Hello from Fay
I am writing this month’s newsletter from my garden where I do a lot of my thinking! My recent thoughts have led me to two quite dramatic feelings: enormous pride and a sense of hope. I’ll start with the pride, because despite the relentless impact of Covid-19, our last cohort of mentees delivered a knock-out virtual charity event last week and raised over £5,000! It was incredible, a real TV broadcast-level experience, and if you were there, you’ll have seen the sensational engagement on social media.
But with this feeling of enormous pride comes a sense of hope and of responsibility. I’m sure all of you have been moved, worried or even unsure about the dramatic events that happened in the US which has been felt overwhelmingly worldwide. A lot of our industry colleagues must have felt this too, and actually never said anything for fear of “not being accepted“ or as a trouble maker. That’s really not good enough, and no-one should have to feel that way.
As an industry we can’t sit quietly about diversity and inclusion any longer and recent events have made me see, so clearly, that I can in some small way through the FF15 programme help shape the future. I am, therefore, changing things and I am starting with the announcement of my new FF15 Ambassadors. We all need to work together, collaborate and be inclusive and as I believe change starts with yourself and your sphere of influence that’s where I’ll begin!
Lots of love,
Women who inspire us with their strength, ambition and fearlessness.
Continuing with our series of FF15 Shero’s, this month we would like to introduce Amanda Maxwell.
Having known her from a young age I’ve been following her progress and we have met at events like WOW’s mass speed mentoring event, celebrating the International day of the girl. It’s great to see her success through collaboration and creativity. Here she tells us a little more about her career and her business Freelance Queens.
#FF15SOAR – A Night to Remember
#FF15Soar was the hashtag of the night…and soar they did! The annual FF15 charity event went digital this year and with over 200 guests, they put on quite the show. The Cocktail Service hit the spot with an introductory elder flower gin demo. Talks with Jennifer Davidson (a previous mentee), Keneisha Williams and Holly Moore provided the audience with amazing advice, inspiration and encouragement. And amongst all of this, the co-beneficiary charity, Girls Rock, provided performances from their best talent, including the Lips Choir and their memorable remix – genius! Well done to you all and a huge thanks to the sponsors who made it possible: Sparq, IMEX Group, and YOU Search and Select.
Fast Forward 15 announce new BAME initiative
Pioneering empowerment for women, FF15 has always had a drive for diversity in the workplace and supporting other industry initiatives that strive to do the same. So, we are delighted to announce a new role for the programme; BAME Ambassador. The first ambassadors are Priya Narain, co-founder, Event First Steps, Gabrielle Austen-Browne, events and sales manager and co-founder, Diverse Ally (both previous mentees) alongside Felicia Asiedu, content marketing manager, Cvent.
The role will be to encourage and champion women from Black and other ethnic minority communities to apply for a place on the programme as a mentee. They will also advise on any policies and procedures to ensure inclusion and assist on recruiting future suitable BAME mentors to get involved.