To celebrate diversity and inclusion, graphic design and visual communications company Canva released a collection of colorful Pride templates that can be used in social media posts, covers, and stories across platforms. 

Following a Filipino retro style, the collection allows Filipinos to “design with pride” this Pride month. 

Canva senior brand designer and university lecturer Joan Eunice “Yuni” Y. Lao shared that in addition to bringing ideas to life through design applications, she advocates for human rights and equality for different gender expressions and identities. 

“I try to impart to my students that the space I make for them is something they can have even outside the classroom,” said Ms. Lao, who is herself bisexual. 

She said that talking about her sexuality and encouraging students to propose topics they care about helps her class in Ateneo de Manila University feel more comfortable. 

Canva Philippines, which has a workforce over 700 strong, requires “listening, understanding, and constantly evolving a company’s processes to ensure that every employee feels included.”

“Gender rights, specifically LGBTQIA+, rights, is something I feel extremely passionate about. Growing up as a closeted gay kid, I’ve experienced being teased and bullied about my self-expression,” said Geryl V. Minguillo, a designer in Canva University, the company’s learning and development unit, 

Through diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) sessions, he educates fellow Canva employees on respectful and nondiscriminatory language, including the use of preferred pronouns. 

This doesn’t just benefit LGBTQ+ themselves, but everyone’s ability to do their best work, added Yani Hornilla-Donato, Canva Philippines’ country manager.  

“Whether they’re advocating for an organization or want to educate others about gender equality, we aim to provide them with an environment where they feel welcomed and appreciated,” she said. 

Canva has also invested in Textio, a tool that assesses the use of inclusive languages for job ads.  

The graphic design company is one of many in the tech space that aims to lead in setting inclusive policies. — Brontë H. Lacsamana