me that WCUS’ call concluded before I said more.
It has, and I am excited to share that:
The Sponsor Inclusion in Tech website will exist on GoDaddy Managed WordPress hosting. It will launch in late July 2022. The objective of the website is to connect a confirmed WordCamp underrepresented/minority speaker with a company in the WordPress ecosystem that will pay for their WordCamp travel and/or lodging.
A formal Call for Sponsors will begin in January 2023.
Companies that have expressed their desire to partner are GoDaddy, Post Status, Yoast and MasterWP. Thank you @awarner20 @corymiller303 @lindseyanne @robhoward @tacoverdo! <3. The website will launch with their sponsorship opportunities.
The objective of Sponsor Inclusion in Tech is that:
Underrepresented/Minority speakers who complete the steps outlined in this post will have the opportunity to pair with these companies to have their expenses covered.
Lodging will be sponsored: The speaker will check in at their hotel with confirmation that their stay has been paid for in advance, or they will meet a company representative who will pay at the time of their arrival.
Travel will be sponsored: The speaker will receive their boarding pass/ticket in advance of their travel date where possible. In advance of travel is dependent on a company’s purchasing policies/procedures. Reimbursing tickets purchased would be another option.
Sign-up for Sponsorship here: https://forms.gle/TkPKwrhsbcsv3Vnb9
Sponsor Inclusion in Tech
Underrepresented/Minority Speaker Website Registration
– [ ] Join the Under Represented in Tech website
– [ ] Complete #WPDiversity – The Diverse Speaker Workshop
– [ ] Seek out mentorship by presenting at a WordPress Meetup after completing the #DiverseSpeaker Training Program
– [ ] Register on the Sponsor Inclusion in Tech website hosted by GoDaddy after completing all these steps to be entered into a blind sponsorship selection process.
– [ ] Participate in vetting process [verification you completed all steps for registration]
– [ ] Opt in to list your year of participation in a Sponsor Inclusion in Tech public facing document featuring Speakers and Sponsors.
WordCamp Programming Teams play an essential role in this. Publishing the WordCamp schedule of speakers confirms that the booking process can begin.
What to Expect in 2022
Opening the formal call for Sponsors in 2023 will provide me the pace I need to lay the foundation to scale this. The next 6 months will provide time to trip plan with vetted speakers, to understand the requirements of sponsorship partners, it will help automate the speaker registration process, allow time to formalize the vetting process with the co-founders of Underrepresented in Tech and the WP Diversity Program. Finally, it will assist with syncing with Meetup Organizers and WordCamp programming teams.
Those who know me as a Meetup and WordCamp Organizer are aware that I work full time outside of the WordPress ecosystem. This fits into my WordPress contributions and that means this work will occur async outside of my workday at MDOT. I will continue to blog at major milestones. Thank you for understanding that the foundation for this to be successful requires time to build.
(May 10, 2022 @ 13:20:56)