Wednesday, 12 June 2019

Businesses asked to Give an Hour to inspire young people

Campaign launched to encourage employers to engage with young people

Liverpool City Region Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) has launched a new campaign to encourage businesses to make a difference to the futures of young people in Liverpool City Region.

The Give an Hour campaign calls for employers and employees to offer an hour of their time to help young people prepare for the fast-changing world of work.

The initiative- run jointly by Liverpool City Region LEP and The Careers & Enterprise Company - highlights that in as little as one hour, organisations can help to transform a young person’s future by bringing to life different career opportunities and providing insight about the skills young people need to be work-ready and successful in the workplace.

Sally Beevers, Careers Hub Lead at the Liverpool City Region LEP said: “This is a great opportunity for local business to help support our young people to establish their career path, prepare them for the world of work and raise their aspirations. Having local businesses directly involved in careers education lessons brings local job opportunities to life and exposes career options they may have not otherwise considered.”

Sally added: “I would encourage all employers and employees in the City Region to support this campaign - you could be the person who changes the life of a young person, just by showing them what is possible.”

The Give an Hour campaign emphasises the importance of tapping into the career opportunities, skills and knowledge of businesses. Activities can include interview practice, mentoring or working with a teacher to bring a lesson to life.

Evidence shows that regular and meaningful engagement with employers while at school can significantly increase young people’s employment prospects and future earnings.*

Claudia Harris, Chief Executive of The Careers & Enterprise Company, said: “We know that hardworking small business really want to support young people in their local community but finding the time can be difficult.

There are many ways to make a difference to a young person’s future – and with as little as one hour these dynamic small firms can help a young person discover more about the world of work and open up career paths they didn’t even know existed.”

Employers of all shapes and sizes are encouraged to visit to find out more and register to support a school or college in their area.

Thursday, 6 June 2019

Wirral Chamber help AJ & Friends get their business off the ground

Our Enterprise Hub partners at Wirral Chamber have been working with Beverley Williams to launch AJ & Friends - a domiciliary care provider for children with additional needs. Following her experiences with her own son, AJ, Beverley founded AJ & Friends out of the need for high quality support for families like her own. Working with business advisor Paul Rittenberg, Beverley got to grips with the practicalities of accountancy, bookkeeping and business planning, as well as core skills around marketing and social media.

Watch what happened when Paul caught up with Beverley about her business start-up journey...

Or you can watch the video on YouTube, here.

For more information about the support available from Enterprise Hub please contact 0151 706 8113 or

Natasha Whips Up Gluten-Free Goodness for Liverpool with The Gildergreen

Having lived a gluten-free lifestyle for five years, Natasha wanted to use her passion for baking to show people that eating gluten-free doesn’t have to compromise on taste and quality. 

Natasha inherited a love for baking cakes through her mum and grandparents, but a change in diet meant that she had to rethink how she prepared food and the ingredients she so often used: “I started to research the science behind gluten and what steps you had to take to recreate the properties. I experimented with my own flour mixes and eventually started to make delicious cakes again.”

Feeling unhappy in her office job and with the support of her family, Natasha decided that setting up a business was now or never.

The business-planning process made Natasha feel slightly overwhelmed, but after contacting The Women’s Organisation, Business Adviser Jo Mountfort helped to simplify the process and break it down into small tasks: “I started to feel really excited, motivated and believed that I really could do this.”

Jo helped Natasha to streamline her idea through regular meetings and access to training and courses: “Enterprise Hub has provided me with countless resources, spreadsheets and tools. Jo has been incredibly helpful, I come out of every meeting feeling empowered”.

To read the full case study, head to The Women's Organisation's blog page here:

Tuesday, 4 June 2019

From corporate to conscious: how Enterprise Hub helped Laurie Stewart leave behind her corporate roots and develop a conscious fashion platform

Leaving behind a ten-year career working with some of the fashion industry’s biggest brands, Laurie Stewart hasn’t looked back. Now focusing on her new online platform for conscious fashion with business partner Eva Makin, this conscious pair needed help to grow their new venture.

