We have updated our Privacy Policy Please take a moment to review it. By continuing to use this site, you agree to the terms of our updated Privacy Policy.

Hachette UK joins forces with Harper Collins and Penguin Random House UK to celebrate Black History Month

Hachette UK’s Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) employee network, THRIVE, is joining forces with the BAME employee networks at HarperCollins (Elevate) and Penguin Random House UK (Colour[Full]) for the first time, to hold a publishing-wide wellbeing event on Thursday 15th October to mark Black History Month.


The virtual webinar, which takes place on Thursday 15th October from 6:30 – 8pm, is being hosted jointly by the publishers in partnership with the charity Black Minds Matter UK, which connects Black individuals and families with free mental health services. The event is one of several that THRIVE is hosting for Black History Month and forms part of an ongoing programme of diversity and inclusion initiatives at Hachette UK known as Changing the Story.


The webinar will offer places to Black professionals in UK publishing and will be chaired by Agnes Mwakatuma, founder of Black Minds Matter UK. It will discuss how collective trauma can present itself in the workplace, micro-aggressions, the impact of George Floyd’s death on Black Lives Matter and how to look after your mental health. Agnes will also be joined by two licensed therapists, who will be available to offer advice to Black publishing staff on how to look after their mental health in the workplace and prioritise their wellbeing. Attendees will be asked to donate to Black Minds Matter UK when they book their tickets.


Ebyan Egal and Joelyn Rolston-Esdelle, co-chairs of THRIVE, commented: “We’re incredibly excited to be partnering with our fellow network chairs at Elevate and Colour[Full] to host this session with Black Minds Matter UK. With World Mental Health day taking place during Black History Month and given the traumatic events of this year, we felt it pertinent to organise a workshop that focuses on mental health and wellbeing for our Black colleagues across the industry.”


Jamie Hodder-Williams, CEO of Hodder & Stoughton, a division of Hachette UK, and Executive Sponsor of THRIVE, said: “Our Thrive Network have put together an inspirational series of events for Black History Month. Supporting the wellbeing of our Black colleagues has never been more important and we’re delighted to be working with networks across the industry to partner with Black Minds Matter UK for this timely workshop. I hope it is the start of many future collaborations.”


Simon Dowson-Collins, General Counsel and Company Secretary at HarperCollins and Executive Sponsor of Elevate, said: “We’re delighted to be working with two other fantastic networks on a subject that affects all our businesses – the wellbeing of our staff. It is fantastic that, during Black History Month, we are able to work with Black Minds Matter UK to offer our Black employees access to what promises to be a fascinating and important session.”


Rebecca Sinclair, Brand and Communications Director at Penguin Random House UK and sponsor of Colour[full], added: “This is a meaningful example of our industry coming together to share resources, networks and advice in support of an important priority: the wellbeing and mental health of our Black colleagues. We’re excited to be teaming up with THRIVE and Elevate for this webinar and hope it’s a partnership which can extend far beyond Black History Month.”


THRIVE will also be hosting several other panels for Black History Month:

  • Black Love (14th October) – panellists include Sareeta Domingo, Bolu Babalola and Elizabeth Okoh
  • Black Activism (21st October) – panellists include Arike Oke, Alexandra Wilson, Patrick Vernon and Dr Shola Mos-Shogbamimu
  • Publishers and Agents of Tomorrow (29th October) – panellists include Sharmaine Lovegrove, Kwaku Osei Africa, Nelle Edwards and Silé Edwards

For more information, please follow THRIVE on twitter @THRIVEHachette or visit: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/d/online/%23hukblackhistorymonth/?page=1




Editors Notes



THRIVE is Hachette UK’s Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Employee Network. We are an inclusive network open to all employees of Hachette UK. We aim to build people up (by widening the representation of BAME employees and authors at Hachette UK), bring people together, and build cultural awareness. By empowering discussion at Hachette UK, we aim to inform decision-making and enrich our publishing.

Follow us on Twitter @THRIVEhachette to see what we’re getting up to, or alternatively email us at THRIVE@hachette.co.uk.


About Elevate:

Formed in 2019, Elevate (HarperCollins) is an employee-led network for BAME HarperCollins staff, formed with the goal of creating a supportive environment for BAME employees and advocate diversity and inclusion in the publishing.

You can reach us on elevate@harpercollins.co.uk or follow us:

Twitter – ElevateHC_

Insta – elevatehc_


About Colour[Full]:

Colour[Full] was formed in 2018 as a network to support and connect ‘BAME’ staff within PRH. We organise events for staff to promote our diverse authors, provide a community space for our members to be themselves, and work with the company leaders on how to promote diversity and inclusion, through the ‘Show Our Workings’ scheme.

You can reach us at WeAreColourFull@penguinrandomhouse.co.uk