Posted: by Abby Friday, 21 December 2018 @ 15:51
Our collaboration with UK charity, Smart Works, has now ended, but we continue to love what this charity does. Sales of our 'Believe' necklace in 2018 and 2017 helped to support this wonderful charity, which promotes and supports female self-belief in the workplace.
Smart Works provides high-quality interview clothes, styling advice and interview training to women in need.
The women who are referred to Smart Works have sometimes failed at over 50 job interviews previously, or been unemployed for over a year. Despite this, 60% of the women who use Smart Works go on to succeed at their interview within a month of their visit.
This year, Smart Works celebrated some impressive milestones:
• In the last five years, they have helped 11,000 women through their dressing and interview coaching service, from our seven centres across the UK
• Over 300 skilled volunteers delivered over 15,000 appointments.
• Smart Works opened a new centre in Newcastle, enabling more women across the UK to use the service.
The impact the Smart Works makes on women’s lives can be seen in Smart Works’ client, Selina’s, story.
When Selina came to Smart Works, she had been unemployed for over a year after recovering from an injury.
As a single mum she was keen to get back into work to support her family but lacked the confidence and self-belief to make this happen.
After her visit, Selina went on to succeed at her job interview and could not be more thrilled to be back in work.
“As a single mum of a 10 year old boy, being out of work was a big deal for me.But when I came to Smart Works, I was a completely different woman to the one in the picture here. I had lost my confidence and gained a lot of weight. I was incredibly down and felt like rubbish. So when I did get a job interview, I couldn’t imagine anyone hiring me. I didn’t feel worthy of it.
The Smart Works team had me laughing from the moment I walked through the door. The dressers worked it all out for me.
They said, ‘We’ll emphasise your best bits.’
They showed me clothes I’d never thought of wearing, but when I put them on they were flattering and made me feel powerful and confident.
I could have cried when I saw myself in my outfit. I knew there and then that I looked the part.
Smart Works has made a tremendous difference to my life in this short couple of hours of being here. When I got home my son asked me 'What happened Mummy, you’re glowing?' and I said Well I’ve just been to Smart Works, they’ve dressed me up and told me I’m going to get the job. I felt like I could conquer the world."
Mantra used to support Smart Works by donating 25% of the sale of each of our 'Believe' necklaces to help fund their amazing work.