London-based Patchwork Hub founder and CEO, Beth Kume-Holland, was invited to a special reception at the House of Lords on Monday, to be recognised for their successes and achievements as a small business owner.
Hosted by Small Business Saturday, in partnership with the campaign’s principal supporter American Express, the event celebrated the SmallBiz100 – one hundred inspiring small businesses from all over the country that are highlighted as part of the Small Business Saturday UK campaign.
Patchwork Hub is an accessible employment platform, connecting employers to skilled professionals looking for work opportunities outside the conventional 9 to 5 office job. They were named a SmallBiz100 business in 2021, in recognition of their impressive entrepreneurial journey in the last 12 months. This has seen them become a Disability Confident Leader, helping multiple other businesses, from FTSE 100 employers through to sole traders, to make sure the ‘New Normal’ is bringing in a hidden talent pool previously excluded by inaccessible work practices. This week sees Beth and Patchwork Hub’s work being recognised across a range of fora. They were recently selected as award finalists of the 2021 RIDI Awards (Recruitment Industry Disability Initiative) in the competitive ‘Disability Specialist’ Category. While this week Patchwork Hub also received the Highly Commended award in Business Disability Forum’s Disability Smart Awards.
Bringing together entrepreneurs from this year’s SmallBiz100 line-up and those called out in 2020, the guests at the House of Lords were treated to afternoon tea overlooking the Thames. Entrepreneurs from across the country met with Small Business Minister, Paul Scully, along with enjoying the opportunity to come together for the first time since the pandemic hit.
The House of Lords event kicks off a week of celebrations ahead of Small Business Saturday, which returned this weekend (4th December) following record-breaking success last year, which saw an estimated £1.1 billion spent with small businesses on the day itself.
Now in its ninth year in the UK, Small Business Saturday celebrates small business success and encourages consumers to ‘shop local’ and support businesses in their communities. This year it is calling on the nation to share a ‘big thank you’ with small firms to recognise their vital role throughout the pandemic.
Michelle Ovens CBE, Director of Small Business Saturday UK said:
‘Hosting this special event at the House of Lords for amazing businesses like Patchwork Hub, felt like the best way to say a big thank you for their incredible effort and contribution over these past tough couple of years. They can be really proud of everything they’ve achieved, and we hope the afternoon was a positive way to draw 2021 to a close.’
Small Business Minister Paul Scully praised the business owners for their continued commitment to their communities:
“From the pubs, restaurants and shops that make our high streets tick, to leisure and personal care services – like the hairdresser who saved my post-lockdown blushes last year – small businesses are at the heart of our way of life. I urge everyone to shop safely and back their local businesses on Small Business Saturday.”
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A grassroots, not-for-profit campaign Small Business Saturday was originally founded by American Express in the U.S. in 2010. It remains the principal supporter of the campaign in the UK, as part of its ongoing support of the UK high street and commitment to encouraging consumers to shop small.
On Small Business Saturday, customers across the UK go out and support all types of small businesses, both online and in brick-and-mortar stores. Many small businesses take an active role in promoting the day by hosting events and offering promotions.
A huge wave of local events is expected across the country this weekend to support independents, as councils and community groups coincide festive markets and fun days with Small Business Saturday, as well as offering free parking in town centres.
This weekend Patchwork Hub will be celebrating Small Business Saturday by launching its new official clothing collection in collaboration with homegrown clothing label Born Anxious and MOKOM, available to buy online at mokom.co.uk/shop! Although this collection has a special place for others with lived experience of disability or chronic illness, founder Beth wanted to create items for everyone with a universal message of empowerment, kindness and sustainability.
“We’re thrilled to share that we’ll be donating a portion of the proceeds to Astriid” shared Beth, “Astriid is a likeminded charity, completely aligned in its social mission to Patchwork Hub and does amazing work helping people with long-term health issues and their carers find meaningful employment or volunteering opportunities.”
Dan Edelman from American Express said:
“It’s so important that we all continue to support our favourite independents on Small Business Saturday and beyond, and we’re proud to play our part through our own Shop Small campaign and as principal supporter of Small Business Saturday.”