Having recently completed Enterprise Hub’s business growth programme, we caught up with co-founder Laurie to find out where Mindless Mag’s journey began and how things are going so far…

Laurie Stewart, Co-Founder of Mindless Mag
Sitting down with Laurie, one thing is immediately clear: her passion for conscious fashion and conscious living. And it’s this passion which we think has supercharged growth for Mindless Mag - already gaining international interest just six months into the venture.

If you haven’t come across it already, Mindless Mag is an online storytelling platform for conscious fashion. Laurie explains that the aim was to create a platform for people to voice their opinions and exercise their thoughts on the world of conscious fashion - no matter what their writing ability. More than that, Mindless Mag offers the opportunity for its community to use writing as a powerful tool with the potential to act as a therapy and creative outlet.

Each month, the creative minds behind the platform – Laurie and Eva - put forward a theme or topic for discussion that month. From the perils of fast fashion to the effects of the industry on our mental health. Writers can then pen their responses and send their contributions in to be published online.

Just six months in, Mindless Mag is already receiving worldwide attention. With contributions arriving from as far as Australia and the US each month.

Not just confined to the online world, regular writing workshops and weekly meet-ups are creating a community of conscious thinkers and writers right here in Liverpool.

So, where did it all begin?

Laurie tells us that 10 years working in the fashion industry took her around the world, visiting factories and developing the supply chains for some of the UK’s biggest companies – Shop Direct, New Balance and L’OrĂ©al to name but a few.

This time last year a big promotion landed on Laurie’s desk with the opportunity to up sticks and move to Hong Kong. Leaping at the opportunity, Laurie gave notice on her apartment and put plans in place to make the move. After weeks of delays and uncertainty, the funding for the project unfortunately fell through and the move was off the table for Laurie.

Faced with the prospect of returning to her normal 9-5 and with a new fire in her belly, Laurie handed in her notice and packed up to go travelling where she found a new pace of life and explored conscious living while spending time with monks in Menorca.

And so, her journey from corporate to conscious began…

Laurie spent some of her time penning a new blog - All my Heroes are Weirdos – and an old friend, Eva Makin, soon got in touch. Laurie explains that Eva was a champion of her work from day one and it wasn’t long before a collaboration was underway.

With Eva’s background as a writer, mixed with Laurie’s strategy and industry experience, Mindless Mag was the natural progression for the pair and the platform officially launched in January 2019.

Laurie explains that the first three months in business were dedicated to streamlining the platform and finding their niche in the conscious fashion industry (having originally intended to be all things conscious).

It wasn’t long before their online following was ballooning.

Coming to the Enterprise Hub for practical support in putting their plans for growth into action, Laurie and Eva were set up with business advisor Claire Pedersen. Meeting with Claire on a regular basis and attending various training and courses, the pair soon had a stellar strategy in place for developing the concept and looking at ways of monetising the platform.

Laurie says: “My business advisor Claire was very knowledgeable and really honed in on the issues which were relevant to our business. She really listened to what we were saying and helped us come up with solutions to help develop and grow our business. We attended some of the business growth courses too and the balance of interaction and information throughout these was really helpful”.

With exciting plans and collaborations in the pipeline, attention is now focused on building the Mindless Mag brand and working on the ever-growing following. While there is still plenty more work to do here, Laurie tells us that its been a heart-warming experience in these early stages to see people taking the time to contribute and get involved with their vision.

And the best thing about being self-employed for Laurie? She tells us it’s the freedom, the quick reaction times and the opportunity to try and fail fast which give her the ability to keep business fresh. Not to mention, no more hierarchies and plenty of opportunities to meet likeminded people.

July 2019: Finders Keepers

If you’d like to find out more about the world of conscious fashion then next month is the perfect time to get involved as Mindless Mag launches its ‘Finders Keepers’ campaign.
‘Finders Keepers’ is a second-hand clothing drive to promote conscious fashion and challenge fast-fashion culture. In conjunction with Liverpool’s best loved second-hand stores and charity shops, the campaign will send its followers on a month-long treasure hunt across the city to find a second-hand treasure each day which will be theirs to keep for free.

To find out how to get involved with the campaign you can visit the Mindless Mag website and watch this space for more details... 

You can find Mindless Mag on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram or get in touch via to find out more. 

To find out more about Laurie's personal journey, head over to her blog 'All My Heroes are Weirdos' by clicking here

For more information about the support available from Enterprise Hub please contact 0151 706 8113 or