Date: January 10, 2019
We are honoured to announce that HRH The Duchess of Sussex has become the Royal Patron of Smart Works. The decision reflects The Duchess’s passion in supporting women, and her commitment will help women in need across the UK.
We welcomed The Duchess to Smart Works on Thursday 10 January to meet our clients and volunteers. She heard their stories, dressed two clients and coached a client to help her start her own business. Whilst meeting with staff, clients and volunteers, The Duchess explained that “It’s not just donating your clothes and seeing where they land, it is about being part of each other’s success stories as women.”
Kate Stephens, Smart Works CEO said “We are passionate about helping women be the best that they can be. As The Duchess said today having so many other women believing in your is the piece that makes Smart Works so special. As a global campaigner for women and their rights worldwide, The Duchess will shine a light on Smart Works, enabling more women to come to our centres and get the job that will transform their lives.”
One of our clients, Sarah met with The Duchess on the visit and said “It was such a beautiful experience. I love colour and they found clothes that really represented me. It made me feel like myself again. ” Ashwak, another Smart Works client said “I got so much confidence from talking to a coach and getting that hands-on advice. She told me I had everything there; it was just a matter of reminding myself”.
The Duchess’s patronage will help to raise the profile of our 7 Smart Works centres across the UK. With her support, we are thrilled to be able to show how our service can change the course of a woman’s life. We hope The Duchess will continue to see the day to day activities at Smart Works, helping to dress and coach unemployed women for their job interviews.
We are so excited to embark on the next chapter of our Smart Works journey and we hope The Duchess’s patronage will inspire the women we serve and help them to reach for the stars.
Read more about the visit on the Royal Family website.
Watch footage from the visit on the BBC website.
Photography credit: Reuters / Clodagh Kilcoyne