What’s next in Knowsley?

Our place-based work in Knowsley continues in 2024 with the Women in the Know group. Cross-cutting the themes of women and place, ‘Women in the Know’ is designed to engage and support women in Knowsley who work to increase the impact of the social economy both in place, and across the LCR.  

A campaign and delivery programme in October 2023 raised initial interest, making sure that the programme was widely supported and attended and engaging women across the borough, from Kirkby to Prescot and Huyton. 

We started the programme with local female STO leaders hosting five outreach sessions in mid-October, with 37 local women attending. It was an opportunity to talk about their social business activity, startups and ideas to make improvements in their communities. The group were supported to explore their ideas and their aspirations for their new and existing socially trading businesses; to connect with each other and work towards pitching to secure Kindred Development Awards to support the realisation of their plans. 

Their feedback included: “I’ve loved being in the presence of women – strong and powerful women who are trying to make a change in the community… networking and sharing best practice and contacts to support each other” and an “amazing group of women with really diverse skills and talents.” 

After the events, Kindred’s place lead Chris Spriggs supported 19 women to clearly set out their asks and offers, which they shared with a peer panel, which resulted in 19 monetary and in-kind awards. Agreements were developed so that each one had a clear delivery plan and was clear on the support that they were receiving from Kindred and others. 

A celebratory event at the Shakespeare North Playhouse in November saw us work closely with CEO Mel Lewis and her team, to create a programme that addressed shared issues around the development of a talent pipeline for Knowsley and placed a spotlight on women in Knowsley who are building the new social economy. Over 100 guests were treated to an evening of live music, spoken word performances and above all, had the opportunity to listen to pitches from 17 Women in the Know.  

Three clear themes the WitK women were developing their social impact activity around were care, creativity and environment – and how they often met and crossed over etc. We’re now working closely with the women to support them as they move forward.

The programme continues with one-to-ones, small group thematic sessions and a series of networking events in early 2024, including an event to mark International Women’s Day. We’re also working with partners including Knowsley Council Business Development Team; Knowsley Chamber; One Knowsley and two women-led local business support organisations (Capacity for Change and Clockwork Studios), on how to best support the women who’ve also asked for support with telling their story, funding and investment, governance and organisational development. 

To see more from our celebratory event held at Shakespeare North Playhouse, click here.

If you’d like to join us for a celebration of International Women’s Day, alongside our Women in the Know, click here to sign up…