New Year is a time to focus on change, to look to the future and contemplate new beginnings and opportunities. It is a time when we challenge ourselves to be more, have more and give more; but at the conception of new ideas and directions always comes inspiration.
So before you start looking forward we thought that we would motivate you by looking back at the achievements of some incredible women who are leading the way in their chosen fields.
Business - Natalie Campbell
As Founder and CEO of A Very Good Company, Natalie's mission is clear and uncompromising, 'to create a world where people can feel good, do good and live better'. A Very Good Company is a consultancy-based firm delivering campaigns that encourage social awareness amongst large employers and has delivered programmes to the likes of Virgin Money and M&S where Natalie and her team worked on promoting health and financial awareness to over 20,000 employees.
Natalie is also hugely passionate about the status of women in business and along with the cofounders of Flock, she launched The Bad-Ass Women's Hour, a Saturday morning radio show focused on bringing ‘real women's conversations into mainstream media’. Natalie explains about her radio agenda:
“I’m more focused on the women let’s be badass’ agenda which for me isn’t just about leadership. It’s about owning who we are and really getting a sense of our power and agency. If we all focused on that, I think we’d be in leadership positions as a result.”
Campbell is also a director of ‘Kensington Creates’, a business incubator at a west London school, a trustee of UnLtd and on the board of the Big Lottery Fund. This lady certainly embodies the fierce and focused attitude we love here at ACAI.
Sports – Elinor Barker
In a world historically dominated by men, Elinor Barker is playing a huge role bringing female track cycling to the forefront of public interest following in the footsteps of Victoria Pendleton and Laura Trott.
Elinor hails from Cardiff, Wales and accidentally stumbled across cycling as an attempt to get out of her swimming lessons! This accidental stumble led to her achieving the prestigious title of Junior Time Trial World Champion in 2012, gold medalist at the 2016 Olympic Games, and most recently 2 silver medals in the 2017 UCI World Track Championships.
Nominated as Welsh Sports Personality of the Year 2017, Elinor is as busy off the track as she is on, currently studying for an Open University Degree as well as learning sign language for her role as an ambassador for the charity ‘Hearing Dogs for Deaf People.’
Ambitious, bubbly and clearly determined we are inspired by Elinor and the road map she is creating for all aspiring sports women.
Campaigner and Fundraiser – Andrea Aviet
Andrea is a startling example of how it is possible to find the strength not only to turn your own life around but also speak as a voice of hope and change for others in similar situations. Author and self-publisher of White Sorrow, an account of domestic abuse spanning five years Andrea uses her own experiences to ‘motivate women to not accept abuse of any kind’.
Winner of the prestigious title of Inspirational Fundraiser at the 2017 Inspiration Awards for Women, Andrea is a single mum who puts all her effort into helping women through her book. She has spoken at events in Dublin, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Australia and Germany, supported Family law days and Anti Abuse Conferences. She has also been named as a LinkedIn Global Goodwill Ambassador.
One of our aims at ACAI Activewear is to encourage women to achieve their full potential and Andrea certainly demonstrates how this is possible under the most adverse of situations.
Mum and Blogger – Vicki Psarias
Former TV and film director Vicki Psarias is an incredible example of how you can turn your passion into a career. Whilst being on maternity leave in 2010, Vicki set up www.honestmum.com as a means of regaining her identity and voice after a traumatic birth experience. By the time she was pregnant with her second son, Vicki was generating more income from her blog than her career as a film director, which was also taking her away from her family. So with the decision made Vicki has gone on to create a blog and vlog space dedicated to family life, food, film, fashion, beauty and travel.
Author of Mum Boss and Finalist at the NatWest Great British Entrepreneur Awards 2017, Vicki says, “I am committed to helping others feel more confident and kick-ass about themselves”.
Her fresh, open and honest account of the highs and lows of family life entertain and inspire over 30,000 followers and serves as reminder to many women that it is possible to be, have and achieve what you want without having to chose between work and family life.
If you have been inspired by the vision, mission and values of these incredible women, we would love to hear from you. Whatever your own intentions for 2018, whether it be to travel more, start your own business, raise funds for a charity or improve your health and well being, please get in touch and let us know where your own adventures lead you.
Natalie Campbell: A very badass social entrepreneur. Dara Jegede 2016 www.firstwomen.co.uk
Elinor Barker interview: 'Am I a dark horse? I really don't know. I could win or finish 38th’. Tom Cary, 2017 www.telegraph.co.uk
Inspiration Awards for Women – www.inspirationawards.co.uk