The X Factor That Made Me a Finalist

May 31, 2021

If I’d been told in early 2020 that I would be a finalist for Female Innovator of the Year 2021, I’d have said it was unbelievable. But reaching the final is not fake news. For Nomad HR and Recruitment, it’s demonstrated that ‘giving something back’ through social enterprise can be rewarding in many ways.

At a time when so many young people have faced unprecedented challenges and disappointments due to the pandemic, Nomad has been dedicated to making a difference to the lives of those who need a helping hand. It’s the firm’s own ‘X Factor’ which has resulted in a real-life X Factor shortlist for me.

Initially, I was one of ten candidates nominated for the award in a scheme run by the not for profit organisation The Technology Supply Chain.

This a Community Interest Company working with universities, businesses and local enterprise partnerships to encourage growth and innovation. Just like the famous TV talent contest, this competition involved a public vote.

Having gained enough support to survive the category’s first round, I was delighted to be one of four finalists. I’ve been invited to record a short presentation which will be shown to an expert panel.  As I write, the outcome has still to be decided and will be announced at a special event on 1st July.

Social Enterprise

I’m not entirely sure who nominated me, but their official submission recognised how I’d adapted my professional ethics to help the employment prospects of young people adversely affected by the pandemic. During the first lockdown, I set up Nomad as a social enterprise, with the aim of giving something back to the communities I work with.  

As a former youth worker, I’m passionate about supporting vulnerable young people to develop and find their potential. I’m a trustee of the charity Positive Youth Foundation which aims to boost personal development through areas like education, employment and the arts.  

Sometimes it’s the small, practical steps that can make all the difference. For example, working with other support organisations, I helped a homeless young man with his CV after he secured a home address. We worked together to get his National Insurance number so he could then apply to potential employers and, with the right support and guidance, he has now started a new job.

Homeless Charity

I've created a support fund with a local homeless charity, Doorway to help pay for items which are a barrier to employment. This money will assist young people with the practical help needed to secure a job, such as paying for interview clothes, safety boots or a bus pass or bike to get to work until the first wage slip arrives.                     

Over the last twelve months I’m very proud to have helped many young people find jobs. That’s  involved building meaningful relationships with them, understanding their situations and how they view the world. As a mentor at two local job centres, I’ve organised coaching around CV writing, as well as signposting them to job and training opportunities and preparing for interviews.  

As we move out of lockdown and start to rebuild services for young people, there are unprecedented challenges ahead. Social enterprises have never been more important than they are now. According to the website there are more than 100,000 social enterprises throughout the country, contributing £60 billion to the economy.

Nomad is one of them. So, if you know a young person who would benefit from the type of free help which Nomad could give them, please get in touch.


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