Celebrating our third birthday: Smart Works at the House of Lords

We were delighted to celebrate our third birthday at an inspiring event on the Terrace of the House of Lords.  The evening was a wonderful chance to bring together our Smart Works family: our clients, our volunteers, our retail and corporate supporters, our referral partners, our staff and our trustees in London, Manchester, Edinburgh, Birmingham and Reading.

We are hugely grateful to Lord Darling for hosting us in the stunning Cholmondeley Room and Terrace, a magnificent setting and the perfect evening to enjoy the late summer sunshine.

Our Chair of Trustees, Juliet and Chief Executive, Kate Stephens thanked everyone for their inspiring support, without which we wouldn’t be able to provide such a transformational service.  In the three years since Smart Works was created, we have gone from one to six centres around the UK, each preparing women for interview success, and each delivering a service that works.  In each of our locations, over one in two of the women we are able to contact go on to get the job, a success rate we are incredibly proud of.

The real star of the show was our client, Juliet, who spoke about the magic of Smart Works and how her appointment marked a huge turning point in her life. Following her visit, Juliet’s confidence grew and she had a renewed sense of self-esteem, helping her to secure employment and in turn, inspire others.

We celebrated in style with our marvellous beauty partners Bobbi Brown on hand to offer guests complimentary make-up touch ups.  The buzz in the room was a fantastic testimony to the great range of support and passion that exists for our work.  Many interesting conversations took place and connections were made.  Another highlight came when our patrons, Betty Jackson and Jane Shepherdson drew the raffle prize alongside our trustee, Maggie Darling, and then led our guests in a spontaneous round of “Happy birthday to you”.

We’ve had some brilliant social media feedback, so please do chime in and add your thoughts and photographs from such a special evening, using the hashtag #smartworksbirthday.

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A huge thank you to everyone who has supported us over the last three years, and made it possible for us to help more women succeed at job interview and move on with their lives.  We love what we do at Smart Works, we love working with all our supporters and partners, and we love the possibility that lies ahead in the coming months and years as we look at how we can help more women.