I’ve learned many things during the last few days at AdaCamp, but the notion of ‘Allies for women in tech’ – actually for anyone who might face discrimination is one of the most meaningful take-aways so far.
AdaCamp, is leading by example, featuring a ‘Main’ and ‘Allies’ Tracks :
Allies Track “is for people of any gender who are eager to support women in open tech/culture”
Just seeing that people cared enough to *attend* the Allied track felt good. Maybe, through allied efforts crap like this won’t just be something we have to suffer though. (see profile pic for context)
What does being an Ally mean? Most critically it means speaking up when you witness abuse, discrimination and cruel jokes . As a regular act in our communities it means inclusion, invitation, validation and safety.
In discussions around empowering young girls in technology, one participant called us out on always referring to ‘our daughters’, and she was right – empowering girls also means raising boys as allies. A great realization for all of us.
AdaCamp is a carefully constructed ally of everyone here. Considerations have been made for accessibility, mobility, language – for families like mine: providing childcare. Being an Ally can be hard at first and might require leaving our comfort zones, but all learning is hard …at first (ask any toddler).
Truthfully, innovation is only at a stutter until we see a balanced representation of all contributors in open communities.
Being an ally is not about political correctness it’s about valuing people.