Jasmin Bakhre is the Founder and CEO of Women with Wings CIC based in Little Hulton. She has been nominated by Nickala Torkington of Flourish CIC. Jasmin says “Whilst starting up my cake business, I faced some challenges that are shared with women whose first language is not English.
With language as a barrier, you are less confident to seek support or to articulate what you are trying to achieve in life. This can reduce the chances of successfully starting a business, as well as the confidence needed to keep going.
The local housing association provides business start-up advice and support. However, many women and particularly migrant women did not complete the start-up programme because of limiting self-beliefs, childcare issues, and the cost of travel to the training centre.
I looked at why these women are not completing the course. Out of this came the understanding that what was stopping them was their mindset and that they needed to change this before they went on to more formal training. This is the starting point for their journey of turning ideas into an enterprise.”
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Who have you helped/who will you help?
“With the above in mind, I started Women with Wings group in March 2017. It is a CIC that helps to reduce barriers to enable women to take their first steps towards employment, self-employment, or training.
I set up the group to help break down those barriers that stop women from improving their lives, increasing their confidence, and reducing isolation. The aim is to inspire, empower, motivate, and support women to engage in employment, self-employment, or education.
The group was developed primarily with the aim of helping women that don’t speak English as their first language who face challenges such as childcare, low self-esteem, and confidence, to join together and share their enterprise ideas.
At Women with Wings, we support all women, especially those for whom English is not their first language. Since we started, we have supported 120 women to take their first steps towards improving their lives. Out of those, 60 have started their business or are building their business, 25 have secured paid work or volunteering, and 35 have taken an education route to improve their lives.”
“Many women in the community previously didn’t engage in programmes that would improve their lives and remove them from their comfort zone. Along with the research outcomes, I held a group of like-minded women to discuss the programme before I created it.
From this, I developed workshops and training which include therapy, confidence building, motivation to support, self-belief and mindset development. I also give a vision to these women to be able to take their first steps to engage in further programs. Once individuals gained confidence, they could better articulate their ideas, which in turn would enable them to engage with multiple organisations that provide ongoing support and resources.”
What have you learned? Any challenges?
“The challenges I’m facing is that many women have low self-esteem and don’t believe in themselves and this is due to the system and stigma that women’s place is the house and look after their family.
Also, since we don’t get many opportunities to show our talent, finance is the biggest factor. Therefore, women that do gain an opportunity such as with Women with Wings, should use this chance and create a platform for many more women to have an opportunity to thrive and flourish.”
“My plan is to use my platform and voice to reach out to as many women out there as possible so they can get an opportunity to improve their lives and their family’s lives. I would like to expand nationally to support many women.”
What advice, contacts, or resources would help her?
“I would like to connect with many organisations and networks to help me do my work of passion which is to support women to improve their lives.”
Why we’re sharing these stories
Each year, an individual or organisation from each of our five categories plus one exceptional judges’ choice individual is recognised at our annual Igniting Inspiration celebration event.
We publish each and every nomination to raise awareness of all the positive work that goes on in the North. While, this year, our physical event had to be deferred, our campaign to spread stories of positive social impact continues – good news is needed!